Craig Romney Brags About His Father's 'Determination' In Beating His Wife And New Mother In Family Triathlon


From this Saturday's coverage of the GOP candidates out on the campaign trail in Iowa on CNN, Mitt Romney introduces his youngest son Craig who shares what is supposed to be an "endearing" story about his father and a family tradition of theirs where they hold a little triathlon every year. I don't think I can sum this up much better than Ron Brownstein did when Candy Crowley, who also looked a bit shocked, asked him to react to the story:

BROWNSTEIN: Just what America needs, a president who can be a new mother in a triathlon. Who knew?

Transcript via CNN:

CROWLEY: Welcome back to "Contenders 2012." We're taking the time this afternoon to let you hear from the 2012 presidential contenders, basically unfiltered, uninterrupted and in their own words. Sometimes live, sometimes on tape, but always unedited. We want to go first and give you a sort of a little bit of an idea of what Mitt Romney has been doing today. He woke up in New Hampshire and he touched down not too long ago here and was in Le Mars, Iowa, giving a little bit of his campaign speech.


MITT ROMNEY: This is also Plymouth County, right? This is a republican county. This is a county that had the wisdom in the last general election to vote for John McCain. Don't we wish the entire state and the entire nation would have done that? But that didn't happen. I can tell you this, though, if I'm the republican nominee, I'll be back in Iowa to win the general election and we will win Iowa. We'll go to Washington with a mandate to make sure we get this country back on the right track. I'm going to be back in Iowa.

Now, when I came today to town, I wanted to make sure that my family got a chance to know something about this corner of Iowa. So I brought my son, Craig. My son, Craig, is the youngest in my family. And he has two boys of his own. But he happens to be with me -- what kind of ice cream? Oh, I remember, he had butter pecan I think. Come on up here, Craig, come to say hi, tell them something about your family or about your dad that they don't know. My son, Craig.

CRAIG ROMNEY: Thank you. You know, it's a privilege to be out here on the campaign trail with my dad, to be back in Iowa. Again, it's really a pleasure to be out here. I want to tell you a quick story about my dad that you probably haven't heard before. My dad is a very competitive guy. And he's relentless. And we have this little tradition in our family where we do a family triathlon every year. So, we do a short little swim and a bike race and a run at the end. And my wife had just had a baby, she just had our second child a couple, about a month or two previously. And she decides to go for it and compete in the race. So, all the boys have finished at this point. And it was down to my wife and my dad over here.

ROMNEY: I tripped her.

CRAIG ROMNEY: And it was kind of in the home stretch in the run there. And she had a slight lead on him. And he said that in that moment, he decided he was going to win that race or he was going to die trying. And you see this fight to the finish, and he went for this -- he gave it everything he had. He gave it a good kick and he beat her in the end. And he did almost die trying, by the way.

He passed out in a lawn chair and we didn't see him the rest of the day. He barely made lot of life. But it's that type of hard work, it's that type of determination, I think, that we need in the White House. We need someone who can go in there and solve the challenges we're facing as a country. And my dad's the guy to do it. Thanks, guys.

ROMNEY: Thanks, Craig. Well, there's more to that. I changed the nature of the triathlon after that. I didn't like this idea that these -- swimming, biking and running. We had to add some sports. Now, we have log-sawing, nail-hammering. We've added some things I excel at. So I don't come in last every year. I get a few other things I can do well, so, it's a great family experience.


CROWLEY: All the things you learn out here on the campaign trail with the Republican and Democratic candidates. I am joined now by political analyst Ron Brownstein, CNN contributor. Did you know that story?

BROWNSTEIN: Just what America needs, a president who can be a new mother in a triathlon. Who knew?

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