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UPDATED: Romney announces ‘Justice Advisory Committee’
GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney has appointed a team of 63 practicing attorneys, judges and law professors to serve on a justice advisory committee for his campaign, staff announced in a release Tuesday.
The committee is expected to “draw on their experience in all three branches of government, private practice, industry, and academia to advise Governor Romney in his campaign for the presidency,” the campaign release said, adding the 63-person board will specifically “advise on the Constitution, judicial matters, law enforcement, homeland security, and regulatory issues” and provide legal counsel for Romney’s campaign when needed.
“Our nation needs a Congress and an Executive branch that are cognizant of the bounds of their powers and a judiciary that will strictly construe the Constitution and refuse to legislate from the bench,” Romney said in the release. “I am proud and honored to have the support of an extraordinary group of attorneys and legal scholars. Their deep experience and wisdom will be invaluable as we address the constitutional and legal issues facing the nation.”
The formation of the committee could play well among some voters in Iowa, specifically from social and religious Conservatives who feel the Iowa Supreme Court has overstepped its Constitutional boundaries in the last few years, particularly in the 2009 ruling of Varnum v. Brien, which legalized same-sex marriage in Iowa.
Boston-based Romney spokesman Ryan Williams said the entire committee is volunteer.
Romney, a national presidential frontrunner who has amassed great personal wealth from leading businesses in the private sector, has been scrutinized by his Democrat rivals for campaign spending, including $126,000 on private jets for campaign travel in Boston, Mass., southern California and Las Vegas, NV. Campaign expenditures exceeded $5 million within three months, according to a report from the Boston Herald.
Democrats in Iowa said the expenses contradicted statements Romney made in Des Moines that he would limit face time in Iowa during this election cycle because he desired to conduct “a more lean campaign.”
“These are lean times, and so we’ve got a more lean campaign,” he said in late May. “So I’m not going to be flying all over the country.”