Idaho Falls, Idaho (CNN) - In a speech to his largest audience in recent memory Thursday, Mitt Romney pledged that he would never embarrass the American people in the White House.
That assurance - which the campaign previously deployed against Newt Gingrich in Iowa - appeared to be a veiled swipe against the Republican presidential slate at large.
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"What we need in leadership is individuals who will tell the truth and will live with integrity," Romney told the raucous audience. "I will not embarrass you in the White House."
In the run-up to Michigan's primary, Romney's chief rival, former Sen. Rick Santorum, had to massage a number of controversial statements on social issues. He said he regretted saying John F. Kennedy's defense of the separation between church and state made him want to "throw up" and provoked ire with comments about women serving in the military.
Recently Romney himself has had to clean up a series of verbal gaffes, including a flubbed response to a question about a Republican-backed congressional amendment and two casual references to his wealth that provoked his opponents' glee.
Romney's appearance in Idaho Falls was met with wild applause by the more than 2,500 people who turned out to Skyline High School to cheer on the GOP presidential candidate.
He gave speeches in each of the high school's two gyms, after the campaign set up an overflow room to accommodate the audience. The school choir and band played energetic music in the first room, where rock climbing walls rose along the wall behind the stage.
"The Grizzlies basketball games must be something in here. I'll tell ya, that kind of cheering is exciting," Romney told the raucous audience. "You seem to be more than slightly inclined to support my candidacy, is that right?"
After several appearances in which he focused largely on the economy, on Thursday Romney revived oft-repeated musings on patriotism.
He recalled working as a teenager on his uncle's Idaho ranch.
"We worked hard. But I loved the life here in Idaho. I loved the working on the ranch. I loved the people that I got to meet," Romney said, adding as a boy his father had spent time in the state as well. "He said he had potatoes for breakfast, lunch and dinner. He was kind of poor at that time, but he ended up doing pretty darn well. He believed in America."
This was Romney's second visit to Idaho in as many weeks.
Idaho Falls is home to a large Mormon population. The state's primary will be held March 6.
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No, you certainly will not embarrass us because you will NEVER be elected president besides youou have already embarrassed yourself and your family in so many ways that there's no turning back.
How's your dog flip flopper?
Mittens is a complete embarrassment, not only to his crazy party, but to our country. Mitt is unfit.
Embarrass the American people? Gee Romney, you are did a great job embarrassing yourself the contraception bill. You are running for President, you don't get a do-over once you sign something into law.
He already is an embarrassment.
so he'll continue to embarrass the American people all over the campaign trail, but if he reached the White House it would all stop!? very interesting....
He already has, he is the hit for foot in mouth disease that the world is laughing at.
Of course you won't Willard you will never occupy the White House.
A President Romney would assuredly "embarass" the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party.
They have no choice but to vote for him ; Santorum & Gingrinch won`t survive the primary process and would be destoyed in a general election. Romney will go along to fool the Tea Party and then embarass & betray them.
He embarrassed himself twice today: a flip-flop on the Blunt amdendment and, according to his "wisdom," saying that the President did not deserve credit for domestic energy. Mitt, should the President also, according to you, not take credit for getting Osama Bin Laden,too? Now. what Mitt really can give himself credit for is suggesting that Detroit go Bankrupt.
"You seem to be more than slightly inclined to support my candidacy, is that right?" Way to fire them up WIllard! You're about as exciting as a coma patient
Of that 2,500 – only half of them will STILL support him by November. The man is nuttier than a fruitcake and slimier than okra.
Let Bain Capital go broke.
you realize the Blunt bill is just the 1st step. There are moral issues with allowing someone to die in hospital too. Would that mean health insurances would not pay the medical bills if someone a spouse/doctor allows a patient to die? Who defines “on moral grounds”????
This guy changes his words depending on who he talks to. When he addresses the evangelical conservatives he talks like he is a hard core conservatives who favors religious bigotry along with Santorum/Gingrich. When Romney talks to the middle class people, he tries to make like he's one of them. When he talks to people who are not evangelical, he plays downs the religious bigotry he was doing. And now the Blunt bill? While there is no way in hell I would vote for Santorum or Gingrich, Romney just lost my vote. He should have stayed down the middle on religious values. He might have gotten more of the non- evangelical conservatives.
Apparently, all the Republican frontrunners are trying to get anything truly embarassing out in the prior to the election. That way if, God forbid, one of these offal eating hyenas actually become President nothing worse could be brought up.
Guys, I'm not sure you have thought this entire process through. With all the mud and muck you have thrown so far, a resourceful Democratic staffer will find a few nuggets worth a little more polishing in front of the American voters.
Willard is starting to look more and more like Lady McBeth; he protests about President Obama a tad too much. Also, that greenish tinit of envy doesn't do anything for anybody's complexion. Maybe his mother-wife Ann and expert spokeswoman, Andrea Saul could help him with concealing make-up.
you do not have to worry about embarrass, since you will not be in the white house ever.
He's a continuous embarrassment. How's running for office SEVERAL years in a row doing there, MItty? LOL
He embarrassed Team Romney to the point of panic and did a 180-turn in less than an hour after the interview on the Blunt Amendment. Even worse, Andrea Saul tried to spin that the question was confusing–no way–he clearly said he was not for it. And to embarrass himself even further, he, criticized the President when the Amendment got killed. The only way he can not embarrass himself is to either stay 100% on script or let his sweetheart Ann do all the tallking–especially to the reporters that she will allow to stay on the Romney bus.
If he's been a non-stop embarrassement just about every other day during the campaign how is going to go gaff-free in the oval office? Last time I checked, a leopard doesn't change it's spots. No denying that Team Romney has its hands full with him.
Romney is starting to sound as ridiculous as Santorum–more domestic energy issues got taken care of under President Obama than George Bush (Fox Five might not agree, of course). Mitt, more successful liars don't tell the kind of lies that Santorum does–he sounds like he's on the front page of super-market check-out newspapers; you've had a better education, you should spin better, too.
What's a world-wide embarrassment is how the House Republicans, especially Mitch McConnell and Grover Norquist try to do, even to the point of voting against bills the Republicans would traditionally support. Karl Rove is at wit's end with how he can't sell Willard to the American people.
What about a pledge not to embarrass himself first? He is an absolute gaffe machine. The right does not trust him because they know once he gets the nomination, he will tack hard to the center.
I cannot stand how aggressive he is about Obama in light of the fact that he used to share all the same opinions. The hard right will be disappointed (but they know that) once he gets the nomination and tacks to the middle. He can he run a country? He has been an absolute failure as a candidate.
Embarrassment??? How about the EMBARRASSMENT OF RICHES that you got for yourself at Bain? It' s not so much that you are envied for your money (and among the truly shallow people at that), rather it's that you are loathsome for saying anything to get to the Oval Office. Santorum and Gingrich are horrible too, but at least they believe in what they are saying.
The simple fact that a person like this could even get a sniff of the Oval Office is an embarrassment to the U.S in the face of the world.