WASHINGTON — Mitt Romney says he has a "severely conservative" record as he looks to win over voters who favored his rivals in recent contests.

Romney tells a gathering of conservative activists in Washington that he was raised with conservative values and has governed as a conservative in Massachusetts, which he called the most liberal state in the country. Romney says he was successful in business because he applied conservative principles. 

Romney is pushing to convince conservative Republicans who are skeptical about his previous support for abortion rights and required health care coverage. 

Romney has won contests in New Hampshire and Nevada. He lost South Carolina to Newt Gingrich last month and Minnesota, Colorado and Missouri on Tuesday to rival Rick Santorum.