HOME  EMAIL US0

Governor

George Romney

Governor George Romney Oral History Videos 1-5 with George Scott Romney, Son

Governor George Romney Oral History Videos 6-11 with Walt De Vries, Executive Assistant for Program Development

George Romney (July 8, 1907 – July 26, 1995) was an American businessman and Republican Party politician. He was chairman and president of American Motors Corporation from 1954 to 1962, the 43rd Governor of Michigan from 1963 to 1969, and the United States Secretary of Housing and Urban Development from 1969 to 1973.

Having entered politics by participating in a state constitutional convention to rewrite the Michigan Constitution during 1961–1962, Romney was elected Governor of Michigan in 1962. Re-elected by increasingly large margins in 1964 and 1966, he worked to overhaul the state's financial and revenue structure, greatly expanding the size of state government and introducing Michigan's first state income tax. Romney was a strong supporter of the American Civil Rights Movement. He briefly represented moderate Republicans against conservative Republican Barry Goldwater during the 1964 U.S. presidential election. He requested the intervention of federal troops during the 1967 Detroit riot.

Initially a front runner for the Republican nomination for President of the United States in the 1968 election but fell behind Richard Nixon in polls. After a mid-1967 remark that his earlier support for the Vietnam War had been due to a "brainwashing" by U.S. military and diplomatic officials in Vietnam, his campaign faltered even more and he withdrew from the contest in early 1968. After Nixon's election as president, he appointed Romney as Secretary of Housing and Urban Development.

Romney's ambitious plans for housing production increases for the poor, and for open housing to desegregate suburbs, were modestly successful but often thwarted by Nixon. Romney left the administration at the start of Nixon's second term in 1973. Returning to private life, he advocated volunteerism and public service, and headed the National Center for Voluntary Action and its successor organizations from 1973 through 1991. He also served as a regional representative of the Twelve within his church.

WIKIPEDIA

Michigan Political History Society | P.O. Box 4684 East Lansing, MI 48826
The Michigan Political History Society is a non-partisan, 501(c)3 corporation.