UPDATE: Romney Supporters Eagerly Back Their 'Hometown Hero' After Close Win in Michigan

'I was confident we could come together today and take a giant step toward a brighter future,' Bloomfield-area native tells backers after a tense primary day.

NOVI – Mitt Romney was looking for a little home cooking, and he got it.

The son of former Michigan Gov. George Romney who was born and raised in Bloomfield Hills needed a win to stop surging opponent Rick Santorum and ease fears that he couldn’t take a state in which the economy is the issue. He ended up taking what many political pundits called a "must win" with 43 percent of the vote statewide and overwhelming support in Oakland and Wayne counties.

“It’s a big, big win and I just wanted to come down here and join the rally and the celebration,” Troy resident Bill McNeil said after leaving the ballroom where Romney gave his victory speech at the in Novi.

“I was a little worried earlier today when I saw the precinct I voted in empty, and there were rumors of Democrats trying to mess it up,” McNeil explained. “But I was really hoping he’d be in this race because we need a new direction.”

Romney's victory came, in part, with big margins of victory in Oakland, Macomb and Wayne counties. He finished with 50 percent of the vote in Oakland and again took the county by more than 20 percentage points. Unofficial results show that he swept both Bloomfield Hills precincts in overwhelming fashion and finished with 79 percent of the city's overall vote. In Bloomfield Township, Romney took all 32 precincts for roughly 71 percent of the total vote.

He won Macomb and Wayne counties each by roughly 9 percentage points.

Being from Michigan did make a difference for some new and previous Romney supporters at the polls Tuesday, but it didn’t outweigh the serious problems the country is facing compared with four years ago, said Cori Easley of Royal Oak.

“I supported him four years ago and I do now because the country is desperate for change,” she said.

Romney promised a lot of change during his primary night speech, which started shortly after Santorum spoke from Grand Rapids at about 10 p.m. A smattering of boos from the pro-Romney crowd filled the ballroom as Santorum appeared on television with rock music blaring in the background. But the jeers turned to cheers and chants of "Mitt! Mitt! Mitt!" when the former senator conceded the state.

“It was just a few weeks ago the pundits and pollsters were ready to count us out. I was confident we could come together today and take a giant step toward a brighter future,” Romney said.

“Thank you Michigan. This is the place I was born, the place where I was raised and Michiganders in this room, we consider you family.”

Romney didn’t mention Santorum or his other Republican by name and spent the rest of his speech targeting President Obama with his plans to cut taxes and reduce the federal deficit.

“My biggest priority will be about saving your job, not how to keep my own,” he pledged if voted into the White House. “Let’s finally get a tax plan that puts America back to work. I’ve got it and will put it in place.”

State Rep. Mark Ouimet, R-Scio Township, said he hoped that message resonated with Michigan residents and citizens around the country who were watching Tuesday’s results with great interest.

“The biggest thing to take away is having less government that’s more efficient and focused on the people instead of the elected officials,” he said. “I think it was a great night for the party, for Mitt Romney and a great night for our state. Tonight showed we’re on the comeback and turning things around with our governor and who we want to be our president.”

Bloomfield Township Trustee Corinne Khederian said she expected it to be a close race all night, but was confident Romney would win.

She said she attended , and sees a much different Romney than the candidate she supported in 2008.

“He was more relaxed than I’ve ever seen him and he’s confident in a way that’s really relating to people and that’s great to see,” Khederian said. “He’s getting better as a candidate.”

Herb Helzer May 25, 2012 at 05:19 PM
Ron: 1) 19% is only counting the specific Department of Defense budget; other commenters are adding the Department of Veterans Affairs, the Department of Homeland Security AND the "off-the-books" special authorizations to fund operations in Iraq and Afghanistan -- the semiannual "vote for this or we'll say you hate the troops" ultimatums that the Bush Adminstration loved to fling at Congressional Democrats. 2) We have far fewer than 800 permanent bases around the world. 3) The F-22 Raptor is a plane in search of a mission: Designed in the Reagan era, initially contracted during Bush 41's watch, first flown while Clinton was in office, deployed under Bush 43, and the last of 187 aircraft set to be delivered this quarter. It's never seen combat and likely never will...but the final per-unit cost (including all that R&D) is closer to $400 million than "a billion." Still costly. 4) Even the original M16s were better than the AK in terms of accuracy and weight; but we've long ago moved on to newer and better, including the M16A4. Complaining about it now after 40 years of successful deployment isn't helping your case. 5) Sweetheart government contracts are always bad, no matter who happens to be President or in Congress. 6) You're right that medical costs for Iraq/Afghan. vets will be a budget burden for decades to come. Ending the wars will put a cap on that; continuing them won't. 7) The debt ceiling debacle belongs solely to the GOP; Boehner, McConnell, Cantor & Romney OWN it.
Herb Helzer May 25, 2012 at 05:28 PM
Please, Zach; don't hold back. Stop with with code words and tell us what you REALLY think of those Detroit Democrats and the City you hate so much. Go on. Say it. It'll be liberating.
Ed Lambert May 25, 2012 at 05:39 PM
Helzer, you've got it wrong that the debacle is owned by the GOP. For one thing, there was a Democrat majority in at least one chamber of the Congress for most of the three decades prior to Obama's election. You cannot find an instance on record where the Democrat Party has ever voted for reduced government spending on anything. That runs counter to the nature of liberal socialism and its appetite for expanded government.. That silly stuff authored by Nutter yesterday or Wednesday was exposed for what it was before 1 pm on Thursday. It is only the alternative media that is exposing it, for that same media would be telling us whether any of the MSM outlets were letting the cat out of Obama's bag.
Herb Helzer May 25, 2012 at 05:46 PM
True, there's no actual "trust fund." The idea of sequestering Social Security taxes died with Al Gore's "lockbox" after 2000. But what does exist are the promises under law made to all Americans, and the fact that for 77 years Social Security has been a vital part of keeping scores of millions of seniors out of poverty -- because it's the right thing to do. Individual retirement investments and pensions are enough for many, but if you retired in 2008 when stock markets lost half their value then you'd know that many things are beyond the control of even the most fiscally prudent (those lucky enough to not have had serious medical issues or other life events that reduced their retirement savings). Maybe Zach would prefer leaving our retirees on icebergs so they don't continue to be a useless drain on resources better used by younger, more productive citizens.
Ronald Wolf May 25, 2012 at 07:02 PM
Herb, your obviously a very inrtelligent gentleman and I hope you will continue to opine despite the know it alls with agendas. I get the feeling you are a staunch democrat. I have no problem with that, the democrats have done more to help the average middle class family and seniors than Reagan and his cheese. Where I differ is since we are in the age of information, the machinations of government are more exposed, Its the system that like a private club serving its own members first and flying with the prevailing wind that is the problem. I blew the whistle on the M16 in 68 gettin the late Jules Bergman to make a comparisson. You are right the 223 round is more accurate but it is easily deflected. Closely engineered tolerances encourage jamming. In Iraq the ultra fine desert sand made short work of the M16. The round cannot penetrate cinderblock, this is why the M60 was favored. The "new" Iraq army said no thankyou to the M16. I have no knowledge of the improved A4 version but the light round is the problem. I believe a 243 closer to NATO is superior. I am sure there are other opinions. On the raptor I think the 400million may refer to the time it will be produced in larger numbers. It sure looks impressive does it not? There are many examples of military dead end spending. Pessimistically I believe the facts you see today are the myths of tomorrow. e.g. Wall Street and Bank "protections". Both parties are consumate salespersons and we are their naive subjects.


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