Republican Party Senator Mitt Romney of Utah took office in January 2019. He was born Willard Mitt Romney on March 12, 1947, in Detroit, Michigan. Before becoming Senator, he already had a long history in politics and a successful business career. His open affiliation with the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has raised the profile of the Mormon Church in American politics.
Let’s have a look at the top 10 most interesting facts about Mitt Romney.
Mitt Romney Facts
1. The Romney family has a distinguished history in politics.
George Romney, Mitt Romney’s father, was chairman and president of the American Motor Corporation between 1954 and 1962. An interesting fact about Mitt Romney is that his political career started in 1961 when he participated in a constitutional convention to re-write the Michigan Constitution. In 1963, he was sworn in as the 43rd governor of Michigan – a Republican in a Democrat stronghold. He ran for the Republican Party’s presidential nomination in 1968 but was defeated by Richard Nixon, who went on to become president. Romney senior and Nixon didn’t see eye-to-eye, and when Nixon was re-elected in 1973, he resigned from politics to promote volunteerism.
2. Senator Romney is a practicing Mormon.
Romney and his family are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also known as the Mormon Church. In 1966, he interrupted his studies at Stanford to undertake a Mormon mission campaign in France. Romney returned home after being seriously injured in a car accident. He married his high school sweetheart, Ann Davies in 1969 and they have five sons, and twenty-four grandchildren. His sons also all became missionaries, as his father, grandfather and great grandfather had been before him. He remained active in the church, later serving as a bishop and then stake president.
3. Harvard counts Mitt Romney amongst its alumni.
On Romney’s return from France, he completed his bachelor’s degree at Brigham Young University and later attended Harvard, where he earned a JD/MBA. The Senator sat and passed the bar exam in Michigan, but he has never practiced law and intended it only as a fall back if his business career didn’t work out, an interesting fact about Mitt Romney.
4. Before politics, Senator Romney was a successful businessman.
Bain Capital, one of the most successful private equity investment firms in the country, was co-founded by Mitt Romney in 1984. Before this, he was CEO of Bain Consulting where he saved the firm from financial crisis. Bain Capital invested successfully in well-known companies like Dunkin’ Donuts and Staples. They and their partners made $700 million profit on the sale of Experian and more than $1 billion on Italy’s Seat Pagine Gialle. Deals like these made the management of the company extremely wealthy, and the Senator’s net worth is conservatively estimated at $250 million.
5. Romney rescued the 2002 Winter Olympic Games in Salt Lake.
In 1995, Salt Lake City won the bid to host the 2002 Winter Olympics. But in 1998, the organizing committee was accused of having bribed members of the International Olympic Committee to secure the bid. The two men heading up the organizing committee resigned immediately and were followed by a number of others.
An interesting fact about Mitt Romney is that he was brought in to head up and reorganize the committee. He successfully won back the trust of sponsors and ensured the event went ahead to become one of the most successful Olympic Games ever. Independent investigations into the Salt Lake City Olympic scandal found that nothing technically illegal had taken place, but measures were put in place to govern Olympic bid activities going forward.
6. Governor of Massachusetts from 2003 to 2007.
As Governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney secured nearly universal health care for Massachusetts residents and a university bursary program for needy students. His conservative fiscal policies were responsible for resolving the state’s budget woes by reducing a $3 billion deficit. Romney took a conservative stance in other areas, too, including opposing gay marriage. When the Massachusetts Supreme Court upheld the legality of same-sex marriages in 2003, he tried unsuccessfully to bring it to the ballot.
7. Romney was a candidate for two presidential runs in 2008 and 2012.
In 2008, Romney campaigned for nomination as the Republican presidential nominee but withdrew in favor of Senator John McCain. In 2012, he successfully won the Republican nomination but was beaten to the presidency by the Democratic Party nominee, Barack Obama. If he had won, he would have been the first Mormon president, an interesting fact about Mitt Romney. There were rumors that he would run again in 2016, but he chose not to.
8. He is a published author.
Mitt Romney is author of a number of books, and a contributor to many more. In 2004, his book on the Salt Lake City Olympic Games, “Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership, and the Olympic Games” was published. In 2010 he published his book entitled “No Apology: The Case for American Greatness”. And in 2011, “Believe in America: Mitt Romney’s Plan for Jobs and Economic Growth” hit the shelves. He has also written several Mormon spiritual journals and co-authored a book with his wife Ann, “Simple Truths for an Abundant Life: From One Generation to Another.”
9. The Senator is a cancer survivor.
At age 70, Senator Romney was treated surgically for prostate cancer. He kept his diagnosis secret until after the surgery was performed. The cancer was found not to have spread, and doctors judged his prognosis to be good.
10. He voted to convict Donald Trump.
Mitt Romney is, so far, the only Senator in history to vote to remove a president of their own party, an interesting fact about Mitt Romney. In Donald Trump’s impeachment trial, he voted to convict Trump of abuse of power. Romney has long been a vocal detractor of Trump. Way back in March 2016, Romney referred to Trump as a “a phony, a fraud.”
Senator Mitt Romney is an important figure in American politics. I hope that this article on Mitt Romney facts was helpful. If you are interested, visit the Historical People Facts Page!