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August 31, 2012
Retrospective: The 2012 Republican National Convention

TAMPA, Fla. (AP) -- Mitt Romney launched his fall campaign for the White House with a rousing, remarkably personal speech to the Republican National convention and a prime-time TV audience Thursday night, August 30, 2012, proclaiming that America needs "jobs, lots of jobs" and promising to create 12 million of them in perilous economic times.

"Now is the time to restore the promise of America," Romney declared to a nation struggling with 8.3 percent unemployment and the slowest economic recovery in decades.

"I accept your nomination for president," he said, to a roar of approval. Then he pivoted into personal details of family life, recounting his youth as a Mormon, the son of parents devoted to one another, and a married man with five rambunctious sons.

The evening sealed a triumph more than five years in the making for Romney. He ran unsuccessfully for the nomination in 2008 after a single term as a moderate Republican governor of a liberal Democratic state.

(45 images)




Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan are join on the stage by their families at the end of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / Patrick Semansky
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney joined by Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan, waves to delegates after speaking at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / Charles Dharapak
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan, left, wave following Romney's speech during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / Charlie Neibergall
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Delegates react as Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney addresses delegates before speaking at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney hugs his grandchildren after his speech at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney hugs a supporter as he walks to the stage during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / J. Scott Applewhite
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney speaks to the delegation at the Republican National Convention at the 2012 Republican National Convention in the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Thursday, August 30, 2012 in Tampa, Fla. MCT / Olivier Douliery
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney acknowledges delegates before speaking at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / Patrick Semansky
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Vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan is greeted at his seat by Josh Romney, Jen Romney and Craig Romney at the Republican National Convention at the 2012 Republican National Convention in the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Thursday, August 30, 2012 in Tampa, Fla. Bradenton Herald / Tiffany Tompkins-Condi
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, right, and Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan laugh with their campaign staff as they gather for a group picture at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Delegates gather before the start of Thursday night's event at the 2012 Republican National Convention in the Tampa Bay Times Forum, Thursday, August 30, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. Bradenton Herald / Tiffany Tompkins-Condi
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Demonstrators chant during a protest march, Thursday, Aug. 30, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. Protestors gathered in Tampa to march in demonstration against the Republican National Convention. AP / Dave Martin
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Sam Tilley marches in protest during union demonstration, Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. Protestors gathered in Tampa to march in demonstration against the Republican National Convention. AP / Dave Martin
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A worker walks down the isle to collect trash on the floor at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Parker Mothershead of Charlotte, N.C. walks into the stands in the Tampa Bay Times Forum at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Sen. John McCain speaks at the The Republican National Convention in the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa Bay, Fla. on Wednesday, August 29, 2012. Tampa Bay Times / Daniel Wallace
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South Dakota Senator John Thune gestures to the delegates during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak) AP / Charles Dharapak
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Arthur Honegger, Washington bureau chief for Swiss Radio and Television, is reflected on a store window as he photographs at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan, joined by his family, from left, Charlie, mother Betty Ryan Douglas, wife Janna, Sam and Liza, waves after his acceptance speech during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / Charles Dharapak
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Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan addresses the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker cries as Republican vice presidential nominee, Rep. Paul Ryan addresses the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Wednesday, Aug. 29, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Guest Katie McKean sports elephant heels before the The Republican National Convention in Tampa Bay, Fla. on Wednesday, August 29, 2012. Tampa Bay Times / Edmund D. Fountain
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Texas delegate Phillip Payne, of Martindale, Texas, watches a video of Ron Paul on the screen during the 2012 Republican National Convention at the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa Bay, Fla., Wednesday, August 29, 2012. Tampa Bay Times / James Borchuck
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Texas delegates David Watrous from Dallas and Alice Rekeweg from Houston watch as the Oak Ridge Boys perform during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Delegates gather in the Tampa Bay Times Forum during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Delegates gather in the Tampa Bay Times Forum during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Texas delegates cheer as Mitt Romney is nominated for the Office of the President of the United States at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Demonstrators relax after a protest march, Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012, in the Ybor City section of Tampa, Fla. Protestors gathered in Tampa to march in demonstration against the Republican National Convention. AP / Patrick Semansky
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Kyle Welch from Cambridge, Mass., cheer as his 1-year-old daughter Lillian sleeps during the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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New Jersey Governor Chris Christie walks onto the stage at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / J. David Ake
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney and his wife Ann applaud with Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, second right, and Republican vice presidential nominee Rep. Paul Ryan's wife Janna, right, following New Jersey Governor Chris Christie's speech to the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Ann Romney, wife of U.S. Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, addresses the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Charles Dharapak
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Ann Romney, wife of Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney arrives on stage to deliver a speech at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012 in Tampa, Fla. AP / Evan Vucci
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Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney hugs his wife, Ann, after she delivered a speech at the Republican National Convention on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012 in Tampa, Fla. AP / Evan Vucci
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Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney comes out on stage to greet his wife Ann Romney at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla. on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Charles Dharapak
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Texas delegate Clint Moore and the rest of Texas delegates fashion their cowboy hats at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Republican vice presidential candidate, Rep. Paul Ryan, center, R-Wis., works on the speech he will deliver at the Republican National Convention, with senior adviser Dan Senor, left, and senior aid Conor Sweeney. during the campaign charter flight from Wisconsin to Tampa, Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012. AP / Mary Altaffer
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A demonstrator prepares to leave his tent, Tuesday, Aug. 28, 2012, in Tampa, Fla. Protestors gathered in a camp called "Romneyville," in Tampa to march in demonstration against the Republican National Convention. AP / Dave Martin
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Police officers stand in a downpour as they watch demonstrators marching through the streets of Tampa, Fla., to protest the Republican National Convention on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / Chris O'Meara
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Chairman of the Republican National Committee Reince Priebus speaks to delegates during an abbreviated session the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Chairman of the Republican National Committee Reince Priebus gavels closed the abbreviated first session the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / J. Scott Applewhite
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Dona Poelman from Racine, Wis. fashions accessories on her shirt at the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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Brad McCally from San Antonio, Texas sits in the chair on the floor of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / Jae C. Hong
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Rigger Omar Acebedo climbs down on on a ladder to floor of the Republican National Convention in the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., on Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / David Goldman
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A Coast Guard patrol boat cruises past the Tampa Bay Times Forum in Tampa, Fla., Monday, Aug. 27, 2012. AP / Dave Martin

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