The Note's Must-Reads for Friday, May 4, 2012

The Note's Must-Reads are a round-up of today's political headlines and stories from ABC News and the top U.S. newspapers. Posted Monday through Friday right here at

Compiled by ABC News' Jayce Henderson and Amanda VanAllen

PRESIDENT OBAMA: The Los Angeles Times' Michael Memoli, Christi Parsons and Kathleen Hennessey: " Obama campaign tailors message for key states and voters" If Barack Obama's first presidential campaign was part cultural phenomenon, part national movement, his second may look a bit more modest - like a series of well-run Senate campaigns. LINK

USA Today's Aamer Madhani and Richard Wolf: " Obama pulls out all stops on campuses to reclaim support" After winning the youth vote in 2008 by nearly 2-to-1, the Obama campaign has doubled down on efforts to expand the base of young voters who were key to propelling the president to the White House. Over the past year, the campaign says, it has recruited thousands of young volunteers to help with voter outreach efforts on campuses and across the country. LINK

Politico's Edward -Issac Dovere and Jennifer Epstein: " GOP pounds Obama on Chen case" President Barack Obama wanted people to talk about foreign policy this week - but not like this. Two days after the president flew to Afghanistan for a carefully constructed trip to press the image of a strong foreign policy leader - he's ending two wars, he ordered the raid that killed Osama bin Laden - he's caught in a thorny foreign policy situation his administration didn't ask for, tried hard to avoid and that risks setting up the president as a lead negotiator unable to close the deal. LINK

MITT ROMNEY: ABC News' Matthew Dowd: " Romney Needs a Better Brand" Branding is as important in politics as it is for products in the commercial marketplace and our daily lives and relationships (but that's a column for another day). This election will be contested around certain values and the economy. Right now, Mitt Romney has a slight lead over President Obama over who is best to handle the economy. LINK

The Wall Street Journal's Neil King Jr. and Laura Meckler: " Math Challenge for Romney" Mitt Romney's campaign says it has many routes to the 270 votes needed for victory in the Electoral College this fall. But almost all of them rely on a difficult feat: Winning at least six states that went for President Barack Obama in 2008. Spot Mr. Romney the five biggest swing states the Democrat won four years ago-Florida, Ohio, Virginia, North Carolina and Indiana-and the Republican still wouldn't be guaranteed the White House. To win, he would need to also carry at least one other state that went to Mr. Obama four years ago. LINK

The Washington Post's Dan Balz and Philip Rucker: " Romney faces a narrow path to 270 electoral votes, but his team remains optimistic" Mitt Romney faces a narrow path to the presidency, one that requires winning back states that President Obama took from Republicans in 2008 and that has few apparent opportunities for Romney to steal away traditionally Democratic states. LINK

The Washington Times' Luke Rosiak: " Romney super PAC donors put at credit card risk" The political fund that has raised more than $50 million to support Mitt Romney's bid for the presidency has been collecting money online with a system so insecure that it exposes donors' credit card information to even casual snoopers. LINK

NEWT GINGRICH: ABC News' Elicia Dover: " Newt Gingrich Still Thinks Mitt Romney Lied During Campaign" Former Republican presidential candidate Newt Gingrich said Mitt Romney "said things that weren't true," over the course of the campaign. Shown a new ad from the Obama campaign during an interview with CNN's Wolf Blitzer Thursday - a clip reel of Gingrich's slams on Romney during the primary season - Gingrich laughed and said, "You have a rough-and-tumble primary season and you'll get words like that." LINK

VOTERS / OTHER: The New York Times' Sabrina Tavernise: " 4 Years Later, Race Is Still Issue for Some Voters" This is the land of die-hard Democrats - mill workers, coal miners and union members. They have voted party line for generations, forming a reliable constituency for just about any Democrat who decides to run for office. LINK

New York Daily News' Aliyah Shahid: " Mitt Romney, President Obama in virtual tie in Ohio, Florida: Poll" Mitt Romney is hot on President Obama's heels. A new Quinnipiac University poll shows the presumed Republican presidential candidate in a virtual tie with Obama in the key, battleground states of Florida and Ohio. Just a month ago, Obama was ahead in both states. LINK

The Hill's Vicki Needham: " Obama, Romney brace for April jobs report; slow growth expected" The White House and Mitt Romney's campaign are bracing for a new jobs report Friday that will set the tone for this fall's general election battle. The report for April is expected to be tepid, with most analysts forecasting job gains of 120,00 to 170,000-not enough to significantly lower the unemployment rate. LINK

ABC NEWS VIDEOS " Obama Sets Fundraiser Records" LINK

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