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Romney campaign pulls a Wawa switcheroo

NBC's Peter Alexander has more on a last minute change of plans made by Mitt Romney's campaign on Saturday.

QUAKERTOWN, Penn. -- Presidential hopeful Mitt Romney did a switcheroo Saturday afternoon – moving his early afternoon event from one gas station to another in the same town.

On the second day of the “Every Town Counts” bus tour, Romney was scheduled to appear at a Quakertown Wawa, but more than 100 protesters gathered before Romney's planned arrival. With no explanation to the press, the campaign switched venues as the motorcade was en route and diverted everyone a couple miles away to another Wawa store.


“I think you asked me why we're at this Wawa instead of the other Wawa?” Romney joked with a local reporter inside the new venue. “I understand I had a surrogate over there already, so we decided to pick a different place. My surrogate is former Gov. (Ed) Rendell, who said we could win Pennsylvania. I'm happy to hear that so we're happy to be here and see some folks here."

Local reports said Romney’s public schedule showed the candidate was to appear where Rendell, a Democrat, led protesters at the first Wawa.

Romney walked around inside the Wawa – grabbing a meatball hoagie – with former Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty and Sen. Pat Toomey, R-Penn. The presumptive GOP nominee was in and out of the retail campaign stop in just over 10 minutes.

The former Massachusetts governor had one more stop Saturday in Cornwall, Penn.

This was just the latest confrontation in the ongoing scuffles between the two sides politically this campaign season.

Just about two weeks ago while President Barack Obama's senior campaign adviser, David Axlerod, was in Boston -- where Romney's campaign headquarters is located -- massive amounts of anti-Obama protesters drowned out his speech.