Filner hopes Romney will lead Olympics bid

Published 30 April 13 11:01 AM

By Sandra Dibble2:10 P.M.APRIL 27, 2013 

 — San Diego Mayor Bob Filner is not only willing to cross the international border in his effort to work with Tijuana to submit a bid for the 2024 Olympics. He’s also prepared to cross a political boundary to enlist the support of former Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney.

“I’d like him to be the honorary chair of this whole effort,” Filner, a longtime Democrat, said Saturday during a stop at the TransBorder Nonprofit Fair at Point Loma Nazarene University.

The comment comes a day after a U.S. Olympic Committee official told The Associated Press that a Tijuana-San Diego joint effort was on a list of 10 cities that might bid for the summer games. Filner had first floated the idea in February.

Romney served as president and CEO of the organizing committee for the 2002 Winter Olympics in Salt Lake City. He owns a home in La Jolla.

Filner said he gets dubious reactions he brings up the idea of a binational Olympics.

“Everybody says, ‘Are you serious?’” he said.

Romney’s participation would give “instant credibility” to the effort, he said.

The mayor said that Tijuana and San Diego are in the process of setting up their respective Olympic committees and are preparing a joint announcement in the next 10 days.

A joint bid “gives us a focal point, excitement, it gives us a sense of purpose,” Filner said. “You’ve got to inventory resources, you’ve got to figure out what your strengths are, how do you multiply your strengths by joining together?” he said. “Even if we lose, we win.” 


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