Who is Mitt Romney? Local Residents Want to Know.
Now that Mitt Romney is likely to be the Republican nominee for president, Northeast Ohio residents may welcome a better perspective on the candidate who regularly visits the battleground state. Following is a quick overview:
Birth name: Willard Mitt Romney
Age: 65 (born March 12, 1947)
Born: Detroit, Michigan, the son of George Romney, an auto executive and Lenore Romney
Family: Wife Ann and five boys who are now adults and each has been married for several years.
Past political posts: Governor of Massachusetts.
Political positions: Romney: wants to repeal the healthcare reform law referred to as Obamacare. Ironically, Romney created and enacted “Romneycare,” a very similar law in Massachusetts while he was Governor, providing comparable healthcare benefits to residents; he opposes the Dream Act which would provide residency to illegal aliens of good character who graduate from U.S. high schools, and arrived in the country as minors; favors major cuts to Medicare, and giving seniors a fixed health benefit to go towards their healthcare needs, but will be much less generous than the current program. Learn more about his positions on issues at: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Political_positions_of_Mitt_Romney
Financial status: Said to be worth about $275 million, which would make him one of the wealthiest Presidents ever, if elected. He earned an estimated $20.9 million in 2011 (see: http://www.mittromney.com/learn/mitt/tax-return/2011/wmr-adr-return That is about 441 times the median household income ($47,358) of Ohio families, according to the US Census figures (2006 to 2010). Romney earned most of his money working at Bain Capital, and serving as CEO of Bain & Company division, financial service firms that restructures and buys out US companies for the benefit of its shareholders and investors.
Resides: Three homes, one each in the Boston suburb of Belmont, Massachusetts, an oceanside home in swanky La Jolla, California, and a spacious three-story lakeside home in rural Wolfeboro, New Hampshire. The Romneys plan to redo the La Jolla home and more than double it in size, including adding the infamous car elevator. They sold their $3.5 million dollar, 7-bedroom, 6.5 bath mansion in Belmont in 2009, just before the campaign began – maybe to appear less ostentatious to voters.
Biggest Donors: The largest contributors to Romney’s campaign are financial firms such as Goldman Sachs, Bain and JP Morgan Chase, according to the Center for Responsive Politics, http://www.opensecrets.org/pres12/contrib.php?id=N00000286 In reality though, his largest contributors are donors to Super PACs supporting Romney – uber-wealthy contributors that the Romney campaign and Republican leaders don’t want the public to know about -- including the billionaire Koch Brothers ($60 million contribution) and casino magnate Sheldon Adelson ($10
million contribution). Their money will fund an expected record amount of political advertising and other initiatives to elect Romney, and position Obama in a negative light. The FBI and SEC are investigating Adelson, who Forbes Magazine calls the largest foreign investor in China, for possibly bribing Chinese officials. It’s possible that money that Adelson donates to Republicans, comes from the Chinese government.
Bain Capital: Romney and his Bain Capital colleagues invested in several firms that focused on relocating jobs overseas, according to a recent Washington Post story. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/romneys-bain-capital-invested-in-companies-that-moved-jobs-overseas/2012/06/21/gJQAsD9ptV_story.html This has the Obama campaign nicknaming Romney, “outsourcer-in-chief.”
Super-Secretive: Romney has provided only one year of tax returns and so far refuses to provide more than two years of returns, unlike nearly all past Presidential candidates, including Obama, GW Bush, Kerry, Clinton, Dukakis, all whom have provided many years of tax returns. The Washington Post gave Romney “three Pinocchio’s” for providing “misleading” information on past candidates tax return history (http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/fact-checker/post/romneys-misleading-history-of-tax-returns-issued-by-presidential-contenders/2012/07/16/gJQAChunpW_blog.html) Romney also refuses to fully answer questions on his years at Bain Capital.
Religion: Life-long Mormon. He served as a bishop in the Mormon Church (also known as The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) in the late 1980s and early 1990s. It is believed he would be the first former Bishop ever to be president, if elected.
Languages spoken: Speaks English and French. As a teenager, Mitt lived for 2-1/2 years in France, where he learned the language while he served as a missionary converting the French to the Mormon faith.
Most Embarrassing Moment: Took the family’s Irish Setter dog,“Seamus”, on a 10-hour driving vacation from Massachusetts to Ontario, Canada with the dog placed in a cage put on the car roof. This action, which was and still is against the law in Massachusetts, led to the dog getting very sick. The news media and pet lovers haven’t let him forget it. That incident is a runner-up to Romney having bullied classmates at his Michigan boarding school, as he has admitted.
Skittish in Front of The Public:
With a tendency to stammer and misspeak when interviewed on camera or speaking in front of audiences, Romney in a June campaign appearance with a handful of people in a small diner, couldn’t identify a donut by name and instead called it a “chocolate goodie.” Oh well, maybe, that’s French for donut? “Non.” (No, it isn’t.)