Ann Romney visits port city

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Ann Romney stopped in to visit the new Portsmouth campaign office of her husband, presidential hopeful Mitt Romney, in the Parade Mall on Wednesday.
Don Clark/
Mitt Romney (R)
Former Governor, MA
Born: 03/12/1947
Birthplace: Michigan, CT
Home: Belmont, MA
Religion: Mormon
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PORTSMOUTH Mitt Romney's new Portsmouth office was opened for business the day after the leased was signed with a featured appearance from Ann Romney, the presidential hopeful's wife.

"Portsmouth is a great area and a hub for people throughout New Hampshire and Massachusetts," she said. "It's really the center of the Seacoast."

Ann Romney said she was confident in her husband's chances of winning the Republican nomination and told assembled supporters and staff that New Hampshire was essential to the Romney campaign.

"We're thinking Mitt is the next nominee, and I'd say I'm sure of that. I don't need to tell any of you how important New Hampshire is," she said.

She also mentioned Tuesday night's Republican debate in Dearborn, Mich., where her husband sparred with former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani. Mitt Romney emphasized the need for the next president to have a line-item veto and strongly criticized Giuliani's tax cuts and spending restraint.

"I did not increase taxes in Massachusetts. I lowered taxes," he said at the debate.

Ann Romney was in New Hampshire for much of the day, making stops in Manchester and Hampton in the morning. She was scheduled for a house party in Durham shortly after the grand opening of the Portsmouth office.

The office is in the Parade Mall on Hanover Street and will be a home for a rotating contingent of three or four New Hampshire Romney staffers and serve as a base for volunteer activities, according to Romney's New Hampshire campaign communications director Craig Stevens. The lease was signed so quickly that there was no furniture present for Ann Romney's visit.

Material from The Associated Press was used in this report.