File this one under the ever-growing "Romney wealth gaffes" category.
The GOP frontrunner recalled a "humorous" anecdote to Wisconsin voters in a conference call about how his father, George Romney, closed an auto factory in Michigan during his businessman years only to go to great lengths to hide this fact from voters when he ran for governor in the same state. Not only that, he suggested this gave him a closer relationship to Wisconsin, the state where George Romney shipped his factory, in his own current campaign. From the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel:
At the outset of the call, Romney said he has some connections to Wisconsin.
“One of most humorous I think relates to my father. You may remember my father, George Romney, was president of an automobile company called American Motors … They had a factory in Michigan, and they had a factory in Kenosha, Wisconsin, and another one in Milwaukee, Wisconsin,” said Romney. “And as the president of the company he decided to close the factory in Michigan and move all the production to Wisconsin. Now later he decided to run for governor of Michigan and so you can imagine that having closed the factory and moved all the production to Wisconsin was a very sensitive issue to him, for his campaign.”
Romney said he recalled a parade in which the school band marching with his father’s campaign only knew the Wisconsin fight song, not the Michigan song.
“So every time they would start playing ‘On Wisconsin, on Wisconsin,’ my dad’s political people would jump up and down and try to get them to stop, because they didn’t want people in Michigan to be reminded that my dad had moved production to Wisconsin,” said Romney, laughing.
The story bears an uncanny resemblance to Romney's own struggles defending his time at Bain Capital from charges that the private equity firm frequently engaged in layoffs. But it's hard to imagine how many other people could relate to the circumstances his father faced in Michigan.