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Seth McLaughlin

Seth McLaughlin, a reporter on the Politics Desk, can be reached at smclaughlin@washingtontimes.com. Follow him on Twitter: @SethMcLaughlin1

Articles by Seth McLaughlin

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks to the annual meeting of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People in Houston on Wednesday, July 11, 2012. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

Campaigns trade charges of lying; Romney camp seeks apology

President Obama's campaign said Wednesday that Mitt Romney either lied to voters or to federal regulators about how long he ran his company, while the GOP candidate's team said the "felony" accusation was so over-the-top that the president should apologize for his aides' behavior; voters were left to sort it all out. Published July 12, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks to the annual convention of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People on Wednesday, July 11, 2012, in Houston. (AP Photo/Evan Vucci)

NAACP is hard sell for Romney

Trying to cut into President Obama's overwhelming lead among black voters, presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney told the nation's leading African-American civil rights group that blacks have suffered more than most on the president's watch and he plans to fight for their vote. Published July 11, 2012

President Obama shares a laugh July 10, 2012, with Jason and Ali McLaughlin and their son, Cooper, while visiting their home in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. (Associated Press)

Rich must pay more taxes, Obama tells voters

A day after demanding Washington lawmakers extend middle-class tax cuts while raising taxes on the wealthy, President Obama took his case directly to voters Tuesday, traveling to Iowa to argue that the rich should pay higher taxes in order to cut the deficit and fund his spending priorities. Published July 10, 2012

**FILE** Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney campaigns June 19, 2012, in Holland, Mich. (Associated Press)

Romney, RNC post massive June cash haul

Presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney and the Republican National Committee raised $35 million more than President Obama and his Democratic allies last month, winning their second month in a row. Published July 9, 2012

President Obama speaks Thursday at the Wolcott House Museum Complex in Maumee, Ohio, as part of a two-day "Betting on America" bus tour across Ohio and Pennsylvania. Mr. Obama flipped counties across the Rust Belt en route to winning the 2008 presidential election. (Associated Press)

Obama struggles to shine again in Rust Belt

As President Obama is in the middle of a two-day "Betting on America" bus tour across Ohio and Pennsylvania, political analysts said he will have to reassemble the "hope and change" demographic coalition of 2008 that relied on a high turnout of youths and blacks, and winning a larger-than-usual percentage of Hispanics and whites. By most accounts, that will be easier said than done. Published July 5, 2012

With the Capitol in the background, Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks about the Supreme Court's health care ruling, Thursday, June 28, 2012, in Washington. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

GOP waits for Romney to pick 'tax' or 'penalty'

A semantic dispute over what defines "a tax" or "a penalty" has pushed Mitt Romney's presidential campaign deeply off message as he struggles for the right response to last week's Supreme Court ruling upholding the health care law. Published July 3, 2012

With the U.S. Capitol in the background, Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks about the Supreme Court's health care ruling on June 28, 2012. (Associated Press)

Romney: To kill health law, Obama must go

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney said Thursday that the Supreme Court ruling upholding President Obama's health care law means that the only way now to remove the law is to remove the president in the November election. Published June 28, 2012

** FILE ** GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney has said, " If I am elected president, we are going to get rid of Obamacare and replace it with real reform." (Associated Press)

Health care decision will have great influence on campaign

On the eve of the Supreme Court's ruling on the constitutionality of President Obama's federal health care overhaul, presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney tried to erase any doubt about what he plans to do with any parts of the law that might survive. Published June 27, 2012

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney signs autographs while campaigning Tuesday at Carter Machinery Company Inc., in Salem, Va. As he moves closer to official nomination, Mr. Romney is being pressed for more specifics on key issues such as immigration, health care and women's pay, as well as fixing the economy. (Associated Press)

Romney taking heat on amnesty question

The past two weeks have offered Mitt Romney numerous opportunities to clarify his stance on immigration — and every time the presumptive Republican presidential nominee has taken a pass. Published June 26, 2012

** FILE ** Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks on Sunday, June 17, 2012, at a campaign event at K's Hamburger Shop in Troy, Ohio. Joining him onstage is Sen. Rob Portman (left), Ohio Republican, and House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican. (Associated Press)

Would-be stars walk tightrope in Romney VP circus

The buzz around Mitt Romney's vice-presidential choice has become deafening — a political soap opera that involves "American Idol"-like auditions on the stump and conflicting reports on who is in the running. Published June 25, 2012

Rubio

Rubio: Obama edict on illegals politicized issue

Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida said Thursday that President Obama's unilateral decision to stop deporting young illegal immigrants has further politicized an already emotionally charged issue and short-circuited bipartisan efforts to find a long-term solution. Published June 21, 2012

Mitt Romney is scheduled to speak to the National Association of Latino Elected and Appointed Officials on Thursday in Orlando with President Obama's deportation announcement expected to loom large for both candidates. (Associated Press)

Immigration decision alters campaigns' focus

President Obama's speech Friday to one of the country's largest Hispanic organizations has changed from a potential trip through the gantlet into what amounts to a victory lap after he announced last week that he was unilaterally halting deportations of young illegal immigrants. Published June 20, 2012

Romney supporters rally in DeWitt, Mich., on Tuesday. Even among the crowds that turned out to hear Mr. Romney, it was evident that this fall's election will be a referendum on President Obama's first term. (Associated Press)

Anti-Obama sentiment fuels Romney on campaign trail

Mitt Romney's six-state bus swing through small cities and towns in New England, the Rust Belt and the industrial Midwest served as a clear reminder that his biggest ally in the presidential race is also his biggest foe: President Obama. Published June 19, 2012

On a bus tour of Wisconsin that included a stop Monday at Montery Mills in Janesville, Mitt Romney had a carefully modulated response to President Obama's surprise decision on illegal immigrants. (Associated Press)

Immigrant debate shifting under GOP's feet

The muted public reaction to President Obama's immigration decision of last week — and Mitt Romney's carefully modulated response to the surprise order — could signal an unexpected shift in what has been one of the country's thorniest political issues. Published June 18, 2012

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks June 18, 2012, during a campaign event at Monterey Mills in Janesville, Wis. (Associated Press)

Romney predicts Wisconsin win

Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney campaigned alongside this state's top Republicans on Monday, declaring that he'll win the Badger State in the general election — a prediction that, if it turns out to be true, would be a bad omen for President Obama's re-election plans. Published June 18, 2012

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney arrives for a campaign stop at Mapleside Farms on Sunday in Brunswick, Ohio. No Republican ever has won the White House without winning the Buckeye State. (Associated Press)

For Romney, road to White House runs through nation's Rust Belt

Mitt Romney is trying to do something that Sen. John McCain, the Republican Party's 2008 presidential nominee, could not shore up enough support among the rural, blue-collar voters in such Rust Belt states as Pennsylvania and Ohio to win the White House. Published June 17, 2012

** FILE ** Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney speaks on Sunday, June 17, 2012, at a campaign event at K's Hamburger Shop in Troy, Ohio. Joining him onstage is Sen. Rob Portman (left), Ohio Republican, and House Speaker John A. Boehner, Ohio Republican. (Associated Press)

In Ohio, earthy Boehner is a contrast to squeaky clean Romney

Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, the clean-cut son of a former governor, and House Speaker John A. Boehner, the cigarette-smoking son of a bar owner, joined forces Sunday, marking the first time this campaign season the two powerful Republicans have shared a stage and the first time they've ever met for burgers. Published June 17, 2012

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and his wife, Ann, arrive June 15, 2012, for a campaign stop at the Scamman Farm in Stratham, N.H. (Associated Press)

Romney to N.H.: You 'don't have to settle' for Obama

Presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney kicked off his first traditional campaign trip of the general election Friday by returning to the sprawling New Hampshire farm from where he launched his second presidential bid just over a year ago. Published June 15, 2012

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee, delivers a stump speech during a campaign stop at Seilkop Industries in Cincinnati on Thursday. (Associated Press)

Romney on board for battleground bus tour

Mitt Romney is set to launch a six-state bus tour Friday that will carry him through crucial battleground states President Obama captured in the 2008 election — and could offer the presumptive Republican presidential nominee the chance for some unscripted campaign moments. Published June 14, 2012

Republican presidential candidate and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney speaks June 13, 2012, during the Business Roundtable quarterly meeting at the Newseum in Washington. (Associated Press)

Romney to top CEOs: White House is anti-business

Showering business leaders Wednesday with promises of lower tax rates and a lighter regulatory environment, presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney accused President Obama of trying to duck responsibility for embracing policies that have generated the nation's "tepid" economic recovery and left millions of people out of work. Published June 13, 2012