April 18th, 2013
07:25 PM ET
1 year ago

Romney: Obama gave a 'superb' speech

(CNN) - Former Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney praised President Barack Obama's remarks on Thursday at an interfaith service remembering victims of the Boston Marathon bombing.

In an interview on CNN's "The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer," Romney also stressed the importance of learning from such terror attacks and opened up about how his faith plays a role in times of crisis.

"I thought the president gave a superb address to the people of this city and the state and the nation," the former Massachusetts governor said. "It was an inspiring day."

Romney has deep ties to Boston. He ran his presidential campaign from the city and now serves as a chairman of a committee for the Boston-based Solamere Capital, the investment firm founded by his eldest son, Tagg.

Democratic Gov. Deval Patrick invited Romney to attend the church ceremony, along with other current and former Bay State politicos. Romney and the president did not speak at the event, the former GOP nominee said.

In the interview, Romney repeatedly emphasized a need to learn everything possible from Monday's bombings, which killed three people and injured 180 others.

The FBI released video footage of two suspects on Thursday and asked the public for help in identifying them.

"This is a learning opportunity," Romney said. "We should learn the lessons that come from this and apply them to the extent that we possibly can."

Asked if he would consider working on a security commission to study the terror attack and design steps to avert future attacks, Romney said he wouldn't turn away from a call to prevent violence.

He pointed to his experience leading the 2002 Winter Olympics and the security measures installed in Salt Lake City.

He also referenced his time serving on the Homeland Security Advisory Council, a panel comprised of a range of leaders from both the private and public sector who advise the secretary of homeland security, under the George W. Bush administration.

"In my heart of hearts, what I understand is, it is intelligence work. And by intelligence, it's not just meaning the CIA and the FBI and wire taps. It is also people who are watching what's going on, reporting what's going on, combing that information such that we can prevent the worse things that are occurring," he said.

Romney, who belongs to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, also gave a rare glimpse into his faith and how he sees the role of God and free will

Asked why he thinks bad things happen to good people, he said the only answer he knows for that type of question is to "get on one's own knees and to pray for understanding and for comfort."

"I believe very deeply that we have a creator and that he loves us and cares for us. But when he actually intervenes in the affairs of the people on this earth - it's something that happens only rarely - and when that happens and why that happens and who that happens to is something that we don't understand," he said.

Romney said he also gains strength from seeing the community come together during tragedy and talked about his visits with injured victims in Boston hospitals on Thursday.

"This is a time when your faith in God is enhanced by seeing the goodness of the men and women He's created," he said.

Referring to the interfaith service, Romney said it was an "inspiring" and lauded the singing of "America the Beautiful," a song he was known to sometimes sing on the campaign trail.

"It was a hearty rendition."

Watch The Situation Room with Wolf Blitzer weekdays at 4pm to 6pm ET and Saturdays at 6pm ET. For the latest from The Situation Room click here.

soundoff (269 Responses)
  1. counterww

    I bet the haters will come out now.....

    April 18, 2013 11:35 pm at 11:35 pm |
  2. johnson sanger

    romney needs to shut up, 2012 is over, he is not relevant anymore and needs to go back to whatever hole he crawled out of.

    April 18, 2013 11:39 pm at 11:39 pm |
  3. BlindChange

    Always a class act!!

    April 18, 2013 11:40 pm at 11:40 pm |
  4. Jneuy

    Guess Romney isn't the devil the liberal media wanted to make. Congrats , you won. And America is going south.

    April 18, 2013 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  5. Kevin

    Very classy Mr.Rommney. Shows you are a man of your word and a man of god. Its not a time to bash but a time to pray to god. Well done Very well done

    April 18, 2013 11:47 pm at 11:47 pm |
  6. chris

    I may not agree with Mr. Romneys political veiws or his personal choice of faith, but putting aside politics and coming together to support the injured and mourn the dead is a damn classy thing to do. Well done Mr. Romney, well done.

    April 18, 2013 11:49 pm at 11:49 pm |
  7. Tony

    The fact that they quote Romney is a indication of how bad off the Republican Party is. Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, and other Republicans in Washington don't offer any leadership.

    April 18, 2013 11:50 pm at 11:50 pm |
  8. sarah

    I thought losing the election meant we'd never have to hear from this bozo again.

    April 18, 2013 11:51 pm at 11:51 pm |
  9. kenny

    after reading this i can't help but think if romney talked/acted like that during the election... he would've won... because he sounds real... like his true self... his campaign felt soooo fake and forced and not the real him and shady. He said what his party says ... not what he truly thinks. I hope he learns from his lessons too...

    April 18, 2013 11:52 pm at 11:52 pm |
  10. Harley Leiber

    this guy is no more a Bostonian than his grandfather was a Mexican...

    April 18, 2013 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  11. josh f

    govenor romney is a class act and a true american.

    April 18, 2013 11:54 pm at 11:54 pm |
  12. Leo

    Really? His faith? Romney prays to an Alien God who lives on an alternate planet made entirely of glass called Kolob. Romney's religion was started by a con-artist-communist from the 19th century. I guess if the people had worn the Mormon's magical underwear they would have been shielded from the evil that day right?

    April 18, 2013 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm |
  13. Steve

    I think in times like these it's more important than ever to come together across the aisle and find good solutions to the problem of violence. With the invitation by Deval Patrick and the words of Mitt Romney, it looks like at least some people are getting the idea that there are things that matter more than political affiliation.

    April 18, 2013 11:59 pm at 11:59 pm |
  14. BOB

    ATTABOY MITT,
    Time for healing...

    April 19, 2013 12:03 am at 12:03 am |
  15. Mr. Shabazz

    I'm glad. Even Mr. Romney knows that this is not a time for partisan politics.

    April 19, 2013 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  16. bearitstrong

    Mitt... thanks for acting like a decent human being.

    April 19, 2013 12:06 am at 12:06 am |
  17. Judith

    The President's words were moving, articulate and inspiring. I am so proud to have voted for him twice.

    April 19, 2013 12:10 am at 12:10 am |
  18. winchester74

    While CNN is covering Romney's reaction to Obama's speech why don't they also cover Britney Spears reaction to the speech? The opinions of these two celebrities s are equally relevant and meaningful.

    April 19, 2013 12:13 am at 12:13 am |
  19. f6i6s6t

    Regardless of motive, we are all in this together.

    April 19, 2013 12:14 am at 12:14 am |
  20. LattieK

    It's wonderful, in a time of crisis. to see an opposition member being a perfect gentleman. I am a democratic, but I thank you Mr. Romney for understanding that, in a time of crisis, we need to stand together. God Bless.

    April 19, 2013 12:15 am at 12:15 am |
  21. RandyKC

    I would be nice to see Republicans and Democrats work together. I'm glad that Romney took this oportunity to be positive and I hope something comes of it.

    April 19, 2013 12:19 am at 12:19 am |
  22. rudedog

    We need to come together during this terrible time. Glad Romney's hearing has improved.

    April 19, 2013 12:20 am at 12:20 am |
  23. JDinHouston

    Rather nice... inspiring to hear one politician talk about another as having said the right things... that is America. The hate an rancor of Rush and others is what divides us, but refreshing to hear the words of Romney and Obama today to remind us there is far more that unites us.

    April 19, 2013 12:20 am at 12:20 am |
  24. Jack

    It is nice to see people come together, Mr. Romney thank you for being gracious!

    April 19, 2013 12:21 am at 12:21 am |
  25. freedom

    Superb? Not so much.

    April 19, 2013 12:22 am at 12:22 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11