29/Jan/2015 // 304 Viewers
our campaigns for the primary vote, we tend to go to the audiences that
vote in a Republican primary and tend therefore not to be as involved
in minority communities as we need to be to win the general election,"
the 2012 Republican presidential nominee told an audience at Mississippi
"And so we got to
stop thinking so much about the primary and start thinking more about
making sure we have people that support us in the general election," he
He followed up saying he
wasn't urging Republicans to spend less time thinking about the primary
but to devote equal amount of attention to "all audiences."
who's considering yet another presidential bid, made no mention of
where he is in his thought process about a third campaign, but said he
felt confident that "the great days of America have not ended; they're
ahead with the right kind of leadership."
his speech, Romney hit on familiar refrains about nostalgia from his
campaign as well as challenges facing the country. He also wove in
swipes against Clinton, who's widely considered the Democratic
frontrunner if she runs for president.
If Romney runs again, he's likely to make anti-poverty policy a key part of his message.
said the war on poverty that started under President Lyndon B. Johnson
"came from a good heart" but argued "the policies weren't as good as the
To address the problem,
Romney argued that the government should not create incentives for
people to avoid marriage, saying a single mother on Medicaid or other
assistance may not want to get married because she could lose her
"If marriage ... is essential to helping
people to stay out of poverty, then we want to do the opposite," he
said. "We want to create incentives for them to get married, not to not
He also said K-12
education needs to improve, and he encouraged creating incentives for
people to hire workers who haven't worked before, but didn't outline
Romney is also looking straight past his potential GOP rivals and sharpening his attacks against Hillary Clinton.
argued that the former secretary of state was "clueless" on relations
with Russia and would prove inept on economic policy if elected
"How can Secretary Clinton
provide opportunity for all if she doesn't know where jobs come from in
the first place?" Romney said.
He also argued that Clinton helped contribute to Obama's "timid" approach to foreign policy.
of State Hillary Clinton cluelessly pressed a reset button for Russia,
which smiled and then invaded Ukraine, a sovereign nation," Romney said.
RELATED: Hillary Clinton stands by 'Russian reset' in face of recent events
Romney was headed to Mississippi, the nation's poorest state, his
political team fought back against perceptions that his wealth could be a
political liability if he runs for president again, arguing that
Clinton is no model for modest living, either.
going to be hard for Hillary Clinton to make Mitt Romney's wealth a
fruitful line of attack, with her multi-million dollar mansions in
Georgetown and Chappaqua and her jet-setting lifestyle of the rich and
famous," a Romney aide said Wednesday.
That comment was also included in a new report by the Boston Globe that details how Romney purchased or built two new homes after his 2012 election loss. The former private equity CEO, whose wealth became an overriding theme for Democratic attacks, has a total of four homes: a mansion in La Jolla, California; a ski chalet in Park City, Utah; a large home in Salt Lake City; and a house on Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire.
The home in La Jolla, complete with a car elevator, has been undergoing renovations to make it bigger since 2012, and according the Globe, is now being shown to potential buys by a broker.
Correct the Record, the pro-Clinton communications and research PAC, pushed back against Romney's response Wednesday.
"While Mitt Romney tries in vain to reinvent himself as a friend to those who are struggling, Hillary Clinton is continuing her life-long work to lift up the middle class and level the playing field for all Americans," said Adrienne Elrod, communications director for the group, said in an email to CNN.
RELATED: Jeb Bush's invisible man strategy
Romney was constantly playing defense against multi-million dollar Democratic campaigns that pilloried his corporate background and painted him as out of touch. He also sought to overcome a string of gaffes―i.e. "I like being able to fire people" and "I have some great friends who are NASCAR team owners"―that Democrats quickly used as fuel for their fire against the then-GOP nominee.
A spokesman for Clinton did not immediately return a request for comment.
The former secretary of state, widely seen as the Democratic frontrunner if she runs for president, has fought her own battle against accusations of being out of touch, in part because of her six-figure speaking fees and because of comments she made last summer in which she argued that her family was "dead broke" after leaving the White House.
Romney's $50,000 honorarium (minus travel costs) is being donated to Charity Vision, a restorative eyesight organization based in Provo, Utah.