Mitt Romney Puppet

This puppet of Mitt Romney was paraded through the streets of Tampa during the 2012 Republican National Convention. Critics accused Romney of championing the interests of the nation’s top income earners, hence this puppet’s “1%” crown.

Tampa Bay History Center Collection

As Florida’s population boomed after World War II, so did the state’s importance on the national political scene. The Democratic Party dominated Florida politics before World War II. But after the war, Florida became a contested political state, and the Republican Party held its national convention in Miami Beach in 1968. Four years later, both the Democratic and Republican Parties held their conventions in Florida. By 2012, Florida was home to nearly 20 million people and was still a contested, politically speaking, state. With this in mind, the 2012 Republican National Convention was held in Tampa.

Three Fast Florida Facts

  1. In 1940, only 1,897,414 people lived in Florida and the state had only six representatives in the U.S. House of Representatives. In 2023, the state had 28.
  2. The 1968 Republican National Conventions was the first time the GOP held its convention in a former state of the Confederacy.
  3. Mitt Romney’s vow to block federal funding for public broadcasting, in particular PBS, the home of Sesame Street, inspired protestors to build and use puppets as props at political demonstrations.