Salena Zito
Mitt Romney sharpened his attacks on President Obama’s economic and health-care policies in appearances at a Westmoreland County business and a Pittsburgh fundraiser on Tuesday.

“He has to recognize that his policies have failed to get Americans work again,” Romney told a crowd of more than 1,000 people at Horizontal Wireline Services in North Huntingdon, which runs wires into gas and oil wells to help extract Marcellus shale gas. “I have an answer for him: liberal policies don’t make jobs.”

Later, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee and former Massachusetts governor attended a fundraiser at the Duquesne Club, Downtown, where tickets ranged from $2,500 for the reception to $50,000 for a private dinner. More than 300 tickets were sold.

Between the rally and Duquesne Club, he raised money at a private residence whose owner the campaign did not disclose.

Romney continued a Republican line of attack on remarks Obama made Friday, when the president said, “If you’ve got a business, you didn’t build that.” Obama supporters say the president was referring to the educational, electronic and physical infrastructure built publicly that helps businesses thrive. Romney said the comment shows a misunderstanding of the economy.

“We all welcome and realize the need for firemen, policemen, people who build roads and teachers; they’re very important to our society. But government did not give us those people. We’re paying for them,” Romney said at the Duquesne Club fundraiser.

At the rally, Romney called Obama’s remark “insulting.”

“The idea to say that Steve Jobs didn’t build Apple, that Henry Ford didn’t build Ford Motor, that Papa John didn’t build Papa John Pizza ... you go down the list,” Romney said. “... it is insulting to every entrepreneur, every innovator in America, and it’s wrong.”

Romney said Obama is “out of touch with America, and that is what is going to put him out of office.”

A few protesters stood at the entrance to Horizontal Wireline Services, some carrying signs stating, “Romney: Release your tax returns.” Organizers of a protest outside the Duquesne Club said between 100 and 200 people attended, but they were gone by the time Romney arrived.

“Our democracy is being sold to the highest bidder,” said Aaron Black, an Occupy Wall Street protester for New York who said he came to Pittsburgh for the protest.

Romney said the wealthy won’t be as affected by the election as the middle class and millions of un- and under-employed workers.

Salena Zito

Salena Zito is a political analyst, reporter and columnist.