U.S. President Barack Obama is taking a break from the campaign trail Friday, while his Republican challenger Mitt Romney makes what his aides say is a major economic address.
A campaign spokesperson says Romney's speech in the so-called swing state of Iowa is the candidate's "closing argument" and will highlight differences in economic policy with the president.
Obama, who is coming off a 40-hour campaign blitz across the country, is spending most of Friday at the White House, where he will participate in several media interviews.
Polls have showed that the presidential race is virtually tied as the campaign enters its final stages before the November 6 election.
On Thursday, Obama became the first ever U.S. president to cast an early ballot in a presidential election. Obama voted Thursday afternoon at the Chicago (Illinois) polling place where he is a registered voter.
The president also received the endorsement of former Secretary of State Colin Powell, who praised Obama's policies in managing the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq. Powell, a Republican, also backed Obama in 2008.
A co-chair of Mitt Romney's campaign, John Sununu, received criticism Thursday after suggesting on CNN that Powell's endorsement of Obama was based on race, since both men are African Americans.
Sununu, a former White House chief of staff under President George W. Bush, later backtracked, saying in a statement that Powell was a friend and he believed the endorsement was based on his support for the president's policies.