MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, September 24th 2023 - 14:14 UTC



US candidate Romney apologized to PM Cameron for London Games comments

Friday, July 27th 2012 - 02:32 UTC
Full article 11 comments
Romney leaving 10 Downing Street, helped organize the 2002 winter Olympics in Salt Lake City  Romney leaving 10 Downing Street, helped organize the 2002 winter Olympics in Salt Lake City

US Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney's high-profile overseas trip got off to a rocky start on Thursday when he was forced to clarify a comment seen as criticizing London's handling of the Summer Olympics that he came to celebrate.

The Republican candidate ruffled British feathers ahead of his visit by appearing to suggest in a US television interview that London was not ready for the Games, whose opening ceremony in the British capital is held on Friday.

“It's hard to know just how well it will turn out. There are a few things that were disconcerting,” Romney told NBC when asked to analyze London's handling of the Olympics.

He cited what he said was the threat of a strike by immigration and customs officials. “That obviously is not something which is encouraging.”

The comments were seized on by British media and Prime Minister David Cameron defended Britain's handling of the Games, after he was forced to deploy extra troops to bolster security to cover a shortfall left by a private contractor.

“We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities anywhere in the world. Of course, it is easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere,” Cameron said during a news conference at the Olympic Park in London on Thursday.

The comments, in response to a question about public transport problems ahead of the games, could be uncomfortable reading for Romney, who has made much of his record as the man who saved the failing Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City in 2002.

“We talked about the great progress that has been made in organizing the Games,” Romney said after meeting Cameron.

“My experience as the Olympic organizer is that there are always a few very small things that end up not going quite right, those get ironed out, and then when the Games themselves begin, the athletes take over,” he said.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • Marcos Alejandro

    Seems like Mr Romney went to UK to kiss some butt and got kick in the butt instead.
    This Yank should know by now that the Brutish don't like to hear the truth.

    Jul 27th, 2012 - 04:10 am 0
  • Idlehands

    “the Brutish don't like to hear the truth”

    Coming from an Argentine you've gotta laugh.

    Jul 27th, 2012 - 06:46 am 0
  • Rufus

    Effectively saying “you're not doing it right” before the event has even started, when all of the things that he raised as concerns have already been dealt with, and expecting not to get at least slightly pulled up on it isn't really a great surprise is it?

    Politicians saying moderately stupid things isn't really much in the way of news, better to save the headlines for when they say things that are profoundly stupid.
    Given all politicians, there wouldn't be a very long wait for the next stupid thing said...

    Jul 27th, 2012 - 10:24 am 0
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!