Report: Romney held off conceding until after Karl Rove's meltdown

On Election Night, Mitt Romney reportedly delayed conceding the race to Obama while Rove objected on-air

Jillian Rayfield
December 24, 2012 10:51PM (UTC)

The Boston Globe reports that Mitt Romney held off on conceding the presidential race on Election Night during Karl Rove's infamous meltdown on Fox News over the returns in Ohio, and only made the call once Rove had been proven incorrect.

From The Globe:


Arriving at his suite in the Westin Boston Waterfront ­hotel, Romney received regular updates from his staff. He made small talk about the Patriots and the Celtics and played with his grandchildren. He was about to concede around 11:15 p.m when Republican strategist Karl Rove made his now-infamous appearance on Fox News Channel, insisting that his own network was wrong in calling Ohio for the president.

The concession call was canceled, followed by an hour of uncertainty. Then, after Fox ­executives dismissed Rove’s concerns and stood by the network’s projection, Romney said: Call the president.

In the same story, Mitt Romney's son Tagg told the Globe that Mitt "wanted to be president less than anyone I’ve met in my life. He had no desire to . . . run,” and only ran because Tagg and Ann Romney encouraged him. “If he could have found someone else to take his place . . . he would have been ecstatic to step aside. He is a very private person who loves his family deeply and wants to be with them, but he has deep faith in God and he loves his country, but he doesn’t love the attention," Tagg said.

Tagg Romney's remarks were a part of a long Boston Globe look at Mitt Romney's failed candidacy, and how he was ultimately out-strategized and out-managed by the Obama campaign.

Read the Globe's full account here.

Jillian Rayfield

Jillian Rayfield is an Assistant News Editor for Salon, focusing on politics. Follow her on Twitter at @jillrayfield or email her at

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2012 Elections Barack Obama Mitt Romney Republicans Tagg Romney

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