(JERUSALEM) — Mitt Romney on Sunday shrugged off the suggestion he would like a do-over on his controversial comments about the London Olympics, stating that he says what he “actually believes.”
He added, however, that after two days of events, the Games’ organization has been “picture perfect.”
In a wide-ranging interview with ABC News, Romney talked about his bumpy trip through London as well as assessing his prospects for debating President Obama and his moment at the Western Wall.
So far the roughest moment on the Republican presidential candidate’s road trip came after he said that some things about the Olympics were “disconcerting.” That remark angered Brits, including the mayor of London.
“You know, I was referring to press reports before I even got to London that suggested that the organizing committee was having some challenges,” Romney told ABC News.
“I was there for two days,” he added. “The games were carried out without a hitch. So, as far as I’m able to tell, despite the challenges as any organizing committee faces, they were able to organize games that have been so far so good, picture perfect.”
“I tend to tell people what I actually believe,” Romney said when asked if he would want to change his words if he could go back and answer the questions again.
The Republican presidential candidate looked ahead to his two debates with Obama this fall. He said that while he has not held any practice debates, he knows that the president was “a very effective debater in the last round.”
“There’s a lot that we’ll do at getting prepared for these debates with President Obama,” said Romney. “I think, as you suggest, they’ll be very important because the rhetoric will be met with response. And if there’s ever been something which is said which is untrue, the truth will come out.”
“I would expect [the president] to be very effective on the debate stage,” Romney said. “I don’t think that it will come down to a selection of words. I think it will come down to a selection of course. What is the path America wants to follow?”
Romney also shared a story about a moment he had with his wife, Ann, before the couple visited one of the holiest sites in the Jewish religion on Sunday, the Western Wall. Romney revealed that he and Ann sat together and shared the prayers they placed in the wall that day.
“Yes, before we went to the wall we both sat down and wrote prayers, and you know I read to her what I had written and she read to me what she wrote,” he said.
“My thoughts were in regards to peace, my family, my wife and the source of our salvation,” Romney said.
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Gregory Krieg, CNN
Ruth Brown, Idaho Press-Tribune