(CBS News) On a mission to shatter the image of her husband as rigid and unrelatable, Ann Romney told CBS News she worries that President Obama’s entire campaign strategy is “kill Romney.”
“I feel like all he’s doing is saying, ‘Let’s kill this guy,” she said, seated next to her husband, presumptive GOP presidential nominee Mitt Romney, in an exclusive interview with CBS News chief political correspondent Jan Crawford. “And I feel like that’s not really a very good campaign policy.
“I feel like Mitt’s got the answers to turn this country around,” she continued. “He’s the one that’s got to bring back hope for this country, which is what they ran on last time. But the truth is, this is the one that has the hope for the - for America.”
In August, some Democratic strategists let leak to the press that Obama’s top aides were looking at a massive character takedown of Romney in light of a deterring economy; “kill Romney” was a phrase used by one. “That was their memo that came out from their campaign,” Ann Romney said. “And it’s like, ‘not when I’m next to him you better not.”
Mitt Romney’s image problem is perhaps the single most consistent aspect of his candidacy. The latest installment of his portrait as being unable to relate to the plight of the common man came Wednesday, with a report suggesting his already $250 million net worth, as estimated by his campaign, could be greater still with assets hidden offshore.
Ann Romney said it’s all part of a plan to portray her husband “in a light that is just completely wrong... they don’t’ get him at all.” Pressed by Crawford on what qualities in her husband she sees most misrepresented, she said, that “he’s not as approachable as I am or something like that. That’s like, really kind of funny to me because it’s all - it’s all backwards.”
“That’ll change,” Mitt Romney assured her. “That’ll come with time.”
One opening the pair has to usher in an “everyday” persona is their search for a running mate. Though Mitt Romney wouldn’t say where he is in the picking process, both he and Ann said they have a shortlist of favorites.
She said she’s been “giving [the veepstakes] a lot of thought actually,” and is convinced that “it’s gonna take someone else that’s gonna be there with Mitt, that Mitt will enjoy, with the same personality type that will enjoy spending time with them, and also competent, capable, and willing to serve this country.”
On their way to meet up with Sen. Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H., who frequents the running mate shortlist chatter, at a July Fourth parade in Wolfeboro, N.H., Ann Romney said she and her husband “been looking at” the possibility of choosing a woman to run alongside him. “And I’d love that option as well,” she said.