Paul Ryan rally in Oldsmar
TAMPA - Three weeks after his nomination, Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan returns to the Tampa area for a rally today in Oldsmar. The rally with "Paul Ryan and the Republican Team" will be at R.E. Olds Park, 107 Shore Drive W., at 11 a.m., with gates opening at 9 a.m. Ryan is expected to speak at 11:50 a.m. It's the first visit to the Bay area by the Wisconsin congressman or presidential nominee Mitt Romney since the Republican National Convention in Tampa the last week of August.The visit underlines the importance of Florida's Interstate 4 corridor to their challenge to President Barack Obama, who visited the area last weekend on a two-day bus tour of the state. Obama held a 49 percent to 46 percent lead over Romney in Florida in a Quinnipiac poll Aug. 23, before both national conventions. In 2008, Obama won the state's 29 electoral votes, but by only a margin 236,000 of 8.3 million ballots cast. Obama has been to the state more than 20 times since announcing plans to run for re-election. Romney, who was in Jacksonville on Wednesday, has nearly matched that. Romney's wife, Ann, led a rally for women in Largo on Wednesday.The president was planning to begin one of the largest advertising campaigns ever in the state, according to reports. Ads would run in Tampa, Miami, Orlando, Jacksonville and Tallahassee. Attendees at today's event will go through airport-like security and should bring as few personal items as possible. No bags, sharp objects, umbrellas, liquids, or signs will be allowed in the venue. Cameras are permitted.