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Romney: GOP Can’t Win By Speaking Only to Elderly White Voters


In an interview with CBS’s “Face the Nation” moderator John Dickerson at the Aspen Ideas Festival, 2012 GOP presidential nominee and former Gov. Mitt Romney (R-MA) said Republicans will stop winning until they try and appeal to “millennials, minorities and women” by speaking to more than ” largely white audiences” who are “65 and older.”

Romney said.”We are not appealing to the growing population of America, the growing demographic populations like we have to, millennials, minorities, these are two huge groups, women….we have succeeded electorally in some parts because the fastest part of the demographic growth profile today is people 65 and older. And we can do pretty good with them. But they are not going to be around forever. And where we are not doing so well is with millennials, young people and with the large and growing minority populations. And until we can connect with those populations, we’re going to have some difficulty electorally. And part of my problem was to win the nomination, which is a year long process or longer — you speak to people who vote in Republican primaries. And they tend not to be millennials or college student or minorities, so I’m speaking to largely white audiences day in and day out. My Democratic friends however are speaking to college campuses and speaking to minority groups. So when I win the nomination and show up at a black church, they say, ‘Where have you been Mr. Romney? Your opponents have been here for months. So I think someone who wants to win as a Republican — barring and unusual setting like we have now perhaps — someone who want to win as a Republican has to start competing early on in minority settings and on college campuses and with millennials and with women on issues women care about.”

On presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump, Romney added, “And on the right, our nominee is saying, ‘Hey look it’s these people here. It’s these Mexicans coming across the border’—by the way more Mexicans have gone home the last five years according to the census bureau then have come into the country — ‘it’s them, and it’s Muslims.’ And unfortunately, I’m afraid that the things Mr. Trump has said have been unfortunately branding of our party in a negative way. And one that is consistent with the image many people have with my party and it’s taken us in a direction that will be very unfortunate long term.”

Follow Pam Key on Twitter @pamkeyNEN

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