No Apology: The Case for American Greatness

No Apology: The Case for American Greatness
No Apology:
The Case for American Greatness  
MittRomney NoApology Cover lowres.jpg
Author(s) Mitt Romney
Country United States
Language English
Subject(s) U.S. politics
Genre(s) Political commentary
Publisher St. Martin’s Press
Publication date March 2, 2010
Media type Hardcover
Pages 336
Preceded by Turnaround: Crisis, Leadership, and the Olympic Games
Followed by N/A

No Apology: The Case for American Greatness is a book by former Massachusetts Governor and U.S. presidential candidate Mitt Romney, detailing his vision for America. It was published on March 2, 2010 by St. Martin’s Press.[1] The title makes reference to Romney's contention that President Barack Obama had apologized for past American actions during trips abroad, and the subtitle to Romney's belief in American exceptionalism. The book avoids anecdotes about Romney's personal or political life and focuses instead on a presentation of his views on economic and geopolitical matters. The book debuted atop the New York Times Best Seller list for the week of March 12, 2010.[2] In the paperback version, released in 2011, Romney revised several chapters with more negative portrayals of several Presidential initiatives, including the 2009 stimulus package and the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.[3][4]


Themes and viewpoints

Romney wrote the book over a six-month period from his office in Lexington, Massachusetts and his beachside home near San Diego, California, studying findings from think tanks and reading treatises on global economics.[5][6] Romney originally found a ghostwriter to produce the book, but after being unsatisfied with the early results, decided to write it himself.[7] He did have the help of a research assistant.[6]

The title makes reference to Romney's contention that President Barack Obama has repeatedly apologized for past American actions during trips abroad, and the subtitle to Romney's belief in American exceptionalism.[8] The book avoids anecdotes about Romney's personal or political life and focuses much of its attention on a substantive presentation of his views on economic and geopolitical matters, including his inveighing against the resurgence of populism.[5][8] Government is seen as having some valuable roles, such as fostering innovation and expanding health insurance coverage to everyone.[5] The book largely avoids discussion of social issues.[5][8]

Romney states generally that Americans "need to stimulate the economy, not the government." However, he defends the Bush administration's efforts through the Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP) that he believes "prevented a systemic collapse of the national financial system". In terms of financial regulation and tax reform, he states that "personal taxes on dividends, interest, and capital gains for all middle-income families should be completely eliminated."[9]

Romney writes about the need to expand American military programs and their funding. He recommends adding a minimum of 100,000 soldiers to the Marines and the Army specifically. He writes as well about updating America's nuclear stockpile, building a missile defense system, and researching into cyber-warfare.[9]

Promotional efforts

Romney launched a 19-state book tour to promote the volume, and also appeared on television programs such as the Today Show and The View.[10] He spoke before thousands in the hall at the Salt Palace Convention Center in one of his home states, in an event that had the feel of a presidential campaign rally,[11] much as the book itself may be a blueprint for a potential Romney run in the United States presidential election, 2012.[5][8] Ben Smith of has reported that contractually enforced bulk purchases of the book were a part of the book tour plan: "his publisher, according to the document from the book tour— provided on the condition it not be described in detail— asked institutions to pay at least $25,000, and up to the full $50,000 price, in bulk purchases of the book." [12]

Commercial and critical reception

Romney said he did not expect the book would be a best seller, saying he had not written the kind of personal account that people like to read and saying he would fall far short of Sarah Palin's sales for her Going Rogue memoir.[5] Nevertheless, St. Martin's Press did commit to an initial printing of 200,000 copies.[5]

No Apology debuted at the top of the New York Times Best Seller list for the week of March 12, 2010.[2] The Times did state that stores were reporting bulk orders for the book.[2] The following week, the book slipped to the number four position.

Romney earned at least $100,000 from publishing the book; the monies were donated amongst several charities, including the Joey Fund and the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, Sabin Children’s Foundation, the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, the Dana Farber Cancer Institute Jimmy Fund, Homes For Our Troops, and the Boston Boys & Girls Club.[13]

Conservative print/online magazine Human Events ran a positive review by Jedediah Bila. Bila wrote that the "overall tone of the text is analytical. Like any practical businessman, Romney loves his data." She highlighted what she viewed as Romney's prescient ideas on energy development, healthcare reform, education reform, and expanding U.S. 'soft power' as well as 'hard power'. She concluded, "All in all, Romney’s book provides a well-organized display of his stand on key issues."[9]

Paperback edition

The softcover edition of the book came out in February 2011, at a time when Romney was likely nearing a presidential campaign announcement.[14] Now with a different subtitle, No Apology: Believe in America featured a new introduction that explicitly focused on themes of the Tea Party movement such as freedom and devotion to the U.S. Constitution.[3] While much of the book's text remained unchanged from the hardcover edition, material on the 2009 stimulus package was rewritten to be more negative about the act's effects and material about what Romney saw as the differences between "Romneycare" and "Obamacare" was recast to add defenses of the former and be more aggressively opposed to the latter.[3] According to, Romney engaged in "some strategic editing" by removing "a defense of state-level choice — not a pitch for a mandatory national approach."[15]

Romney staged a two-day media tour to promote the new edition, appearing on shows such as The View, Good Morning America, Piers Morgan Tonight, and The Late Show with David Letterman.[14]


  1. ^ "No Apology: The Case for American Greatness (9780312609801): Mitt Romney: Books". Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  2. ^ a b c Zimmermann, Eric (2010-03-13). "Romney tops bestseller list, but with an asterisk - The Hill's Blog Briefing Room". The Hill. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  3. ^ a b c Bernstein, David S. (February 10, 2011). "Mitt Rewrites Himself". The Boston Phoenix. 
  4. ^ Lizza, Ryan (June 6, 2011). "Romney’s Dilemma". The New Yorker. Retrieved August 1, 2011. 
  5. ^ a b c d e f g Issenberg, Sasha (2010-03-02). "Mitt Romney’s ‘No Apology’ is not light reading". The Boston Globe. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  6. ^ a b Issenberg, Sasha (August 30, 2009). "The Long-Distance Runner". The Boston Globe Sunday Magazine. 
  7. ^ Scherer, Michael (January 24, 2011). "Mitt Romney Readies a Different Kind of Campaign". Time.,8599,2043199-2,00.html. 
  8. ^ a b c d Altman, Alex (2010-03-03). "The Skimmer: Mitt Romney's "No Apology"". Time.,8599,1969266,00.html. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  9. ^ a b c Bila, Jedediah (March 2, 2010). "Book Review: Mitt Romney’s No Apology: The Case for American Greatness". Human Events. 
  10. ^ "Mitt Romney's book tour: first stop on the campaign trail?". The Christian Science Monitor. 2010-03-03. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  11. ^ Derek P. Jensen (2010-03-14). "Thousands of fans hail Romney in SLC". Salt Lake Tribune. Retrieved 2010-06-13. 
  12. ^ Ben Smith (2010-10-15). "How Romney made a best-seller". The Politico. Retrieved 2010-10-15. 
  13. ^ Viser, Matt (August 12, 2011). "Romney’s net worth pegged at $190-$250M". The Boston Globe. 
  14. ^ a b Askar, Jamshid Ghazi (February 2, 2011). "Romney relishes his LDS faith in media blitz". Mormon Times. 
  15. ^ (September 22, 2011). "Rick Perry says Mitt Romney shifted stance when he deleted health care line from his book". St. Petersburg Times. 

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