During his 1994 Senate race, Romney said: "I don't line up with the NRA."
In his first presidential bid, he falsely claimed that he had been endorsed by the NRA and was later forced to backtrack.
Romney was roundly mocked in that race for claiming to be a lifelong hunter of "small varmints" like rabbits and rodents.
NRA members who watched the speech seemed not to care about Romney's record on guns, nor did they complain that he might not have been their first choice in the Republican race.
Romney checked the most important box: He is not Barack Obama.
"There is no other choice but Romney," said Jim Greger, 74, an Illinois retiree. "I would vote for Donald Duck before I'd vote for Obama."
Lillian Lamonato, 75, a Romney supporter from South Carolina, said winning in November is more important than ideological purity.
"He is conservative enough," she said of Romney. "He had to do what he had to do up there in Massachusetts. Nobody is perfect."
NRA President Wayne LaPierre revved up the crowd before the Romney speech and implored his group's 4 million members to get to work unseating Obama.
"We know if President Obama gets a second term, America as we know it will be on it's way to being lost forever," LaPierre said to lusty applause.
Just seems odd to me, this Romney posturing at the NRA conference. The big thing is, what do the things he discussed have to do with gun rights? Not to mention, name me something concrete that Obama has done to try to take your guns away.
Hell, Obama has been the best thing that ever happened to the US gun industry. How many millions of guns have been peddled in the name of Barack's coming tomorrow to grab your guns? How many thousands of tons of Ammo?