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US election: Four business leaders who ran for political office like Donald Trump

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US Election Mitt RomneyMitt Romney

A prominent figure in the US private equity community, Romney has successfully run for governor of Massachusetts and unsuccessfully (twice) for in the US election for president.

A well-known Morman, Romney started his life after university by serving as a missionary in France. Having returned to the US he joined Boston Consulting Group and then Bain & Company. This experience in the management consulting world saw him move into private equity, with Bain & Company spin-off Bain Capital.

While he initially focussed on venture capital-type deals, it was his move into leveraged buyouts that characterised his time in private equity and provided fuel for critics when he did run for political office.

His first dabble in politics came in 1994 when he took on Ted Kennedy for a position in the US Senate. While he was successful in becoming the Republication candidate for Senator, he ultimately failed to beat a ?vulnerable Kennedy by only polling 41 per cent of the vote.

A stint as the CEO of the Salt Lake Organizing Committee for the Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games of 2002 was next on the CV for Romney, taking it from in a position of struggling to raising enough money to being with a surplus of $100m.

Back on the political track in 2002, when he took advantage of scandals involving the acting Republication governor Jane Swift to run unopposed for the position.

After four years as governor of Massachusetts, he decided to step up and challenge for the highest political position in the US president. Going up against John McCain, Mike Huckabee and Ron Paul, Romney finished second in the primaries and had to put his presidential ambitions on hold.

After McCain failed to beat Barack Obama in the 2008 US election, Romney was back at it again in 2012. This time successful in the Republication primaries, he took on Obama who was after a second term in office. Like Donald Trump has done during his campaign, Romney leveraged heavily his business experience at at time when the US was still recovering from the economic crash of 2009. While running Obama close, he only secured 47.2 per cent of the popular vote and again had to step back from politics.

Keep reading to find out who else has tried to make it in politics, with varying degrees of success.

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