Republican presidential primary candidates who stand in the way of convention delegates' speedy nod to frontrunner Mitt Romney were never mentioned in a 16-minute speech made Tuesday in Liberty. Mo.
The total focus of the appearance was on beating President Barack Obama in the general election in November.
The former Massachusetts governor was dressed in jeans to match the flavor of a live bluegrass band at William Jewell College. He received frequent applause from some 300 people, the size of the crowd inside a cordoned-off area estimated by Liberty police.
Mr. Romney called President Obama "not a bad guy" but one in "over his head." The leading GOP candidate talked of cutting what he called wasteful spending in the armed forces, accused the president of killing jobs growth via changes in the tax code and vowed never to adopt European fiscal policies.
On government cuts, Mr. Romney said he will have three rules.
"Is this program so essential, it's worth borrowing money from China to pay for it? And if it doesn't pass that test, I'm getting rid of it," Romney said.
"So Obamacare, goodbye. Subsidies for Amtrak and Planned Parenthood, even PBS. Look, I like PBS. I'll be honest, I like PBS. We borrow money so PBS doesn't have to show advertising to our kids. Well, Big Bird's going to have to get used to Kellogg's Cornflakes because we're going to have to have advertising or bigger donations."
Mr. Romney asked supporters to vote for him in Missouri caucuses. Again, no mention of primary opponents.