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Mitt Romney and Rob Portman eat Chipotle burrito bowls


The best possible photo of Mitt Romney at Chipotle. (Melina Mara/Washington Post)

DENVER – On Monday night, Mitt Romney was waxing poetic about being at the foot of the Rockies and campaigning where the “men and women have matched the mountains.” And on Tuesday, the Republican presidential nominee stepped up his Colorado courtship by paying homage to the state’s fast-casual success story: Chipotle.

Romney stopped by a Chipotle in Denver, one of the chain’s 71 Colorado franchises, for lunch before hunkering down for more debate rehearsals. Chipotle opened its first restaurant in 1993 near the campus of the University of Denver, site of Wednesday night’s debate, and since then has quickly taken off nationally.

Sauntering into Chipotle with his debate practice partner, Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Romney wondered aloud whether he should get a burrito or the waist-watching burrito bowl, sans tortilla.

“I usually get the burrito,” Romney said. “I think I’ll go for the bowl today. That’s a good idea.” 

Romney ordered his with pork, rice, black beans and pico de gallo, as well as guacamole (which costs extra). Portman ordered a burrito bowl with pork, brown rice, salsa, hot sauce and guacamole. 

When a reporter asked Romney whether he was ready to debate President Obama, the candidate said, “I’m getting there.”

Then Romney motorcaded back to his Denver hotel for more rehearsals and coaching from his advisers.

Philip Rucker is a national political correspondent for The Washington Post, where he has reported since 2005.



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