Los Angeles (CNS/AP/KFWB)- Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney has left Beverly Hills with another $6 million in his campaign coffers.
Romney made a two-day fundraising swing through California and held out this state as something the rest of the nation does -not- want to become.
At a gala fundraiser at the Beverly Hilton, Romney criticized President Barack Obama for failing to “fix Washington.”
“The truth is, he has proven he cannot fix Washington from the inside.” Romney said President Obama is taking America on a “pathway to become like Europe,” and “Europe doesn’t work there. It’s never going to work here.”
Romney added “It’s even possible we could be on a pathway to become California – I don’t want that either.” Romney later said the California dig was a joke.
The former Massachusetts governor’s schedule, particularly his focus on fundraising over campaigning in battleground states with voters, has drawn criticism from some Republicans who fear the campaign is moving in the wrong direction less than seven weeks before Election Day. Polls suggest that President Obama has a narrow lead in several key states.
Romney adviser Kevin Madden defended the fundraising focus, while highlighting a shift in the coming days. “We’re here raising the resources we’re going to need to compete in all those battleground states through Election Day,” Madden said. “That’s also been matched with a really intense battle ground state schedule that’s going to be coming up starting Sunday night. We’re keeping very busy.”
Cognizant of the criticism, Romney’s campaign added a Colorado rally to his Sunday night schedule ahead of a three-day bus tour in Ohio. He’ll also campaign in Virginia next week. All three states are considered highly competitive.
The shift comes as Romney works to get his campaign back on track. Already facing reports of campaign infighting, Romney suffered another setback early in the week after his remarks surfaced in an unauthorized video declaring that almost half of Americans are dependent upon government and believe they are victims.
On Friday, Romney released his 2011 tax returns showing income of $13.6 million, largely from investment income.