Mittens may be richer than your average bear, but if the past two weeks of lackluster campaign coverage have taught us anything, it's backbones are hard to come by -- even for men with friends in high places.
If the Republican Presidential hopeful isn't busy backpeddling for an undercover video that revealed nothing more than -- big shocker -- he's a conservative who appears to have a decent grasp on the political game inside which he's currently a pawn, or catering to the media hounds who haven't shut up about his tax returns since what feels like before Obama even took office, his people are making excuses for the "abortion clause" that was reportedly included in his son Tagg's 2011 surrogate contract. That contract -- signed last summer by Tagg Romney and his wife, Jen -- was part of the deal that brought bouncing twin boys David Mitt and William Ryder into the world earlier this year. It was also at least partially bankrolled by Mitt himself.
TMZ reports paragraph thirteen of the contract included two clauses dealing with abortion; one giving the surrogate the right to make a decision about abortion should her health be in danger and the other giving Tagg and Jen the right to make such a decision, "in the event the child is determined to be physiologically, genetically or chromosomally abnormal". In response to criticism calling Mitt a hypocrite for funding a contract that guaranteed his son and daughter-in-law reproductive choice in a time when his own political party's position is set staunchly against choice for other women, the Romney family lawyer who was responsible for the contract has said the inclusion of those clauses was a mistake, assuring reporters they'd been removed from the couple's previous contract with the same surrogate in 2009.
The excuse does little good, of course. There's not an explanation under the sun that would appease liberals at this stage in the election season and it has only served to leave many conservatives spinning, wondering why the Romney camp is backpeddling and half-heartedly apologizing again, rather than owning the fact that any intended parent who was using a surrogate would want the right to decide if an abortion was to take place should -- heaven forbid -- the need for such a decision arise. Especially since the former Governor has defended abortion in the case of a threat to the mother's health before, and the latter of the clauses could be as simple as a protection against the babies being wrongfully terminated by the surrogate when Tagg and Jen would choose to raise the child in spite of any medical complications.
Instead, we'll endure another week in which liberal talking heads claw at canned headlines having no real bearing on the future of the country and conservatives sit around wondering why Mitt can't just own his shit. Today, it's his lack of backbone, not his liberal opponents and their non-news stories that pose the greatest threat to his campaign.
Who knows, maybe next week Barry will fumble another foreign policy play and we can all switch sides.
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