Ann Romney: Unfiltered Mitt shows competence, intelligence

FILE - This Aug. 28, 2012 photo shows Ann Romney, wife of U.S. Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, waving after addressing the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. Romney wore a knee-length bright red belted dress designed by Oscar de la Renta. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON – Mitt Romney’s surge in popularity is due largely to the public seeing him for what he really is, his wife said Monday afternoon.

Citing “a barrage” of negative ads and unfair treatment from the media, Ann Romney told WTOP on Monday she attributes her husband’s uptick in the polls to Romney’s first “unfiltered” performance at the first presidential debate.

“Finally, finally the American people got to see a completely unfiltered view of my husband,” she told WTOP’s Mark Lewis and Debbie Feinstein. “You saw he was competent, that he was intelligent, that he had a vision for our future, that he understands and was caring of those suffering from the economy.”

President Obama had been leading by an average of more than 7 or 8 points in the weeks before the Oct. 2 debate. A new Gallup Tracking poll from Oct. 7 has the two contenders tied at 47 percent.

“For me, it was a thrill for the American people to tune in and not have any interpretation, listen with their ears and see with their eyes who this guy really is,” says Ann Romney, who spoke to WTOP from a campaign volunteer center in Chester, Va.

Both campaigns have eyed the Old Dominion as a key swing state, and Romney reports the mood has shifted in the last week.

“The response is just electric, especially after the debate,” she says. “People are just passionate about this. They’ve noticed a big shift.”

If the Romneys take the White House this November, the potential first lady says she would focus on breast cancer and multiple sclerosis awareness. She has suffered from both of these conditions herself.

Working with at-risk children would also be a high priority, she says. Romney would stress “how important it is that children know they are precious and loved, especially that God loves them.”

WTOP’s Paul D. Shinkman contributed to this report. Follow Paul and WTOP on Twitter.

(Copyright 2012 by WTOP. All Rights Reserved.)

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