Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney says he won’t be giving reporters a chance to photograph him watching his wife Ann’s dressage horse perform ballet at the Summer Olympic Games in London.
It was reported last week that Ann Romney’s horse, Rafalca, had earned a spot on the U.S. equestrian team.
“Isn’t that something,” the GOP candidate remarked to CBS host Bob Schieffer in an interview that aired on Sunday. “She along with two other people purchased a horse and have trained it up, and it’s done so well that the trainer and that horse are going on to represent the United States in the Olympics in London.”
“So, she’s quite thrilled and I’m sure she’ll be watching. I have a campaign to attend to so I won’t be able to see it perform, but I’m very pleased for her.”
He added: “It’s the sport of dressage. Not many people are familiar with it. But it’s something for which she has a passion.”
Ann Romney has credited horse riding with helping her to deal with multiple sclerosis, a pastime that most sufferers of the disease do not have access to.
As The New York Times noted in 2007, dressage horses can run in the seven figures and the saddles can cost thousands of dollars.
But even at those prices, Ann Romney won’t tell her husband how many horses she owns.
“Mitt doesn’t even know the answer to that,” she laughed. “I’m not going to tell you!”
In 2010, the Romneys took more tax deductions on their horses than most Americans earn in a year. According to the Times, the couple “declared a loss of $77,000 on their 2010 tax returns for the share in the care and feeding of Rafalca.”
Census Bureau statistics show that the mean yearly per capita income for individuals in the U.S. between 2006 and 2010 was $27,334.
Watch this video from CBS’s Face the Nation, broadcast June 17, 2012.