The Romney family is not ready for primetime. Tagg Romney made waves yesterday when he told a radio host he wanted to take a swing at the President during the debate. Today, the Romney campaign is taking the bullies defense saying he was “just joking.”
Here’s Tagg Romney in an interview with North Carolina radio station saying he wanted to take a swing at the President but didn’t because Secret Service was there via Buzzfeed:
Radio host Bill Lumaye (who, from his info page, appears to be on par with Glenn Beck — fyi), “I’m going to ask something I think a lot of people want to know, or at least I do. What is it like for you to hear the President of the United States call your dad a liar. How do you react to that?”
Tagg Romney responded, “You want to jump out of your seat, and you want to rush down to the debate stage and take a swing at him.”
Tagg continued, “But you know you can’t do that, because — well, first, because there’s a lot of Secret Servce between you and him — but also because this is just the nature of the process. They’re going to try to do everything they can do to make my dad into something he’s not.”
For the record, President Obama never called Mitt Romney a “liar”, though he did correctly point out inaccuracies and inconsistencies in Romney’s stated positions. President Obama did accuse Romney of not telling the truth, but then, Governor Romney was not telling the truth.
We don’t generally have the family of politicians take to the media to express their desire for physical violence, no matter how unfair they feel the process is. This process is, after all, meant to test them as well as the candidate. They are all auditioning for the job, and part of that process is seeing how they handle the pressure of a strong opponent.
A campaign aide has explained it all away, saying Tagg was only joking. Really? Like his father was joking when held down the kid with the long hair so he could cut his hair? “Just joking” is the standard bully defense. You can’t take a joke because you’re too sensitive, not because the bully was completely out of line.
Tagg was laughing in part of his answer, but that doesn’t make the words he chose to use okay. First Families do not have the luxury of making “jokes” about physical violence, and since his father is not currently President, Tagg Romney is just another citizen saying he wanted to hit the President of the United States. Were he anyone else, this might earn him a visit from Secret Service.
Can you imagine the son of the President saying something like this about another American or leader of a foreign country, let alone the President of the United States, on the radio? Oh, hey Putin, Tagg was just kidding! Don’t bomb us! Heh heh.
Tagg might have given away the store when asked how his father feels before a debate. He said, “Are you kidding? He’s terrified before he gets out there!” The entourage of the bully lashes out when the bully is frightened.
Tagg Romney is no child – he was born in 1970. He is not Bristol Palin, a child who doesn’t know what she doesn’t know. Tagg is a grown man. He needs to apologize, but something tells me he wasn’t brought up to take responsibility for himself when he’s wrong. It’s ironic that on Tuesday night, Mitt Romney told us that violence was the fault of single parenting. Go figure.
Instead of apologizing like the clean cut conservative the Romneys present themselves as, Tagg and Gang will snicker in the bullies defense and find new and cuter ways of insinuating violent fantasies against the President, letting the listeners know exactly what he’d like done to this President just in case they missed it the first time around.
Can you imagine how big the cross of victimization would be if President Obama’s 40 ish son said he wanted to take a swing at Romney? We would never hear the end of the “thug” values – -but it’s okay with conservatives when rich white people act like thugs. In fact, they seem to take sick pleasure in it.
Ms. Jones is the co-founder/ editor-in-chief of PoliticusUSA and a member of the White House press pool.
Sarah hosts Politicus News and co-hosts Politicus Radio. Her analysis has been featured on several national radio, television news programs and talk shows, and print outlets including Stateside with David Shuster, as well as The Washington Post, The Atlantic Wire, CNN, MSNBC, The Week, The Hollywood Reporter, and more.
Sarah is a member of the Society of Professional Journalists.
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