“We have a number of states that are competitive where we believe he helps us,” Romney senior advisor Kevin Madden told reporters on Sunday. “Obviously, his home state of Wisconsin and some of these other Great Lake states. But Iowa in particular, that is a state where I think his life story is important for others, something that I think helps him connect with a lot of those voters there.”

Still, the president has some built-in advantages in Iowa. The state has the seventh-lowest unemployment rate in the nation at 5.2 percent, well below the national average of 8.3, and down from 6 percent one year ago.

In addition, while the Romney campaign has hammered the president for his green energy policies, Obama’s support for wind power could be a significant asset for the president in Iowa, as well as a major liability for Romney.

Iowa’s economy has been buoyed by wind energy during a drought that has crippled the state’s agricultural industry.