Obama, Romney star power shines on businesses

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Associated Press

Posted on May 3, 2012 at 11:01 AM

Updated Thursday, May 3 at 1:03 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — Call it the Obama effect: A presidential visit can be good advertising for restaurants and businesses.

Vermilion in Alexandria, Va., is one of the most recent establishments in the spotlight after President Barack Obama and his wife, Michelle, dined there on Valentine's Day.

General manager David Hammond said the exposure has helped create a buzz and drive business.

The Corcoran Gallery of Art also experienced a bump in interest after the first family's visit.

But the star power isn't limited to Obama. Presumptive Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney visited Charlie Parker's Diner in Springfield, Ill., for breakfast while campaigning in March. The owner, Mike Murphy, says he's asked at least a dozen times a day about Romney's visit.

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