Long Before the Rise of Newt and Rick, Romney Was Aware of His Problems

by Robert Costa

Way back in May 2011, Mitt Romney almost decided against a presidential run. 

“I’m going to tell them I’m out,” Tagg Romney recalled his father telling him, according to Dan Balz’s upcoming book. At the time, Romney was frustrated by how conservatives, including editorial writers at the Wall Street Journal and NR, were knocking the Bay State’s health-care program.

Romney confirmed after the election that he called his son one morning to tell him he thought he wasn’t going to run. “I recognized that by virtue of the realities of my circumstances, there were some drawbacks to my candidacy for a lot of Republican voters,” he told Balz in January. “One, because I had a health care plan in Massachusetts that had been copied in some respects by the president, that I would be tainted by that feature. I also realized that being a person of wealth, I would be pilloried by the president as someone who, if you use the term of the day, was in the 1 percent.”

Of course, Romney ultimately shelved those concerns and launched his campaign a month after he called Tagg.



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