The size of the gigantic family compound set to rise like a phoenix from the ashes of Mitt Romney’s $12 million teardown in California has been exaggerated in the press, according to Romney.
Sort of, at least. Romney told the publisher of the New Hampshire Union Leader, Joe McQuaid, that while the square footage of the new estate will — as reported — nearly quadruple in size once construction is complete, the number is misleading because it includes the garage and basement. According to McQuaid, Romney merely shrugged when pressed why he didn’t try and correct the record more aggressively.
Depending on what he does with the place, Romney’s “living space” versus “nonliving space” distinction may be somewhat blurry. If MTV Cribs has taught us anything, it’s that basements in homes with eight-digit property values are more than just a dank storage pit.
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Benjy Sarlin is a reporter for Talking Points Memo and co-writes the campaign blog, TPM2012. He previously reported for The Daily Beast/Newsweek as their Washington Correspondent and covered local politics for the New York Sun.