EAST HAMPTON, New York — Mitt Romney has moved on from his own New Hampshire vacation to the favored vacation spot of New York’s financial elite.
His week-long break from the campaign trail over, the presumptive Republican nominee returned to his central summer task, fundraising, spending Sunday in the Hamptons with House Majority Leader Eric Cantor.
An event later in the day will be held at the home of billionaire David Koch — the younger of the oil refining magnate bothers who have become central to Republican politics — and is expected to draw Democratic protestors.
At The Creeks, dozens of vehicles, including a candy red 2013 Ferari 458 Spider and a 2012 silver Aston Martin DBS, waited on a line to enter the massive compound. Romney staffers and private security guards repeatedly checked names at the gate, backing up traffic along the shoulder of Montauk Highway, as Secret Service and local police officers looked on.
A silver Porsche Carrera followed the preceding car into the gate without checking with staff, prompting one of the private guards to smack the hood with his hand to force the driver to stop.
The owner of the red Ferrari, who would not give his name but said he is a private investor, described the estate as “stunning,” adding that he’s been a longtime Romney donor.
“We think Gov. Romney is the right person at a difficult moment and he has the experience necessary to turn around the economy, create jobs, and put us back on track,” he said, as though reading off campaign talking points.
The owner of the Aston Martin, a self-described merchant banker who also declined to give his name, said he was there because “we’ve got to get rid of Obama.”
Adam Rosenbluth, a doctor, said he was backing Romney because of the effects of ObamaCare.
“On the medical side people are genuinely concerned,” he said, noting he agrees with Romney that what worked for Massachusetts doesn’t mean it will work for the nation. He added that he was also concerned by what happened in Boston under RomneyCare, but understood that Romney had to make compromises to pass his reform law.
Rosenbluth described Romney’s public image as “plastic,” comparing him to a Ken doll.
“I’m thrilled because I’m seeing him doing better than I thought he would do,” he said, adding that he hopes to see a more personal side to Romney at the fundraiser that he can take back to his friends and colleagues.