The wives of presidential candidates are often called "secret weapons" because of inherent traits of which their husbands could only dream. They can give a speech almost entirely without substance and bring crowds to their feet, talking about family and Americanism and whatnot.
Now, both President Obama and Mitt Romney are dispatching their other halves to the stump. Michelle Obama is in Virginia today, and Ann Romney is in North Carolina. So what's the difference between a rally hosted by FLOTUS or POTUS, or Ann or Mitt? We spliced together their stump speeches to see.
Barack: "We made progress - 4.5 million jobs; 500,000 new manufacturing jobs, the most since the 1990s. … We have made progress, but we've still got a lot more work to do."
Michelle: "He understands that an economy built to last starts with the middle class and the folks who are creating jobs and putting people back to work."
Mitt: "His priority is not creating jobs for you. His priority is trying to keep his own job, and that's why he's going to lose it."
Ann: "Women are talking about the economy and jobs and about the legacy of debt that we are going to leave our children, and we are mad about it."
Barack: "I'd see an elderly couple and I'd think about my grandparents - my grandfather who fought in World War II, and my grandmother who worked on a bomber assembly line while he was gone."
Michelle: "Thank you for your service, sweetie."
Mitt: "I want to express appreciation for the heroes that have proved themselves in liberating strife, who more themselves their country loved and mercy more than life."
Ann: "The shot heard round the world - how grateful we were for those patriots that had the ability to fight tyranny."
Barack: "Wherever I go, what I'm always struck by is the core decency and goodness and hard work and responsibility and faith that the American people have."
Michelle: "Can I get an Amen on that?"
Mitt: "A president like me who believes in the vision of the Founding Fathers that God gave us our rights, and those rights include our freedom to pursue happiness as we choose."
The Other Party
Barack: "My opponent, and his allies in Congress, they've got a particular view about how you grow the economy - top-down economics."
Michelle: "Are we going to continue the change we've begun and the progress we've made? Or are we going to let everything we've worked so hard for to just slip away?"
Mitt: "We won't forget, by the way, that Congress was in his party for two years with a super majority. He takes responsibility for what happened when he was president and he had his Congress."
Ann: "American's in trouble. We're heading in the wrong direction. We're spending too much money."
Barack: "Their basic view is that if you take the Bush tax cuts and on top of that you then layer on $5 trillion more of tax cuts, mostly for the wealthy, and you eliminate regulations on polluters or the regulations we put in place to prevent another meltdown on Wall Street, or regulations to make sure that folks aren't being taken advantage of by unscrupulous lenders - that if you just eliminate government intrusion into the market and let folks at the very top maximize their profits, that we'll all do better, we'll all be better off."
Michelle: "We believe that everyone should do their fair share, but play by the same rules."
Mitt: "How about his proposal to raise taxes on small business from 35 percent up to 40 percent? Does that create jobs?"
Ann: "They're so concerned about their children. Why it is - because of the debt we are going to give to our children. And we have had it. Washington, here we come."
Barack: "We're not going to roll back Wall Street reform. We know the costs when you've got lax regulation - everybody is affected, everybody pays a price."
Michelle: "[My dad] was so proud to be sending his kids to college, and he did all that he could within his power to lessen our financial burden by ensuring that neither me nor my brother ever missed a registration deadline because his check was late."
Mitt: "Did Dodd-Frank make it easier for banks to make loans to people that need help getting a business going?"
Ann: "There were days when I thought my only future was going to be in bed and too weak to even have any kind of a normal life, and yet [Mitt] kept encouraging me, and he kept on loving me and telling me that none of those things that I actually did physically to take care of the house and the children and the bills and all the things which - some people think that I didn't work, but you know, those were things, those were things I was busy doing!"
Barack: If you're willing to knock on doors for me and make phone calls for me and talk to your friends and neighbors for me, and mobilize and organize, then we will finish what we started in 2008."
Michelle: "Find those nephews and nieces who aren't registered to vote and shake them."
Mitt: "Together we are going to bring back the strength that provides a bright future for us and for our children."