President Barack Obama will give his first major economic speech of the general election on Thursday in the critical battleground state of Ohio. He's expected to defend his handling of the economic recovery and warn voters that things will be worse if they put Mitt Romney in the White House. A pollout on Wednesday found that only 38 percent of independent swing voters have favorable views of Obama's economic plans. Romney has already offered a preemptive rebuttal to Obama's speech, saying voters should not be swayed by Obama's rhetoric, insisting his "words are cheap."
Obama will later head to New York, where he and first lady Michelle Obama will visit the World Trade Center site. They'll then head to fundraisers in the evening, including an event hosted by actress Sarah Jessica Parker.
Hotly contested Ohio will also get a visit from Romney on Thursday. The former Massachusetts governor will hold a campaign event in Cincinnati before heading to Chicago for a fundraiser.
Back in Washington, the annual Faith and Freedom Conference kicks off on Thursday. Speakers at the three-day event include Romney, who will speak via video conference on Saturday since he'll be on the road on his battleground state bus tour, and former Republican presidential candidates Newt Gingrich and Herman Cain. Sens. Rob Portman, Marco Rubio and Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell, all possible Romney vice presidential picks, will also speak.
And then there is this: Vice President Joe Biden will be in Virginia on Thursday to deliver the commencement address to Tallwood High School graduates in Virginia Beach.