Mitt Romney

A decade ago, while running for Massachusetts governor, Mitt Romney vowed to "preserve and protect a woman's right to choose" abortion.

One of the sharpest dividing lines emerging between President Obama and GOP presidential front-runner Mitt Romney is the budget introduced in Congress by Rep. Paul Ryan, R-Wis., with its sharp cuts in domestic spending and lower tax rates.

Both sides see it as a winning issue for the fall campaign. The Obama campaign likes to call it the "Romney-Ryan budget" — and Romney hasn't objected.

On the campaign trail in Wisconsin, Ryan was a constant presence with Romney before that state's April 3 Republican primary, which Romney won.

The GOP candidates for president have seized on high gas prices as a line of attack against President Obama, largely saying the answer is more domestic oil drilling.

But GOP front-runner Mitt Romney used to have a position seemingly at odds — at least in emphasis — with what he and the other Republicans are now advocating.

As Massachusetts governor, Romney said high gasoline prices "are probably here to stay," and he advocated policies to cut energy demand.

The U.S. House of Representatives is scheduled to vote Thursday on what's known as the Ryan budget, the spending plan from Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan, R-Wis., that among other things changes the structure of Medicare and rewrites the tax code. Presidential candidate Mitt Romney has endorsed the plan, but some are saying his rhetoric on the campaign trail may not match up with at least one reality of the Ryan budget.

Romney said he supported the Ryan budget the day it was unveiled.

"I applaud it," he said. "It's an excellent piece of work, and very much needed."

Instead of taking a victory lap after a big win in Illinois, Mitt Romney's campaign ended up with another gaffe to clean up Wednesday.

It's another furious dash to the finish line as delegate-rich Illinois holds its Republican presidential primary Tuesday.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is looking to increase his delegate lead. And he's still searching for that decisive win over his main rival, former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

Every good political campaign has a motif, from President Obama's "hope" to John McCain's "maverick."

Mitt Romney's brand is still taking shape, yet one word finds its way into nearly every speech he gives.

"I want to restore America to our founding principles," the former Massachusetts governor said in Iowa.

Mississippi and Alabama were big wins for Rick Santorum in the fight for the GOP presidential nomination.

While never considered strong for Mitt Romney, those states further revealed the vulnerabilities of his campaign, specifically, problems identifying with many elements of the Republican base.

The next big contest is Tuesday in Illinois.

It's a state rich in delegates (69) and in something else that should be good news for Romney: more moderate Republicans. But he still needs to connect with even those voters.

For many following the Republican presidential contest, the big question is who's winning.

That's not easily answered if you go only by who has won each state's primary or caucus. But if you measure who's won the most pledged convention delegates, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney is clearly in the lead.

So much so, in fact, that Romney's campaign insists there's no way his rivals can catch up or keep him from getting the 1,144 delegates needed for securing the nomination in Tampa this summer during the Republican National Convention.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney's six primary wins on Super Tuesday didn't come cheap. An NPR analysis shows that last week alone, the Romney campaign and the pro-Romney superPAC combined spent nearly $7 million on TV ads.

Less than $1 million of that was spent by Romney's official campaign, while the pro-Romney superPAC Restore Our Future — which has almost exclusively engaged in negative advertising this year — spent $5.7 million.

That's compared to $220,000 spent on ads last week by the superPAC supporting former Pennsylvania Sen. Rick Santorum.

It's Super Tuesday for the Republican presidential contenders, and 10 states are holding primaries and caucuses.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney hopes he can firm up his front-runner status — a status that, an NPR analysis shows, has so far involved his campaign and a pro-Romney superPAC burying the opposition with negative messages.

Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney notched two big wins Tuesday, upping his Republican presidential delegate count and taking modest-plus momentum into the week leading up to Super Tuesday on March 6.

With the Michigan and Arizona primaries in the history books as Romney's fifth and sixth victories, we're looking ahead to Super Tuesday, when presidential contests will be held in 10 states and 413 delegates will be up for grabs.

Michigan and Arizona hold presidential primaries Tuesday, and in Michigan, where Mitt Romney was born, the race has been as hard-fought as anywhere in the country.

For Romney, the campaign there has been personal. He often evokes the Michigan of his youth, when his father, George, ran American Motors and went on to become a very popular three-term governor.

But does that family legacy mean anything today?

If you were to go to a Romney event in Detroit or Kalamazoo or Traverse City, you'd be almost guaranteed to hear some Romney family history.

Mitt Romney says his experience in private equity taking over troubled companies would make him a good manager of America's economy. So we're reporting on companies that Bain Capital bought while Romney was in charge of the firm. This morning, we told the story of one that went bust. Here's the story of one that succeeded.

How A Private-Equity Firm Turns A Company Around

Mitt Romney had the strongest fundraising among the Republican presidential contenders last month. But a deeper look raises questions about just how strong it is in the long run.

The Romney campaign is unusually reliant on big donors — and weak on small donors.

In one sense, big donors are great. It's a lot quicker and cheaper to raise $2,500 from one person than to get $10 from 250 people. But there's a catch: $2,500 is the legal limit for donations to a candidate's campaign. Once that donor maxes out, you need to find another donor.

Everything about Tuesday's campaign event in southeast Michigan's Shelby Township highlighted that Mitt Romney is a local product running for president.

Songs from Motown and Bob Seger blared. A giant deep-blue Michigan state flag hung stage right. An aide passed out paczki (pronounced "punchkey"), jelly-filled Polish pastries that are a Fat Tuesday tradition in Michigan. Then came the candidate.

What's the best way for Mitt Romney to stop Rick Santorum?

For the answer, we went to someone who has done it before.

Democratic strategist Saul Shorr helped Bob Casey defeat then-Sen. Santorum, R-Pa., in a landslide in 2006. Santorum lost by 18 points.

But Shorr says that was a general election; in a Republican primary, Romney will have a much harder job.

It's the story that continues to, well, dog Republican presidential front-runner Mitt Romney. And, according to some experts, it could jeopardize his standing with voters who care about animals. And yes, it turns out, that is not an insignificant voting bloc.

The incident happened back in 1983, and it's been public since 2007. But it seems that only now a critical mass of voters is hearing it for the first time.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's losses on Tuesday, while not very meaningful in the race to accumulate delegates, have raised questions once again about his ability to inspire passion from his party's base and about his viability in the general election.

Rival Rick Santorum's victories in Colorado, Missouri and Minnesota dealt a setback, if not exactly a body blow, to Romney — whom Santorum routinely dismisses as a candidate with a big machine but no core.

Photo by donkey_hotey via Flickr Creative Commons

Vice President Al Gore used to tell a joke about himself: “Al Gore is so boring, his secret service name is Al Gore.” Well, Republican presidential hopeful Mitt Romney is now under secret service protection, and while we don’t know what his code name will be, the Twitterati have been weighing in with suggestions using the hashtag #romneycodename.

Photo by, Hayn0r, courtesy of Flcikr creative commons

This weekend, newt Gingrich won the South Carolina primary by a two digit margin over Mitt Romney. Or, in the words of the gamer generation, Mitt Romney got “pwned”. Political rhetoric has been forever imbued with fierce competitive language – so it’s only natural that today’s campaigns would borrow psychology and strategy not only from war and sport, but also from the emerging power of games.

Photo by Joeff, courtesy of Flickr creative commons

As news broke that Mitt Romney might not have been the victor in Iowa after all, his campaign reacted diplomatically, with a statement acknowledging a virtual tie between him and rick Santorum. But diplomacy, especially when it comes to pledges on foreign policy, has been one of the things found lacking in Romney’s campaign messaging, especially from the point of view of the global press.

A number of media outlets(including the Boston Globe) noted that Mitt Romney's victory speech after the New Hampshire primary felt more like a general election speech than a nomination contest speech.

Steady Primary Turnout

Jan 10, 2012
Jon Greenberg, NHPR

Polling supervisors describe turnout as steady as the primary gets underway. 

The early birds were waiting outside the  Cawley Middle School when the polls opened at 6.   By 7:30, about 300 people had cast their ballots.

Hooksett resident Diana Brighton picked Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney.

“Well, I think he can beat Obama and I like his politics.”

Electability and the prospect of defeating the current president were reasons given often by Romney voters. 

But former Utah Governor Jon Huntsman was the choice for Sam Knowles.

Republican Presidential Candidates Make Last Push

Jan 9, 2012


Mitt Romney spent his Monday focusing vote-rich southern New Hampshire. He started at a chamber of commerce breakfast Nashua, where a comment he made about choice in health care,

“I like being able to fire people who provide services to me,”

became a late-breaking flashpoint.  Democrats and republicans rivals Newt Gingrich, Rick Perry and Jon Huntsman all piled on. So much so that at Romney’s next stop in Hudson he called a press conference, his first since the Iowa caucuses, to defuse the matter.

Tracy Lee Carroll, NHPR. File photo

The primary trail is busy again, with Iowa in the rearview mirror and just days before Granite Staters cast their votes.

NHPR's Josh Rogers shares the latest from the trail with All Things Considered host Brady Carlson, including what Mitt Romney and Rick Santorum are doing as they hope to build on the results of the Iowa caucuses.

Campaigning in New Hampshire, Republican Mitt Romney accused President Obama of creating a bad business climate.

Romney said the President’s policies are designed to help his political allies more than the country as a whole.

He told voters in Salem that President Obama packed the National Labor Relations Board with union stooges; that he used the stimulus to repay public sector unions, and that the President backed green jobs initiatives to benefit supporters at companies like Solyndra.

McCain's Street Cred Aids Romney

Jan 4, 2012
Jon Greenberg, NHPR

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney is benefiting from the endorsement of Arizona senator John McCain.  Some voters are ready to translate their trust in McCain into a vote for Romney.

John McCain has long been popular in New Hampshire.  He trounced George W. Bush in the 2000 primary and edged out Mitt Romney in 2008.  At a packed event in the historic Peterborough town hall, McCain urged people to get behind his former rival.

NH Watches Iowa

Jan 3, 2012
Ann Althouse - Blog via Flickr Creative Commons

Tonight, all eyes are on Iowa.  Tomorrow, they will shift to New Hampshire.  The presidential candidates never fail to remind Granite State voters of the unique role they play.  Much is made of Yankee independent thinking, but it would be a mistake to overlook how the outcome in Iowa can shape the results in New Hampshire.

Some voters relish the task of picking the next potential president.  Matt McCormack isn’t one of them.

“I actually have not paid much attention to this point.”

Politicians and journalists always run a risk when they judge a voter strictly on on appearances.

There was a reminder of that Monday when Mitt Romney was forced to defend his opposition to gay marriage during a restaurant encounter with a grizzled Vietnam veteran who happened to be gay.

As it turned out the vet, Bob Garon, also was sitting at a restaurant booth with his husband when the unsuspecting Romney, campaigning at the Manchester restaurant, asked if he could sit down with them.