Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney played a major role in saving the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City, Utah, and he will have a chance to re-invoke that aura of success when the London Olympics begins Aug. 27.
Romney took over as CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee in 1999 after scandal and financial woes raised concern that the games might have to be moved. He ran the operation like a business and turned things around.
Now Romney can reinforce his credentials as a leader and manager as he seeks to unseat President Barack Obama, Politico
reports. The presidential campaigns should be largely in a lull during the Olympics, giving Romney a chance to shine as he attends the games with his wife Ann.
Liz Mair, online communications director for the Republican National Committee during the 2008 election, says the Olympics gives Romney a chance to present himself in a very positive light.
“Romney really demonstrated that he was capable of coming in and shutting down corruption, cleaning things up,” she told Politico. “I think possibly Romney’s greatest asset as a candidate is that while there are a lot of things that are negative about Mitt Romney, one thing you can’t say is that he lacks moral fiber or lacks ethics or is ethically challenged.”
Ari Fleischer, former press secretary for George W. Bush, and now a sports communications strategist, also sees opportunity for Romney in London. “The fact that he’s attending the games is deliberate to showcase his résumé as a fixer — smart move,” Fleisher told Politico.
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