Romney opens campaign office in Naples
NAPLES - Mitt Romney, the presumptive Republican nominee for president, has opened a campaign office in Naples.
"Vote for Mitt Romney as the next president of the United States," said Naples Mayor John Sorey to loud applause.
The Romney campaign is renting out the county's Republican headquarters and putting up signs calling it "Romney Victory Center."
"He's going to make a great president," said Sorey. "And I'm proud to be a supporter."
Sorey says winning Florida - and Collier County - are key to winning in November.
"We've got to have a super win in Collier County," said Sorey. "To offset some of the more Democratic sectors of the state."
"Florida's a key state," he continued. "If we don't win Florida, we don't win the presidency."
Inside, volunteers like Joe Mehan, a recent college graduate, are hitting the phones.
"I'm volunteering my time here today," said Mehan, "because I believe Mitt Romney needs to win."
While the campaign looks to collect votes, and gauge support as part of their nationwide "Super Saturday" phone banking effort, here in Naples they're also looking to collect cash.
"Do you guys feel you can raise a lot of money in Naples?," asked Fox 4 reporter Matt Grant.
"Oh yes we can," said Dennis Hahm with Romney's Collier County campaign. "Yes we can."
President Obama and Romney are both looking to tap into big pocket donors. So far Romney has raised more than $820,000 in Naples, Bonita Springs and Marco Island, according to federal election records.
The president has raised more than $292,000 in the same area, according to FEC records.
For Romney, this is the second most profitable part of the state behind West Palm Beach and Boca Raton, according to FEC records.
That's why Michelle Obama held a fundraiser for her husband at the Inn on Fifth back in April.
"There's no question," said Sorey, "every dollar is critical."