Ann Romney lauds husband as determined problem solver

TAMPA, Florida Tue Aug 28, 2012 7:10pm EDT

1 of 7. Ann Romney, wife of Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, talks with convention officials as she tours the stage before the second session of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida, August 28, 2012

Credit: Reuters/Mike Segar

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TAMPA, Florida (Reuters) - Ann Romney will praise her husband, Mitt, in a speech to the Republican convention on Tuesday as a determined problem solver who can turn around the United States.

In remarks prepared for delivery to the Tampa, Florida, convention just hours after Romney was formally nominated as the party's presidential candidate, Ann Romney painted a positive picture of the man she has known for nearly 50 years.

She said her husband has attacked every challenge he has faced - from reviving the struggling Salt Lake City Olympics in 2002 to helping her battle multiple sclerosis and breast cancer.

"At every turn in his life, this man I met at a high school dance has helped lift up others," said Romney, 63. "He did it with the Olympics, when many wanted to give up."

"This is the man who will wake up every day with the determination to solve the problems that others say can't be solved, to fix what others say is beyond repair," she said. "This is the man who will work harder than anyone so that we can work a little less hard."

Romney countered claims that her husband, a former private equity executive who made millions before entering politics, had never struggled in life and was out of touch with the problems of ordinary Americans.

"I read somewhere that Mitt and I have a 'storybook marriage,'" she said. "Well, in the storybooks I read, there were never long, long, rainy winter afternoons in a house with five boys screaming at once. And those storybooks never seemed to have chapters called MS or Breast Cancer."

"A storybook marriage? No, not at all. What Mitt Romney and I have is a real marriage."

Ann Romney, the mother of five boys, is one of Romney's best surrogates and has been at the forefront of his campaign's efforts to present the human side of the former Massachusetts governor.

"I can't tell you what will happen over the next four years. But I can only stand here tonight, as a wife, a mother, a grandmother, an American, and make you this solemn commitment: This man will not fail. This man will not let us down. This man will lift up America," she said.

(Editing by Alistair Bell and Jim Loney)

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