Update: Some of my readers have suggested that I am overdoing it on Ann Romney. I don’t think so. Look at this excerpt from a recent Politico story:

When I asked Romney if it was legitimate to ask people to vote for him because of his stable family life, his wife, Ann, who was sitting next to him, interjected: "We’ll take that! I’ll take it!"

And the NYT article, cited below, notes this too:

Mr. Giuliani’s three marriages have already bubbled up as an issue. In February, Ann Romney, the wife of Mitt Romney, the former Massachusetts governor, noted that her husband “had only one wife” — comparing him to other leading Republican candidates who had gone through divorces.

The New York Times, ABC and Ann Romney should be ashamed of themselves for using families as political issues..

The idea that NYT and ABC are asking Andrew Giuliani about whether he would support his dad is outrageous. When I was 21, I was lost and confused, as 21 year olds usually are.

I expected this of the NYC’s tabloids, but not the New York Times itself, which is supposed to be a serious paper.

On the other hand, I think that this was really invited by Mitt Romney’s campaign with Ann Romney’s statement that Mitt Romney "has only had one wife". Let us hope that this race doesn’t descend into "my family is better than yours".

Categories: Media


cwpete · March 5, 2007 at 12:21 PM

Like it or not, families are the fundamental unit of society. How can they not be politicized? News flash for you, – Anything can be politicized, that means – Religion, education, war, patriotism, and yes – families to just name a few.

Only those who don’t like traditional families, anarchists, or others with alternative lifestyle agendas would make such a claim.

eye · March 5, 2007 at 12:44 PM

My mother met both of her husbands in seminary. Both of them were tremendously flawed men. I am a tremendously flawed man.

When someone says that they are better than me or someone else because their marriage was kept together, I feel like I am dealing with an arrogant, self-righteous person, not someone who should be president.

cwpete · March 5, 2007 at 2:04 PM

Did Romney really say he was better than you since he has not been divorced, or since he has a successful “traditional family?” Did he say that he was better than anyone else? I don’t think that was said. However I can understand that the touting of a successful family is a thumb in that eye to the secular – alternative types. Having said that, people of all faiths and political parties should celebrate a successful family.

However, there are some of us that believe that if person can’t be faithful to their spouse, also *may* have difficulties being faithful to their constituency or to their oath of office. That goes to for both Republicans & Democrats. You may agree or disagree with that, however, flaws are flaws. True, we are all flawed. Shouldn’t our presidential nominees not be so flawed? Is he to be smacked with a label of self righteousness for being successful in that area? I think not.

I think the Romney’s (or any family that has stuck it out over the years through thick & thin in this day & age) ought to be commended.

Shouldn’t we be happy that they’ve been successful in their marriage vows so far? Should that not be celebrated?

Matt Browner Hamlin · March 5, 2007 at 6:02 PM

I agree that this race shouldn’t be about families, but this isn’t about Andrew Giuliani, it’s about Rudy. He’s the one who includes no references to his two children on his site. My impression is that omission is what prompted (or at least propelled) the Times article.

Andrew Giuliani is an adult and he could have declined the Times interview if he wished.

ALB · March 5, 2007 at 6:15 PM

Sure, I get disgusted when families are raised as a disproportionate part of an election campaign, which is what this is really about. It’s not whether the candidate has a spouse or had had any children: those are legitimate things to mention in a campaign. But though a family is an important part of a person’s private and public life, a family is still not a political prop. Complaints about parading a family out for campaign pictures aren’t complaints about traditional families–broken families would receive the same complaints (but they simply tend to make less-appealing photo ops). Rather, they’re complaints about candidates’ use of their families as tools.

But, I’m just a curmudgeon who’s more likely to vote against you if you inundate my mailbox with pictures of your kids* (quit wasting space; tell me about your platform, I don’t care if you’ve reproduced five blond sons!), and who isn’t that enthralled by the idea of another Rockefeller or Kennedy in office, regardless of party affiliation.

(*) I remain, however, a sucker for the Christmas card letters: I’m not *that* curmudgeonly.

eyeon08.com » Can the Romney Rehab plan get him back on the wagon? · March 6, 2007 at 6:28 AM

[…] Second, he’s going to make sure that he attacks John McCain and Rudy Giuliani. That’s news? These are the nasty, negative guys. They’ve been attacking Rudy for his family life. Mitt Romney will even personally lie about his opponents. […]

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