According to The Telegraph, Romney said that because of concerns about security, it was “hard to know just how well it (the Olympics) will turn out”.
Romney added that he saw “a few things that were disconcerting” about London’s preparations.
“The stories about the private security firm not having enough people, supposed strike of immigration and customs officials, that obviously is not something which is encouraging,” Romney said.
His remark prompted a sharp answer from British Prime Minister David Cameron. “We are holding an Olympic Games in one of the busiest, most active, bustling cities anywhere in the world,” Cameron said, adding: “Of course it’s easier if you hold an Olympic Games in the middle of nowhere.”
Boris Johnson, the Mayor of London, later heaped more misery on Romney's campaign by dismissing his remarks while onstage at a concert in Hyde Park to mark the end of the Olympic torch relay.
"There's guy called Mitt Romney who wants to know if we are ready,” Johnson cried, prompting jeers from some of the 60,000-strong crowd. “Are we ready? Yes we are!” Commentators began referring to the Republican candidate’s day in London as a “Romneyshambles”.
London: Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s visit to Downing Street has been overshadowed by a diplomatic spat after he cast doubts over London’s readiness to host the Olympics.
First Published: Friday, July 27, 2012, 12:39