This column is about hypocrisy. As a libertarian, I support marriage equality for gays and abortion rights although I admit I have struggled mightily with the latter and my views have changed after the birth of my grandchildren. I have always been and remain a Second Amendment man.
Mitt Romney once agreed with me. When running for the US Senate in 1994, Romney supported abortion on demand, gay marriage and gun control. That same year he attacked President Ronald Reagan and Vice President George Bush saying "I don't want to take us back to that, to Reagan-Bush."
Now suddenly Mitt Romney wants us to believe he is not only a fiscal conservative but a social conservative who "has always been pro-life" and now opposes same sex marriage. Can you say chameleon?
Romney's boast that he spent 24 years in the private sector creating jobs is a joke. Massachusetts ran third from the bottom of all the states in job creation during his governorship and his main vocation at Bain Capital was consolidating companies and firing workers who didn't fit into his downsizing plans.
Much like his father, Michigan Governor George Romney, Willard Mitt Romney disdains conservatives privately but knows how to sound like one when the occasion requires it. His mother, Lenore Romney, ran for the US Senate a a pro-abortion supporter of the ERA. Romney reminds me of George H.W. Bush who, after being elected President, took the National Review magazine off the coffee table and threw it in the trash replacing it with the Yale Alumni magazine saying "We don't need this shit anymore."
Here then is Mitt Romney's record. Governor Romney says he's "only been in politics the four years he was governor." He'd like us to forget his 1994 race for the US Senate when he ran to the left of Teddy Kennedy (as if there is any room there without falling off the left side of the earth.)
Here then is the real record of Willard Mitt Romney:
1994: Romney backed federal funding of abortion and the codification of Roe v. Wade. "Romney supports a federal health care plan option that includes abortion services, would vote for a law codifying the 1972 Roe v. Wade decision that legalized abortion and backs federal funding for abortions as long as states can decide if they want the money, [a spokesman] said." (Ed Hayward, "Anti-Abortion Group Endorses Romney Bid," Boston Herald, 9/8/94)
1999: Romney said, "When I am asked if am I pro-choice or pro-life, I say I refuse to accept either label." (Glen Warchol, "This Is The Place, But Politics May Lead Romneys Elsewhere," The Salt Lake Tribune, 2/14/99)
2002: Running for Massachusetts Governor, Romney said he was "devoted" to the pro-choice position. "I will preserve and protect a woman's right to choose, and am devoted and dedicated to honoring my word in that regard. I will not change any provisions of Massachusetts' pro-choice laws." (2002 Romney-O'Brien Gubernatorial Debate, Suffolk University, Boston, MA, 10/29/02)
2005: Romney Considered Abortion-Rights Supporter By Pro-Life Groups - Aide Claimed His Position Had Not Changed. "[Massachusetts Citizens for Life] considers Romney to be an abortion-rights supporter, as do national antiabortion groups such as the Family Research Council. ... [Romney aide Eric] Fehrnstrom said the governor's position has not changed on either sex education or abortion." (Scott S. Greenberger, "Roe V. Wade Omitted From Proclamation," The Boston Globe, 3/25/05)
2006: Romneycare provides taxpayer-funded abortions. Abortions are covered in the Commonwealth Care program that Romney created as Governor. Under the program, abortions are available for a copay of $50. (Menu of Health Care Services: )
2006: Romneycare guarantees Planned Parenthood a seat at the table. Romney's legislation created an advisory board and guarantees, by law, that Planned Parenthood has a seat at the table. Romney's plan established a MassHealth payment policy advisory board, and one member of the Board must be from Planned Parenthood. No pro-life organization is represented. (Chapter 58 Section 3 (q) Section 16M (a), )
Romney used his line-item veto authority to strike eight sections of the bill that he found objectionable, including the expansion of dental benefits to Medicaid recipients. Yet, he did not strike Planned Parenthood's guaranteed Board representation and he did nothing to prohibit taxpayer-funded abortions as part of his plan. ("Romney's Health Care Vetoes," Associated Press, 4/12/06)
2007: Romney now claims he has always been pro-life. "I am firmly pro-life ... I was always for life." (Jim Davenport, "Romney Affirms Abortion Opposition During Stop In SC," The Associated Press, 2/8/07) policy advisory board."
2011: Romney refuses to sign the pro-life Susan B. Anthony Pledge. Romney has drawn criticism for being one of only three Republican presidential candidates to have refused to sign the Susan B. Anthony List's Pro-Life Leadership Presidential Pledge. (dailycaller.com/2011/06/18/romney-draws-fire-for-not-signing-pro-life-pledge/)
Mitt Romney also has a record of supporting gun control and has supported anti-second amendment initiatives:
1994: Romney supported the Brady Bill and Assault Weapons Ban, bragging his stance was "not going to make me the hero of the NRA." "[Romney] said he will take stands that put him at odds with some traditional ultra-conservative groups, and cited his support for the assault rifle ban and the Brady gun control law. 'That's not going to make me the hero of the NRA,' he said. 'I don't line up with a lot of special interest groups.'" (Andrew Miga, "Mitt Rejects Right-Wing Aid," Boston Herald, 9/23/94)
2002: Romney praised Massachusetts' tough gun laws, vowed not to "chip away at them" as Governor. "[A]s the GOP gubernatorial candidate in 2002, Romney lauded the state's strong laws during a debate against Democrat Shannon O'Brien. 'We do have tough gun laws in Massachusetts; I support them,' he said. 'I won't chip away at them; I believe they protect us and provide for our safety.'" (Scott Helman, "Romney Retreats On Gun Control," The Boston Globe, 1/14/07)
2006: Romney explains he signed up for lifetime NRA membership in August 2006 because "I'm after the NRA's endorsement. ... If I'm going to ask for their endorsement, they're going to ask for mine." "Expressing familiarity with and support for gun rights is key among Republican presidential contenders ... It helps explain why Romney joined the NRA last August, signing up not just as a supporter but a designated 'Lifetime' member ... Romney told a Derry, N.H., audience, 'I'm after the NRA's endorsement. I'm not sure they'll give it to me. I hope they will. I also joined because if I'm going to ask for their endorsement, they're going to ask for mine.'" (Glen Johnson, "Romney Calls Himself A Longtime Hunter," The Associated Press, 4/5/07)
Mitt Romney once supported marriage equality. As a libertarian I wish he still did. His overnight switch is opportunistic and transparent. Mitt Romney believes in nothing but getting elected:
1994: Romney told the Massachusetts Log Cabin Club he would be better for gay rights than Ted Kennedy. In a letter to the group, Romney wrote, "As we seek to establish full equality for America's gay and lesbian citizens, I will provide more effective leadership than my opponent." An Oct. 13, 1994 : "For some voters it might be enough for me to simply match my opponent's record in this area. But I believe we can and must do better. If we are to achieve the goals we share, we must make equality for gays and lesbians a mainstream concern. My opponent cannot do this. I can and will."
2002: Romney called 2002 amendment banning gay marriage and benefits in Massachusetts too extreme and did not support it. "Mitt Romney's wife, son, and daughter-in-law signed a petition in support of a proposed constitutional amendment that would ban both gay marriage and domestic-partner benefits in Massachusetts - an amendment that Romney himself condemned as too extreme after being told of his family's support for it." (Rick Klein, "Romney Kin Signed Petition To Ban Same-Sex Marriage," The Boston Globe, 3/22/02)
2002: A Romney aide said he felt the amendment was "unnecessary." "Romney's family members signed the petition to put it on the ballot 'without reading the fine print,' [Romney aide Eric] Fehrnstrom said, but he has no reason to believe they do not support it. 'Mitt did not know they signed it, and Mitt does not support it,' he said. 'As far as Mitt is concerned, it goes farther than current law, and therefore it's unnecessary.'" (Rick Klein, "Romney Kin Signed Petition To Ban Same-Sex Marriage," The Boston Globe, 3/22/02)
2006: Romney backed efforts to pass a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage in Massachusetts. "Just two weeks before lawmakers resume a Constitutional Convention to vote on a proposed ballot initiative to ban same-sex marriage, Gov. Mitt Romney will stand with the supporters of the measure to call on the Legislature to back it. Romney will join petition backers in a State House press event today to urge the Legislature to pass the Protection of Marriage Amendment when the Constitutional Convention reconvenes July 12, authorizing a 2008 ballot question asking voters to define marriage as between one man and one woman." (Kimberly Atkins and Kate Gibson, "Mitt Joining Supporters Of Anti-Gay Wed Initiative," Boston Herald, 6/28/06)
Mitt Romney fails the test of three key conservative issues - abortion, gun rights and same-sex marriage. Conservatives who support Mitt Romney also underestimate his weakness in the South, where the Church of Latter Day Saints is viewed with suspicion by evangelical Christians. In my view, these very real problems will haunt him - and spook conservatives - in the months ahead.
... written by RStone Needs New Profession , September 27, 2011
Roger Stone, Hypocrite
1994 vs 2011 is a long time apart dude. Things are a lot different between now and then You're grabbing for straws.
I'd like to expand, but this 2-bit site doesn't bode well for those who like to type: In short read Commitment and Consistency: Hobgoblins of little Minds
... written by Alex A. , September 27, 2011
It is right in front of us, plain as day, that he (Mitt Romney) has changed his political views over the years on some key conservative issues.. even showing, over the past 6 or 7 years, that some of his social stances have abruptly changed. My question to you, Roger: Isn't that a good thing? Whether or not you or I vote for the man, we at the very least want the GOP nominee to - at the very least - broadly agree with the conservative base. It seems to me that the fact that Mitt Romney has, seemingly, effectively changed his stance on these issues over the years to coincide with a more conservative approach should be, if anything, consoling for us. Your question may be, 'well, we can't trust a man whose changed his positions over the years.' I would again ask the question, why not? Shouldn't that confirm to us the ability of the man to grow with time and seasons and changing landscape. We are so quick to make it seem like growth and change of course is a BAD thing. I would agree that it is a bad thing if one were to change his/her course from good to bad...what it seems here is we have growth occurring from bad to good.
I'm certainly willing to entertain Mitt Romney under the above pretenses, even more so, because of what he brings to the table beyond his social conservatism alignment. That is his unique experience in turning around failing enterprises. We need someone who understands cap and trade. We need a strategist. Someone who understand how to effective manage. Someone who can balance a budget sheet. Someone who who won't flinch at China, etc., etc., etc...
I'm thinking more and more that Mitt is our man.
... written by Craig C. , September 28, 2011
As we grow, mature, and wisen up, we can change our minds. The republican party landscape is littered with people that have changed their minds in these regards. Heaven knows we can all learn new things as we age. Mitt Romney has all of the components of a successful leader... smarts, experience, thoughtful, and willing to work well with others. He is the full package, the real deal. We can swim with Mitt or sink with Rick. I think the decision is obvious.
... written by Wade Weston , September 28, 2011
Id be more worried of someone who doesnt have the ability to change their mind because they arent open to anything new. People change views. It happens all the time. I certainly dont believe all the things my parents tried to teach me, but funny thing is Ive seen them change their views too. All the candidates are flawed, and they all will be. You could write the same hateblog about Reagan the one time democrat. Jesus isnt running, so lets elect a Republican that can beat Obama.
... written by thebuzz2727 , September 28, 2011
After all that reading and I'm still for Mitt Romney
... written by Dandini , September 28, 2011
Keep it simple and the truth is more clear.
Despite the political and even religious diatribe, most of which is innuendo and false accusations from the undereducated…
It’s still going to be about the economy and who can get the job done!
Romney knows and understands world economics. In the private sector, for most of his life, he successfully and profitably managed large companies, helped turn around large companies that were sinking and helped other companies get started, saving and creating thousands of jobs, Domino’s Pizza and Staples to name just a few of many.
Funny. Half of MA loves what Romney did, the other half hate him, maybe because he left after completing only one term. Maybe he is not a “career” politician, do you always need a “career” politician to get the job done?
Yes, he worked as the MA governor for his entire term for FREE!!! Who else would have done that!?
Yes, during his 4 years as governor MA ranked 49th in job creation for half of his term before moving up to 47th in his final year. Not a stellar record to some. Yet Romney also reduced corporate loopholes and cut state spending in order to cut taxes and increase consumer spending. MA had a huge deficit, about 3 Billion dollars when he started, and he left MA with a 600 million surplus and balanced budget at the end of his term (yes, he raised state “fees”, but still kept them below the national average). He can't help it if the government screwed up after he left.
MA’s super majority Democrat controlled legislature wanted desperately some kind of Universal Health care program. Romney worked with them to create one that would work, similar to mandated auto insurance (most states have such mandates). It is estimated that 98% of the residents are now covered. It was within projected budget (about 1% of the State budget) until Romney left and MA made changes to the program and now it is costing them. Romney believes that states -- not the federal government -- should be free to design their own plans for covering the uninsured if that is what they want to do.
Yes, he compromised on some political issues, again dealing with a super majority Democrat Legislature and Judicial Branch in MA, in order to keep the state government working together and moving forward.
He turned around a struggling 2002 Winter Olympics with millions in debt and made it into one of the most profitable Olympics in history. And only took a $1 dollar salary. Who else would have done that!?
He is against federalization and big government and believes in state’s rights to govern their own affairs.
He believes in marriage between a man and woman, the importance of family, and lives the example.
He is for a strong military and believes the borders should be better protected.
The list of real positives is far greater than the supposed list of negatives.
And the Democrat Party is most afraid of Romney.
... written by Halospawn , September 28, 2011
I support Mittens because he exemplifies many of the attributes I want to have when I grow-up. Yeah, he's rich, but most of it came from getting a good education and working hard--you know, the things your parents tried to instill. Mitten's is also pretty generous, giving away over $6,000,000 over the last decade. In addition to working 55-70 hour weeks, Mittens put in an average of 15-20 more hours per week as a lay minister, caring for the sick, afflicted, orphaned, and widowed. Unlike the millionaire heiresses that we see on TV lurking in nightclubs, Mittens built upon the legacy of his parents, trying to make them proud, and now he wants to ensure that America is restored to being the land of opportunity it once was. If you want Bush-lite, vote for puttering Perry, but if you want somebody that'll make America exceptional again, then Mitt Romney is your man.
... written by TexasPride , September 28, 2011
Good article. It is always good to see what baggage someone has before the general election.
Romney's baggage is all about social issues, mostly dating 10-15 years ago. Maybe he is a hypocrite or maybe he improved his views as he got older and wiser, that's up for debate.
Perry's baggage is about making tax-payers pay for the schooling of illegal immigrants, about saying he took $5000 from Merck when he took over $28,000, and about securing the border to protect America from terrorists, drug-traffickers, and illegals flooding into our country taking our jobs and changing our laws to become like South America.
Social issues vs. Economic issues? I have to go Romney on this one.
... written by Penny , September 28, 2011
We don't need to vote for Perry to get Bush Lite. We already have that as president. If Perry gets the nomination the choice will be between Bush Lite and Bush III.
... written by Blark , September 28, 2011
Candidates for Govenor of a state have to be residents of that state. States who elect govenors are comprised of individuals from all over the political spectrum, but overall and on average fall to more Liberal or Conservative sides. MA is, by any estimate, a very Liberal state --overall. So, should a conservative living in MA give up on the political process because "they cannot change things", or run a futile campagn with a platform that certainly will not fly, state wide, or be smart and determine what things you can change and what things you cannot? Mitt shows a lot of grit in taking the latter route. Now, he has an opportunity to run for the highest office in the land, and he is much more closely aligned, personally and morally, with the current conservative platform. That Perry has always been aligned, personally and morally, with the right extremes of the republican party in TX has not served him well. He has no idea how he would be perceived in a general election, and for that matter does not care. And if he were elected, would be as impotent (polarized from accomplishing anything) from the far right as Obama is today from the far left.
... written by Mary Waterton , September 29, 2011
Romney is just a democrat in a republican suit. He has changed his core values to suit his political aspirations and that is not really the kind of politician you want in the White House.
... written by Rob , September 29, 2011
Principles...ever heard of them. If Romney had actually "changed his mind," or grown "older and wiser," he would be fighting tooth and nails for those principles. Instead, he simply puts these "new" ideas into speeches and canned debate answers. Romney is an opportunist, and only worrys about what he has to say to get elected. While I don't like to use this example (because I typically think the opinions of celebrities aren't worth the spit that comes out when they speak), Ron Silver's transformation from liberal to conservative following the 9/11 attacks was backed up by action. Mitt, on the other hand, is a joke. If we want a true conservative, the choice is neither Romney nor Perry, but Santorum or Cain. Just my 2 cents...
... written by TexasPride , September 29, 2011
"If we want a true conservative, the choice is Santorum or Cain" you say?
Maybe a conservative EXPERIMENT. We are in the third year of a horrific experiment called Obama and neither of those two have run a government body. Perry and Romney both have.
Perry ran one with little resistance and succeeded in jobs attributed to low taxes, right-to-work state, oil/gas resources, republican legislature & court. He completely failed on healthcare and immigration.
Romney ran with great resistance and succeeded 3 of 4 years in job growth; he left the state with 4.7% unemployment, which is great compared to Perry's current 8.5%. His health care is more expensive but has the #1 most people insured in the US. He fixed a failing olympics, he has made his fortune in business, and he has by far the most experience of all the candidates.
Romney is not an experiment, and if we get hung up on someone changing their mind about social issues, then we will end up with another experiment. Or we'll end up with Perry and the borders won't get secured for another 4-8 years, further hurting the economy.
... written by Bob Reagan , September 30, 2011
Romney has one quality above all. He can beat Obama. I never get concerned about allegations of hypocrisy. Most often apparent hypocritical or inconsistent views are a result of having learned something since.
... written by Mark Kincaid , October 09, 2011
Romney's hypocrisy has a lot of company among the commenters.
... written by Buckmeister , October 14, 2011
The takeaway from this article is that Republicans say whaatever they think their audience wants to hear and then they do what they want, which is usually pay back the richest turds in the country who have ruined it for everybody else. Can you say liars?
... written by Bob Reagan , October 15, 2011
One who refers to those with whom they disagree with scatological epithets is generally an inarticulate ranter who quite understandably hides behind a pseudonym.
... written by Buckmeister , October 16, 2011
Our founding fathers like Ben Franklin and John Adams wrote under pseudonym's because we were ruled by George III who summarily tortured his political opponents, no different than today's illegal wiretaps and extraordinary rendition for torture. The day will come when you Nazis start worrying about your majority. It is written, the first ones now will later be last! Read your Bibles, don't just thump em.