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Ann Romney praises Mitt: The 'man America needs' (+video)

At the Republican National Convention on Tuesday in what she called 'the biggest speech' of her life, Mrs. Romney told voters 'you can trust Mitt.' Her husband, Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, will speak at the convention on Thursday.

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His surrogates did their best to counter Romney and the Republicans.

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Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, dismissing GOP attempts to woo Hispanic voters, said, "You can't just trot out a brown face or a Spanish surname and expect people are going to vote for your party or your candidate." He added, "This is a party with a platform that calls for the self-deportation of 11 million people."

Hispanics strongly favor Obama, according to public polls, and Romney and his party have been seeking to win a bigger share of their votes by emphasizing proposals to fix the economy rather than ease their positions on immigration.

Female voters, too, prefer the president over his challenger, and Democrats have done their best to emphasize GOP opposition to abortion and even suggest the party might try and curtail access to contraceptives if it wins power.

Whatever the impact of those issues, the polls show the economy is overwhelmingly the dominant issue in the race, and on that, the voters narrowly say they trust Romney more.

In an AP-GfK poll taken Aug. 16-20, some 48 percent of registered voters said they trust Romney more on economic issues, to 44 percent for Obama.

However, a Washington Post-ABC News in the days immediately before the convention found that 61 percent of registered voters said Obama was more likable, and 27 percent said Romney.

The convention took place in an atmosphere of security that was both stringent and selective. Thousands of police from all over the country, joined by National Guard troops, Secret Service and others, stood in small groups at checkpoints, demanding those entering a secure area display proper credentials numerous times.

But former Michigan Gov. John Engler and an aide were hustled to the front of a long line waiting to clear security at one building.

Aside from Paul, Romney's long-ago rivals for the party nomination had bit roles at his convention, if that.

Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain posed for a photo after running into each other at the convention center. Newt Gingrich and Rick Santorum were also in town, as well, both with speaking slots, unlike Bachmann and Cain.

Associated Press writers Brian Bakst, Thomas Beaumont, Tamara Lush, Brendan Farrington, Julie Mazziotta, Steve Peoples, Kasie Hunt and Philip Elliott in Florida and Steven Ohlemacher, Alicia A. Caldwell and Jennifer Agiesta in Washington contributed to this report.

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