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Romney Says Craig's
Actions 'Disappointing'

When aides to former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney booked him on CNBC's Kudlow & Company Tuesday, it probably wasn't to discuss sexual solicitation in an airport mens room.

But there it was -- the first question for Romney: "What is your comment on the Craig problem, sir?"

"Well, very disappointing," Romney said of Larry Craig, the Idaho senator who was heading up Romney's campaign efforts in that state. That comment echoed the statement from his campaign when Craig's arrest became public yesterday.

Perhaps a segue to a to another topic -- sub prime loans, or currency devaluation? -- would have been a better choice. But Romney was on a roll, according to a transcript provided by CNBC:

"Once again, we've found people in Washington have not lived up to the level of respect and dignity that we would expect for somebody that gets elected to a position of high influence," Romney said. "Very disappointing. He's no longer associated with my campaign, as you can imagine. He resigned just today. And you know, he was one of those who was helping my effort, and I'm sorry to see that he has fallen short."

Romney declined to endorse a call for Craig's resignation, saying he did not have enough information. But he went on to compare the situation to Bill Clinton's White House infidelities and former Rep. Mark Foley's emails with Capitol Hill pages.

"Yeah, I think it reminds us of Mark Foley and Bill Clinton. I think it reminds us of the fact that people who are elected to public office continue to disappoint, and they somehow think that if they vote the right way on issues of significance or they can speak a good game, that we'll just forgive and forget," he said. "And the truth of the matter is, the most important thing we expect from elected--an elected official is a level of dignity and character that we can point to for our kids and our grandkids, and say, `Hey, someday I hope you grow up and you're someone like that person.' And we've seen disappointment in the White House, we've seen it in the Senate, we've seen it in Congress. And frankly, it's disgusting."

And then he continued, egged on by host Larry Kudlow, who asked him to expand on the Clinton-Foley comparison. "I'm not sure I need to," Romney said. "I think we've all heard the story about Bill Clinton and the fact that he let us down in his personal conduct with a--with a White House intern. And that strikes me as another one of these extraordinary acts of falling short of what America would expect of elected officials, particularly one who should be held to a higher standard."

And then a question about Clinton's impeachment and another about the morality of public officials. Still Romney had more to say.

"Well, it does say, in my view, that some people in the public sphere expect that once they've been elected to something, they're prominent, that they're--that they're above the law, that they won't get caught, that people will give them a break, that they--that they somehow can live a different morality," he said. "And the truth of the matter is, if there's a different morality they should live, it should be a high--a higher level of morality. And if they've been involved in any discretion in their life, they should cease that discretion by the time they become elected, and should try and set an example in the way they live, which is consistent with the things they say. And you know, that's hard for everyone. But certainly, expecting people to live a life consistent with the dignity of the office to which they're elected is something which the American people should be able to count on."

--Michael D. Shear

By Washington Post editors  |  August 28, 2007; 6:20 PM ET
 
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Comments

Let's not forget that the real problem with Republicans is that they are murderers and torturers.

Posted by: rhodes.tim | August 29, 2007 3:23 PM | Report abuse

Yes, Labeau, a 21-year-old intern is a grown woman. She can even legally have a beer.

What a tool you are.

Posted by: Spectator2 | August 29, 2007 2:15 PM | Report abuse

Again, Romney shows his colors-threw Craig under the bus because the man might be bisexual! Maybe now the idea that homosexuality is a "choice" can be put to rest-why would Craig choose that?

Posted by: abiodunaodeleye | August 29, 2007 1:18 PM | Report abuse

A 21 year old intern is a grown woman? No power differences there.
Liberals are the most two face loonies, in the world. They don't even realize "Animal Farm" was a book about them.
And is it any wonder Criag would support Mitt? Say what you want Mitt is Gorgeous!
Hey Liberals does Hillary take money from chinese felonies? AAA YEA!
She need to go dry with the rest of them, or the $90000 in the freezer.

Posted by: labeau | August 29, 2007 1:11 PM | Report abuse

See, that's the problem with the republicans. Forget their political ideology, (smaller government, no new taxes, etc.). They are mean spirited and lack tolerance. They preach family values and a moral way of life, and then it seems that several of their leaders have been caught wallowing in the mud. Male republican senators trying to get dates with male interns. Male religious leaders sleeping with male prostitutes and doing drugs for experimentation, and now male senators cruising restrooms for sex. WOW. And the religious right says we democrats have no morals! (Seems they hate gays and lesbians, yet the leaders that are being caught lately are republican males chasing other males for gay sex!) Now I am not condoning any of these acts, but if republicans didn't make such a big deal of morals, all of these unfortunate incidences would be stand-alone news items for all involved, but not stains on the entire Republican Party. If the Republican Party wants to right itself it must stop trying to have the edge on morals and pass judgment on others. (Hmm, didn't I learn that in church as a child?). Stick to the politics of governing, not deciding what my lifestyle should be. Republicans should try to be more inclusive. Don't worry about whom I sleep with or my ethnicity. I want some of the same things that republicans want, but I won't support them because of their lack of tolerance. Oh, and stop dragging Bill Clinton into your arguments against debauchery. Monica was at least a grown consenting woman. His bad judgment was forgetting he was married and doing it in the Oval office.

Posted by: fifthandsackett | August 29, 2007 11:56 AM | Report abuse

To those talking about background checks, since when is discrimination based on sexual preference legal? Craig's crime isn't his alleged sexual preference.

Posted by: mikeVA1 | August 29, 2007 1:11 AM | Report abuse

The most important thing that we expect from our public officials is competent government and lack of hypocrisy. Clinton didn't get elected screaming how he was holier and purer and more moral than everyone else in the world. What he did was tell an Investigator to screw off when asked about things he had no business asking about; an affair with a consenting adult. This self-hating homosexual hypocrite was busted (and he pled guilty) to trying to have anonymous sex with a stranger in an airport. This hypocrite has spent his entire political career pandering to the ultra-right, homo-hating, holier than thou crowd who decry the horrible decay of morality and family values in America (because of the Democrats in power, no doubt)while secretly engaging, not in a loving, committed relationship with another human being (male or female) but with another deviant who gets off on clandestine homosexual encounters in public rest rooms. Vote Republican and lock up you children.

Posted by: thebobbob | August 29, 2007 12:30 AM | Report abuse

I am trying to figure out is he was driving backwards when his dog pooped on the windshield...

I think I could get my teenage son to give him lying lessons. I'm sure we could reach a reasonable price... maybe $500 per hour.

Posted by: damnjmail | August 29, 2007 12:22 AM | Report abuse

Posted by: KYJurisDoctor | August 28, 2007 10:52 PM | Report abuse

Yea, it's about Bill Clinton again, isn't it? Clinton had sex with a grown and very extroverted women who WANTED sex. This is more like the revelation that Jeff Gannon was really a male prostitute and had access to the White House on a regular basis - just not for Larry Craig, though. And what did he say to the cop... "what do you think about that"?
That's what I say, too.

Posted by: bobcra | August 28, 2007 10:24 PM | Report abuse

Comparing this to Clinton is of course just pandering to his base. Clinton had consenting sex between adults in a private setting. Craig was hitting on a cop in a public restroom. Comparing the 2 is reaching quite a bit.

Posted by: MarcMyWords | August 28, 2007 9:23 PM | Report abuse

Since Craigs sexuality had been an issue for two decades, doesn't anyone do back-ground checks anymore?

Posted by: morningglory51 | August 28, 2007 8:00 PM | Report abuse

Good for Governor Romney. He did and said exactly what he should have. Butch Dillon may be happy to tolerate hypocrisy among the Democrats, but that doesn't mean Republicans should tolerate it in their party. Governor Romney's comments show his understanding of the impact that public service has on the character of the nation. Few are willing to so stridently rebuke such behavior because they do not adhere to such standards. This story isn't about Mitt Romney, however. It's about Larry Craig and his own personal hypocrisy. Remember, Presidential candidates don't choose their supporters, it happens the other way around.

Posted by: Brucer1 | August 28, 2007 7:25 PM | Report abuse

An interesting reaction from Romney for sure. But what does it say about his ability to discern allies from idiots when appointing high ranking aides to his campaign effort? And listen to him play the Clinton card yet again when Foley, Craig, Hastert, Gingrich, Bob Allen and Vitters have all done the same and then proved themselves unworthy of their shallow Christian, Republican family values. Eventually, we are all going to discover that Mitt and Lindsey Graham are boyfriends, and then it will be time to hang Romney out to dry with the others.

Posted by: ButchDillon | August 28, 2007 7:15 PM | Report abuse

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