TAMPA — Mitt Romney tried to carefully strike a balance between acknowledging the suffering caused by Hurricane Sandy and the imperative of pressing ahead with his bid for the White House as he returned to the campaign trail here Wednesday morning.

Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney resumed campaigning Wednesday following a brief break during superstorm Sandy. He told a crowd in Florida to pray for the victims and urged the country to come together.

Romney opened the first of his three rallies across Florida with a plea for donations to support storm victims and a call for national unity. The Republican nominee never mentioned President Obama, who is scheduled to tour storm-ravaged New Jersey on Wednesday, and stripped from his remarks the harsh attacks on the president that had become staples of his stump speech.

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