Romney: ‘There’s a good shot I might become the next president’
October 20th, 2011
10:01 PM ET
9 years ago

Romney: ‘There’s a good shot I might become the next president’

Treynor, Iowa (CNN) – Mitt Romney on Thursday said he has a "good shot" at becoming president.

At an economic roundtable of business leaders in Treynor, Iowa, the candidate began the question-and-answer session by saying: “Your topics are at your choosing. But there’s a good shot I might become the next president of the United States. It’s not a sure thing, but it’s a good shot.”

Romney continued: “And if I am, I will benefit by having heard from you, your thoughts about what we can do better to encourage your enterprise, or enterprise generally, both on a short-term basis and long term.”

His meeting with business leaders was his second stop of the day in Iowa. Earlier, he campaigned in Sioux City. And after the economic roundtable, Romney met with voters at the Chamber of Commerce in Council Bluffs.

Though Romney has done scant campaigning in the Hawkeye State during this political cycle – this was his first visit since August – polls for Iowa have shown him either leading or maintaining a strong showing.

During his appearances, the former Massachusetts governor waded into myriad issues.

For example, in Treynor, Romney sounded familiar criticism of the Obama administration. “I’m concerned that our current leadership in Washington doesn’t have a fundamental understanding of how our economy works,” he said.

The candidate also reiterated his opposition to the president’s $447 billion jobs bill.

“He’s promoting a stimulus bill,” Romney said. “Look, the first one he put in place three years ago didn’t work. I don’t know why we’d vote for another one. Or agree to another one.”

Though Romney blasted the president’s plan - he did speak glowingly about the need to improve the nation's deteriorating infrastructure. Ironically, that is one central component of the president’s jobs bill.

It happened after Romney received a question from a man in the audience who said he spent most of his work life in the highway contracting industry.

“The first stimulus bill, we built a lot of stimulus projects,” the man said. “As you know, they were a flash in the pan. Now we’re back to the way it was before. I guess one problem we have in our industry is not constant funding of that.”

The man then asked Romney: “I just want to know what your views were on infrastructure, maintenance and development?”

“One of the things you have to have for an economy to work is an ample infrastructure,” Romney responded. “And our infrastructure is antiquated."

Romney continued: “I know in my state of Massachusetts, when I came in they told me we had 550 structurally deficient bridges. I said, ‘You gotta be kidding me. Five hundred and fifty structurally deficient bridges?’ And so we doubled our budget to work on our bridges, from $100 million a year to $200 million a year. But we got a lot more to do in this country to bring our infrastructure up to speed. And I’m looking at a series of proposals, to find ways – whether through public/private partnerships, whether through a special series of revenue streams such as tolls and so forth, to be able to make the investment we’ve got to make in our infrastructure.”

The candidate added: “We’ve got to find a way to rebuild our bridges, to rebuild the roads that were built in the 1950s and 1960s under the Eisenhower interstate highway system, and we’re going to have to improve many of our infrastructure projects.”

That language is not far off from language the president has recently used to promote his jobs plan.

For example, on September 22, Obama visited an old bridge spanning Ohio and Kentucky to talk about the nation’s deteriorating infrastructure.

"There's no reason to stand in the way of more jobs," the president said. "Mr. [House Speaker John] Boehner, Mr. [Senate Minority Leader Mitch] McConnell, help us rebuild this bridge. Help us rebuild America. Help us put this country back to work. Pass this jobs bill right away."

At other times, the president also has pushed the need to rebuild the nation’s crumbling infrastructure.

Follow Shannon Travis on twitter: @ShanTravisCNN

Filed under: 2012 • Iowa • Jobs • Mitt Romney
soundoff (254 Responses)
  1. The Real Tom Paine

    A little early to get fitted for a carving on Mt Rushmore, eh, Mitt? You're not even close to closing the deal with your own party, much less the Independents you need. Once your thin record comes under close scrutiny, the public will treat you like the toxic hypocrite you are, and consign you to the same historic scrap heap your dad resides on.

    October 21, 2011 09:50 am at 9:50 am |
  2. Tannim

    Does America really want a clueless Rockefeller Republican elitist?

    Does MittWitt think America does?

    The answer is no to both.


    October 21, 2011 09:52 am at 9:52 am |
  3. Tex71

    Of the GOP candidates, Romney is the only one who comes across as sane; that said, he is openly pursuing, in word and deed, the conservative "final solution" of reducing the working population of America to economic slavery. NOT a man of the people.

    October 21, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  4. TigerLily194

    First. I am a Republican......... with that said, I wouldn't vote for one of these canidates with the exception of maybe Huntsman. We have scrapped the bottom of the barrel in this election and I am saddend by the fact that no true statesman has stepped forward to take the rein. We have a sad crop of "It's my turn" along with ego's as big as Texas and of course the clowns who think just because they have money or an opinion they can be President. I see none of them with a true calling to be President of this country.. and all would be an embarassment to me. The rule of a true statesman is COUNTRY and PEOPLE FIRST, THE PARTY SECOND an ME LAST! I will be voting as an independent this election and will vote for the best man for the country and not who is popular right now.

    October 21, 2011 09:54 am at 9:54 am |
  5. Kay

    He only has a good shot at not being buried by a landslide, as would happen with any of the other candidates. But he'll still lose. Too many people won't vote for him because he's a Mormon.

    Obama has pretty much already won. The GOP knows it has no chance any more and is now looking towards 2016.

    October 21, 2011 09:58 am at 9:58 am |
  6. billy

    There's a good shot that Romney will say ANYTHING to become President.

    October 21, 2011 09:59 am at 9:59 am |
  7. 2buttercups

    Uh! Uh! Uh! Try agan n 4 years!

    October 21, 2011 10:00 am at 10:00 am |
  8. Mosses K

    Gov Mitt Romney, The 45th President of United States of America

    October 21, 2011 10:02 am at 10:02 am |
  9. Chris Wilder

    He doesn't stand a chance. He's a flip flopper. He is one of the one percent. And he is a Mormon. And he has no vision and little integrity.

    October 21, 2011 10:08 am at 10:08 am |
  10. Terry Gloege

    Can't really argue with this. Just take a gander at the rest of the GOP field and he looks sane in comparison. Then, remember the last republican we elected!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We, as a people, are stupid enough to do nearly anything.

    October 21, 2011 10:10 am at 10:10 am |
  11. Buster Bloodvessel

    This is almost as funny as when he said he was 'unemployed,' or that his sons were fighting terrorism by avoiding the army so they could help him save us from the 'soft on terrorism' president. I bet he intended to have Khadafi as his VP and now he'll have to ask Palin.

    October 21, 2011 10:13 am at 10:13 am |
  12. Independent Voters

    We are not going to elect these republicans they blocking all the job bills to help american.
    Romney could you tell me is it wrong for the congressman and senate to block job bills to help american.

    October 21, 2011 10:14 am at 10:14 am |
  13. Corporations R. People II

    Willard has a better shot of getting his chickletts smacked out of his piehole courtesy of Rick Parry.

    October 21, 2011 10:22 am at 10:22 am |
  14. Bert in UT

    Republicans will oppose any infrastructure rebuilding until they propose it. Just as Romney now opposes the health care system built on his model in Massachusetts. Obama must fail, even if the country goes down with him. That's what Rush told them.

    October 21, 2011 10:24 am at 10:24 am |
  15. joe

    mitt is a fake and a flip-flopper. the guy is slimy you really have no idea where he stands on anything. he will say whatever it takes to be president. i hope and pray the american people see through this and re-elect president Obama who had provided our country with soild, steady leadership.

    October 21, 2011 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  16. ST

    Oh! ya! Romney, you become president before winning primaries? right? By the way since when 23% allows anyone to win the presidency!!!!! Continue with your wishful thinking.

    October 21, 2011 10:25 am at 10:25 am |
  17. Orchid333

    Hmmm.... sounds like Mitt has the same goals in mind as our current President. The problem is that our current prez has a way to pay for these projects that Mitt's side of the coin refuses to pass. How does Mitt propose to pay for the infrastructure jobs? Gonna take that money away from our Seniors? Gonna take it away from the poor? Might as well call him the Sheriff of Nottingham.

    October 21, 2011 10:29 am at 10:29 am |
  18. Jilli

    Yeah Mitt, you've got a shot because you've taken all sides of just about all of the major issues, appealing to everyone. Problem is, you've not no spine and no true convictions – that will eliminate you as a serious contender for many. Multiple choice mitt, the most amazing thing about him is he can stand upright without a spine.

    October 21, 2011 10:33 am at 10:33 am |
  19. FIELD1stSGT

    Like Obama you do a lot of wishfull thinking with no productivity.

    October 21, 2011 10:34 am at 10:34 am |
  20. TEAliban/TEAhadists

    With your elitist attitude Willard, you have no chance of becoming POTUS. Give it up already. You've been running for POTUS for 6 years now.

    OBAMA/BIDEN 2012

    October 21, 2011 10:37 am at 10:37 am |
  21. Bessy

    WOW!!!! This guy sure is a dreamer. He has no chance. Period !!

    October 21, 2011 10:38 am at 10:38 am |
  22. Portland tony

    So many comments about his arrogance. What's he supposed to say. I entered the race to LOSE? And considering the bunch of losing twits in the Republican race, I'm damned sure he'll be their nominee.

    October 21, 2011 10:39 am at 10:39 am |
  23. The Real Tom Paine

    He has about as much chance of being POTUS as Dennis Kucinich does of being Miss America.

    October 21, 2011 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  24. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Corporations R. People II

    Willard has a better shot of getting his chickletts smacked out of his piehole courtesy of Rick Parry
    Thank you sooo much, I needed that!

    October 21, 2011 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  25. Leroy

    Willard keeps saying "we got to find a way" to do this or do that. Bottom line, he is clueless!

    October 21, 2011 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11