FACTBOX-Republican Romney mulls 2012 US presidential run

April 11, (Reuters) – Former Massachusetts governor Mitt
Romney said on Monday he would form a committee to explore a
run for the Republican nomination to take on President Barack
Obama, a Democrat, in the 2012 U.S. presidential election.

Romney, 64, would be making his second run for the White
House after falling short in the race to be the Republican
nominee in 2008 to John McCain. Romney has been an early
front-runner in some polls, given his high name recognition and
a sophisticated fund-raising machine.

Here are some facts about the man who could become Obama’s
Republican challenger next year.

* Romney’s best known achievement as governor was statewide
healthcare reform that became a model for Obama’s national
policy. That has created a tricky situation for Romney. Some
Republican opponents have demanded that he repudiate his
healthcare program, while Democrats have gone out of their way
to praise the program.

* He is a fifth-generation Mormon whose forebears were
involved in the U.S.-based religious movement from the mid-19th
century. Like most young Mormons, Romney spent time as a
missionary, spending 30 months in France from July 1966. His
Mormon faith might hinder him among evangelical Christians
voters who are most prevalent in the southern United States.

* Romney stepped in to rescue the 2002 Winter Olympics in
Salt Lake City. He was tapped as president and CEO of the
organizing Committee in 1999 after the games were tarred by
allegations of bribery by top officials and were far behind
revenue benchmarks. He brought in a new management team, cut
budgets and boosted fund-raising. By most measures the Games
were regarded as a major success and also turned a tidy
profit.

* Originally a management consultant, Romney went on to
head Bain Capital, a private equity firm that executed
leveraged buyouts and corporate turnarounds, where he amassed a
multimillion-dollar fortune. He did not take a salary as
governor of Massachusetts or when running the Olympic Games.

* Romney’s critics charge he has remade himself as a social
conservative, shifting positions on issues such as abortion,
gay rights and gun control, to position himself for the
Republican nomination after governing more from the center in
liberal Massachusetts.

* He grew up in Michigan, the son of George Romney, an
automobile executive and three-term governor of the state. He
graduated from Brigham Young university in Utah and later from
Harvard with a joint MBA/law degree.

* Romney and wife Ann, who married in 1969, have five sons
and 16 grandchildren. They have homes in Belmont,
Massachusetts; Lake Winnipesaukee, New Hampshire; and La Jolla,
California.

FACTBOX-Republican Romney mulls 2012 US presidential run