In GOP campaign cooperative tone arises amid risks

By STEVE PEOPLES | November 5, 2011 | 8:55 AM EDT

Republican presidential hopeful Texas Gov. Rick Perry speaks during the Iowa Republican Party's Ronald Reagan Dinner, Friday, Nov. 4, 2011, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — Most voters crave an end to Washington's partisan gridlock, and two Republican presidential contenders are highlighting their ability to reach outside their party and work with home-state Democrats.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney and Texas Gov. Rick Perry are trying to broaden their appeal to independent voters whose support will be critical in the general election.

Romney promotes the health care overhaul that passed in his state when he was governor. Perry defends the Texas law giving in-state college tuition to some illegal immigrants.

But the talk of compromise isn't a popular theme in the Republican primary campaign. And if they want to win the nomination, the contenders must first survive a series of Republican contests that generally are dominated by the most passionate partisans.