“I meant to say my sons … I would definitely consult with my sons.”
Not content to let the moment pass away, former Massachusetts Governor, and Republican Presidential candidate Mitt Romney hounded news media this morning, attempting to clarify his gaffe in answering a question in Tuesday’s Republican Candidate Debate in Dearborn, Michigan.
In what was supposed to be the spotlight-stealing debut of Fred Thompson, has been anything but.
Romney, with his answer, reinforced the public image of the candidate, that of a cold, passionless, calculating business executive.
In the debate, co-moderator Chris Matthews put to Romney a hypothetical question;
MATTHEWS: Governor Romney, that raises the question, if you were president of the United States, would you need to go to Congress to get authorization to take military action against Iran’s nuclear facilities?
ROMNEY: You sit down with your attorneys and tell you want you have to do, but obviously the president of the United States has to do what’s in the best interest of the United States to protect us against a potential threat. The president did that as he was planning on moving into Iraq and received the authorization of Congress…
MATTHEWS: Did he need it?
ROMNEY: You know, we’re going to let the lawyers sort out what he needed to do and what he didn’t need to do. But, certainly, what you want to do is to have the agreement of all the people- leadership of our government as well as our friends around the world where those circumstances are available.
Romney has been ridiculed and lampooned since, including during the debate, when fellow candidate, Texas Congressman Ron Paul fired back at the former Governor “This idea of going and talking to attorneys totally baffles me. Why don’t we just open up the Constitution and read it? You’re not allowed to go to war without a declaration of war.”
Romney’s campaign office has been on overdrive, firing out a blizzard of press releases and statements, all shouting how the candidate would consult with his sons before taking the military action suggested in the debate question.
One release obtained by The Garlic reads, in part “The experience the Romney boys have received serving their country during this campaign has been immeasurable. The Governor is confident, that if called upon, his sons would give sound, professional advise as to any military action considered. These boys are veterans now, they have the campaign battle scars, and they would act accordingly.”
Earlier this year, in August, Romney credited his sons with serving their country, versus enlisting in the military, by working on his presidential campaign;
“One of the ways my sons are showing support for our nation is helping me get elected because they think I’d be a great president.”
Romney later attempted to claim the remark was taken out-of-context, however, the five sons of Romney, according to sources, never came off the campaign battlefield.
“Look,” pleaded Romney, attempting to hold the attention of a group of reporters, “no other candidate in this race – in either party – has my sons … I know they can deliver, they can advise and I am eager for the opportunity to show that … When I am elected President, they will be at my side, ready to continue serving …”
The campaign office also went to great lengths to say that Romney would not seek council on military or national security matters from former campaign manager Jay Garrity, who allegedly was caught, earlier this year, impersonating a police officer.
With rumors circulating, neither Romney, or any of his staff would confirm reports that the campaign was firing all the lawyers working on it, as a means to dispel any conflicts, or suggestions, that Romney was letting the lawyers conduct his military or national security policy.
Additionally, staffers were given copies of a joke book, a compilation of lawyer jokes, to better handle any inquiries about Romney’s debate answer.