SIMPSONVILLE, SC – Ann Romney had some blunt words for those who don’t vote for her husband Mitt this time around.
“If they don't pick Mitt that's their stupid mistake, not mine,” she jokingly told a crowd at the city hall here, to laughter.
Romney added that she felt more positively about campaigning now than she did when her husband first ran in 2008. (Romney finished fourth in South Carolina, pulling all of his resources out of the state just a few weeks before the primary vote)
“I’ve had a totally different mental change from the last round. And that is, I’m going to enjoy this. A lot. It’s not like I didn’t enjoy it last time. It wasn’t all horrible, really,” she joked. “But I was worried all the time.”
“I'm not worried anymore! Mitt's going to win!” she said to applause.
“I’m going to enjoy meeting all you folks. I’m going to enjoy my trip in the airport. I’m going to enjoy all of it,” she continued.
While she did not defend the former Massachusetts governor on any policy specifics, Romney did say that she gets frustrated when she sees “how things get misrepresented.”
“I am a she-lion when it comes to anyone attacking him, you better look out! I get very, very upset at his being misrepresented.”
She praised her husband as a “turnaround expert,” saying it was time to “get somebody in there who actually knows how to bring about change and how to actually fix things that are broken.”
The rest of her speech was focused on the closeness of her family: she talked about her late father-in-law George Romney, whom she says she misses; her father and great grand-father, Welsh coal miners who emigrated to the United States; and her sixteen grandchildren.
She also told an emotional story about how her husband motivated her to overcome her depression after she was diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis, in 1998.
“I thought, ‘my life is over. I’m finished. This is awful. I can’t spend the rest of my life just being in bed,’” Romney told the crowd of about 60 here. “And Mitt was really amazing during this time. My most difficult time in my life. He would put his arm around me, he’d say, ‘look. There are worse things in life.’”
She said he would say, “We’ve got to remember one thing. You’re still here. We’re still together. Everything’s going to be okay.”
She added that his support “did something to me mentally and emotionally that made me want to fight. And it kicked me into a different gear. I stopped feeling sorry for myself, I stopped being depressed, and I started to fight.
“I’m so grateful for Mitt for being the kind of husband that pulled me through a real crisis in my life,” she continued.
She suggested the anecdote revealed more about her husband’s character than the jobs he’s held. “The job we do doesn't matter, it's who you are.”
Romney will be in South Carolina tomorrow as well, attending a fundraising breakfast for the South Carolina Republican Party and submitting her husband's primary filing paperwork with the state party.
State treasurer Curtis Loftis, a Romney supporter who campaigned with Mrs. Romney all day, said that "people love her" and that "she really humanizes the governor." He said he'd like to see her in South Carolina as much as possible.