Mitt Romney is coming to his convention city on Tuesday.

The Republican presidential candidate will fly from Boston to Tampa on the same day his wife, Ann, is scheduled to deliver a speech to the national convention, his campaign said Monday night. Tuesday is the convention's first full day of business.

There has been speculation that Romney would visit the convention hall Tuesday night, but the campaign would confirm only that he was flying to town in time for his wife's speech.

Romney is scheduled to accept the Republican presidential nomination Thursday.


When Reince Priebus, the GOP chairman, banged a gavel to open the convention Monday afternoon, a "debt clock" in the convention hall activated, tallying the debt that is accumulating during the four-day event. A second ticker displays the total national debt, which is approaching $16 trillion.

"This clock reminds every delegate and every American of why we are here in Tampa -- because America can and must do better," Priebus said.


New polls show President Obama and Mitt Romney running even, continuing a summer-long trend in which neither candidate has been able to establish or maintain a clear lead in many national surveys.

In an ABC News/Washington Post poll conducted Wednesday through Saturday, 47 percent of registered voters supported Romney and 46 percent Obama, a split well within the poll's margin of sampling error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. A CNN/ORC poll conducted last week found Obama with 49 percent support among likely voters to Romney's 47 percent. The margin of sampling error was plus or minus 3 points.


Former Republican Gov. Charlie Crist of Florida, who on Sunday endorsed President Obama, will speak next week at the Democratic National Convention.

Democrats said Crist would focus on the middle class and the economy and make the case that Mitt Romney has catered to "the most extreme elements of the Republican Party."

It's another remarkable turn for Crist, and a sign he's close to declaring himself a Democrat after a long political career as a Republican. Crist is widely considered to be preparing to challenge Gov. Rick Scott in 2014.

Democratic planners in Charlotte, N.C., site of the convention, said they had not settled on which day of the gathering Crist would speak.

Florida Republican Party Chairman Lenny Curry said it was a further sign Crist is guided by personal ambition alone.

it's platforms over personalities

More Americans are interested in what the Democratic and Republican platforms have to say than the party's presidential nominees, a poll released Monday found.

The Pew Research Center for the People & the Press survey was taken as Republicans gathered in Tampa this week and Democrats prepared to meet next week in Charlotte, N.C.

The poll found 52 percent of U.S. adults interested in the Republican Party platform and 55 percent interested in the Democrats' statement of principles, both of which will be adopted at their conventions.

According to the Pew survey, 46 percent of adults are interested in the acceptance speech by Romney's choice for vice president, Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin. Forty- four percent are interested in Romney's speech. That's lower than the 52 percent interested in the address by John McCain in 2008 in St. Paul.

Fifty-one percent of adults say they are interested in President Obama's acceptance speech, compared with 52 percent when Bill Clinton last ran.