Speech prep: Ann Romney's wisecracks, welsh cakes and wardrobe
August 28th, 2012
12:41 PM ET
2 years ago

Speech prep: Ann Romney's wisecracks, welsh cakes and wardrobe

Tampa, Florida (CNN) – Hours before she was to introduce her husband to millions of voters tuned into the GOP convention, Ann Romney joked to reporters she would present her remarks in a way those obsessed with social media could understand.

"The speech is being reduced to a tweet," Mrs. Romney teased her husband's traveling press corps in a lighthearted conversation on the couple's flight to Tampa.

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The wife of the Republican presidential candidate seemed to be working through any jitters with wisecracks and a lot of baking. On the plane, she handed out Welsh cakes made from her grandmother's recipe. She had spent the previous day churning out hundreds of the moist and chewy treats.

Political analysts are looking to Mrs. Romney, who finished writing her speech days ago, to address concerns about her husband's perceived stiffness by presenting him in a more personal, softer light.

She has often played that role in campaign events - reminiscing about growing up with a younger Mitt in Michigan, for example, or recounting how she raised five mischievous sons.

Tuesday night will bring a new level of scrutiny and stagecraft.

"I've never given a speech like this before, but I'm excited," she said.

Less than an hour after she landed in Tampa, Mrs. Romney was standing onstage in the convention hall to familiarize herself with the set-up.

One challenge she may face Tuesday night could be sticking to the scripted remarks.

"I think you will see that my speech is heartfelt, and I think a lot of you have been covering me long enough and you know I've never gone off a written text," she said, laughing. "So this is a unique experience for me, to actually have something written because I've never used it, no one has ever written a speech for me."

Mrs. Romney also admitted she found it difficult to read from a teleprompter - a skill she practiced alongside husband over the weekend.

In the build-up to her highly-anticipated address, even her wardrobe had become a ticklish topic, she said.

"The funniest thing of all is that [Romney strategist] Stuart Stevens, who wears his shirts inside-out, is advising me on what dress I should wear tonight," Mrs. Romney laughed. "So I know I've come really full-circle now."

Stevens worked with both Romneys on their speeches this weekend at their Wolfeboro home. When the couple ventured out to a nearby high school to practice speaking in a larger venue, Stevens was spotted wearing gray capri pants.

Mrs. Romney said she had never expected both her husband and other campaign advisers to weigh in on her fashion choices.

"It was going to be like my wedding night; I wasn't going to let him know what I was going to wear," she said. "But now they have opinions."


Filed under: 2012 • Ann Romney • Florida • Republican National Convention
soundoff (130 Responses)
  1. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    She should also include some of that Dressage humor that will have the rich rolling in the aisles. Car elevator humor is another strong point of Ann.

    August 28, 2012 12:45 pm at 12:45 pm |
  2. cali girl

    Wonder how many times she will say "You People"?

    August 28, 2012 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  3. Howard

    I have nothing but respect and admiration for Ann Romney. She has shown courage and grace in beating cancer ... fighting M.S. ... assisting numerous charities ... and raising 5 boys. In 2008, obama promised transparency ... to fix our economy ... to defend our constitution. In 2008 Americans were deceived by obama, and sold a bill of goods. Everyone got so swept up by his soaring rhetoric ... so that unfortunately, when the honeymoon was soon over, we were left with a FAR left ideologue, who ran this country into the ground. Therefore, those who voted for obama in 2008, at least had an excuse, of not knowing any better ... BUT, anybody who falls for his B.S. in 2012, is just a fool and a sucker, whose gullible lack of judgement will bring down this country ... beyond repair. America is MORE important than obama ... obama is replaceable ... America is not !!! SAVE AMERICA ... ROMNEY/RYAN 2012 !!!

    August 28, 2012 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  4. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Personally, I think jokes about the less fortunate, birther jokes, and divisiveness will play well for her.

    August 28, 2012 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  5. lolo

    So darn rich she can't even read from a teleprompter. This is going to be fun. She thinks that she is running for president also. If she is speaking from the heart about her husband she should not be worrying about a teleprompter. Ah, rich people just don't have a clue.

    August 28, 2012 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  6. Chumlee

    "you people" – that is Ann Romney. Do not let it escape you – she has no use for the average person,
    DID NOT RAISE 5 CHILDREN – the nannies did!, and could care less about America.

    Case in point: how much money have the Romneys tucked away in off-shore accounts in order to avoid
    US taxes. And these people say they speak for the American people? They care about America?

    Come on voters – wake up and smell the stench

    August 28, 2012 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  7. Tree

    Really.....these are not jokes people laugh when its a joke hehe not clap.......I have nothing against her but she is not the one. Howard save American yea right..........you are beyond repairs.

    August 28, 2012 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  8. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Howard – Are you aware that Mittens has a transparency problem? His records as governor in MA were erased, his $1.2 billion payouts in the Salt Lake Olympics were shredded, his record while owner at Bain from 1999-2001 are gone, he refuses to release his taxes, he won't disclose his foreign donors, he has over $100 million in an IRA, and he keeps huge sums of money in overseas accounts.

    August 28, 2012 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  9. julie

    "you people" have seen enough of our taxes now– peasants– now be sure to vote for my husband–then take a hike
    commoners

    OMITT MITT 2012

    August 28, 2012 01:04 pm at 1:04 pm |
  10. Pete

    Yah,Ann will speak down to the lesser class minions,the ones who'll cherish this moment forever.The ones that ignorently believe she's so hard working raising her five sons,with nannies,maids and others help mind you!!How yesterday she said she went shopping for Mitts shirts at Costco,yah after they cleared out the store with their security,no shopping with common folk,we as Romneys dare not!!Make sure the evangelicals are up front at the convention,we definitly don't want heathens near our religious speakers on stage..How many mormons are coming,I hear many a church is emptying just for Romney a first for a presidencial candidates as a Mormon elitist...I wonder if women protesters will be out in force,they should after Romneys,Ryan stances on the abortion issues,much like Sen.Akins,they're not stating what they really mean just their way of pandering to keep the women calm that's all!!I'm glad as a democrate the conventions a day shorter,I'm sick of their hypocritical stances and need a little tropical storm to let them know they're really not as in command as they think!!Issac do your stuff buddy on Tampa,I give you my blessing,rain baby rain!!!

    August 28, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  11. TY

    This women is second class in the morman world, so she will do and say anything for Romnay. She can not think on her own. Yea she beat cancer and MS because she had the monies for the best of everthing which i don't knock. However she is a FAKE and want us to believe that she knows the middle class. She been in her own world and can not see beyond it. Yea she had five kids so what........ There something about her is not REAL.....just like her hubby.....

    August 28, 2012 01:06 pm at 1:06 pm |
  12. Julie Branom

    I have no respect for Ann Romney at all. As an LDS woman I find it hard to watch another LDS woman allowing her husband and supporting his choice to violate his priesthood role and his temple recommend requirement of being honest with all his doings. We are called to be not only honest but completely honest. Can she honestly say that about her husband. It sickens me to watch this charade of being true to values that they do not have. If you can violate your oath to Heavenly Father and his son Jesus Christ, what kind of oath would he respect as President. I am sickened by all the members of the church that embrace this man who is nothing more than as Alma the younger said than a Child of the Devil. He has no moral compass and if she supports him neither does she. Many would say "politicians all lie". But a man who holds the holy priesthood should then choose not to be a politician, not violate his sacred oath that he has taken with Heavenly Father. Her support shows her support of his evil ways. She is not respectable.

    August 28, 2012 01:07 pm at 1:07 pm |
  13. gg

    "Let them eat cake!"

    August 28, 2012 01:08 pm at 1:08 pm |
  14. Sueb

    Ann Romney is more unlikable than her husband, in my opinion. She comes across as pampered, elitist and almost as stiff as her husband. Her 'you people' remark and her feigned outrage at we, small-minded people asking to see their tax returns speaks volumes about her. Release your tax returns!!! What are you hiding?!?

    August 28, 2012 01:09 pm at 1:09 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    She really needs to stay out of the limelight. Mitt Romney needs to stand on his own merit, not on his wife's shoulders.

    August 28, 2012 01:10 pm at 1:10 pm |
  16. Al-NY,NY

    Mrs. Romney also admitted she found it difficult to read from a teleprompter – a skill she practiced alongside husband over the weekend.
    ---------–

    so does her husband..but you won't see any tightie rightie admitting their guy uses one. It's always "Obama and the teleprompter" The good little Stepford wife handing out cookies...isn't that just precious? Was she wearing her flowered apron and sensible shoes?

    August 28, 2012 01:15 pm at 1:15 pm |
  17. Four and The Door

    Rudy NYC
    She really needs to stay out of the limelight. Mitt Romney needs to stand on his own merit, not on his wife's shoulders.
    _______________________________________________________________________________________________
    Mitt Romney has plenty of merit to stand on. As far as qualifications for the job, he is several notches up from Dr. Downgrade. It's time Americans got serious about who they elect and put in someone capable. Romney/ Ryan 2012.

    August 28, 2012 01:16 pm at 1:16 pm |
  18. Julie Branom

    Who is this woman? A woman who would support such evil ways that her husband continues to exemplify. As an LDS woman I am deeply disturbed not only by her support of her husbands lies, but her support of her husbands violating his sacred oath to Heavenly Father to be honest in all his dealings with his fellow man and disrespecting the priesthood and his temple recommend he holds in order to gain the Office of the Presidency of the United States. I have no respect for them. Many people would say that "politicians always lie". Is that a good enough excuse to violate your core beliefs and oaths. I am disgusted at all the members of the Church who embrace this behavior. I am disturbed by the bearing of false witness, the mocking of ones brother and the lack of compassion that this man and his followers including my fellow members of the church show. I understand now why Christ said that a rich man had very little chance of obtaining the Kingdom of Heaven, it was not impossible, but improbable as this man exemplified by Mitt Romney has the inablity to feel compassion on his fellow man. Nor does Ann Romney. She can not humanize him in any speech as he is less than Human. As Alma the Younger said he is a child of the Devil. I pray for them to find Christ, act in obedience. Let me remind them the 13th Article of Faith. We believe in being honest, true, chaste, benevolent, virtuous, and in doing good to all men; indeed we may say that we follow the admonition of Paul—We believe all things, we hope all things, we have endured many things, and hope to be able to endure all things. If there is anything virtuous, lovely, or of good report or praiseworthy, we seek after these things. Mitt and Ann Romney do not nor do his followers.

    August 28, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  19. GOP = Greed Over People

    Now, Queen Anne Marie Romney needs "you people" to vote for Count Kolob, do so, at your own peril!

    August 28, 2012 01:18 pm at 1:18 pm |
  20. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Ann don't listen to the campaign's fashion advisors. What do they know after all? Look how well your $1000 t-shirts and $10,000 Patek watch have been going over with the cake-eating masses. Especially when you're addressing "those people" and their audacity in wanting to see your income tax returns.
    So I say, and you'll probably agree with me Anniekums, that you should wear one of your Fendi suits, or better yet a Prada. Go ahead and top it off with a Balenciaga fur. So what if it's Tampa! Show them how the 1%ers really roll when the A/C i s on full blast!
    And please, don't forget to add a couple of your 2" width gold bangles. Gold shines so beautifully through the natural shine of sable dontchaknow.
    Go get em' Ann! And don't forget to throw a few of those Welsh cakes that you baked last night at the crowd at the end of your speech.
    They'll love that!

    August 28, 2012 01:21 pm at 1:21 pm |
  21. DENNA

    I am sure that Ann Romney is an adorable woman, but she is a spoiled rich woman who cannot relate to ordinary American women. Her sons are quite attractive and they appear to be bright, but I am sure that they won't have to worry about finding work like, say the average American son. Romney/Ryan claim they have a plan, but they are really short on details. I think their only plan is to get into the White House, then proceed to finish off the middle class. Obama grew up poor with a single mother. I doubt that Mitt Romney can relate to that. By the way, wasn't his father in favor of civil rights? What happened to you, Mitt?

    August 28, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  22. bb

    The one word that comes to mind when describing Ann Romney is Fake.

    August 28, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  23. Milton K. Wiah

    And the American press letting this tax return thing is dying down. They are giving this guy a save to the
    presidency with his dubious tax problems.

    August 28, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  24. cali girl

    Howard, you forgot about the therapy horse Rafalca which earns them a $77,000 tax deduction. I have 2 friends with MS and they have to keep working for the health care coverage they desperately need. Neither of them have the luxury of having a therapy horse of their own. or any access to one because they can't afford it. Entitlements are what Ann represents.

    August 28, 2012 01:23 pm at 1:23 pm |
  25. Expat American

    Ann Romney has re-invented ‘You People’ to include all poor and middle class people. She is truly a class act, sitting atop her ballerina horse, just like her husband.

    If Romney was only banking on the vote of multimillionaires, then he would lose by a laughable margin. What I don’t understand are the poor and middle class Republican whites who actually believe that Romney and the GOP care that they won’t be able to feed their families should the ‘Party of Values’ actually win in a parallel universe.

    August 28, 2012 01:26 pm at 1:26 pm |
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