October 25th, 2007
05:49 PM ET
12 years ago

Romney takes on Clinton 'family values'

Watch Romney's comments on family values Wednesday.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney criticized the "family values" of the Clinton presidency Thursday, saying as president he would set a better example.

"One of the ways that you help instill, if you will, family values is by having a White House be a place that demonstrates family values," the Massachusetts Republican said in a response to a question at a New Hampshire house party about how he would instill family values as president.

"And, you know, I think during the last Clinton presidency, the White House did not demonstrate that in a way that was helpful to our nation's culture," Romney added.

New York Sen. Hillary Clinton, wife of former President Bill Clinton, is the frontrunner for the Democratic presidential nomination.

Romney went on to say that the president is under a "microscope," making it especially important to "live by higher standards."

"Because the world is looking at you, you're representing not only yourself but your country," he added. "The kids or America are looking at you. One piece [of instilling values] is acting the part, acting the part of higher ethical standards."

Responding to Romney's comments, top Clinton adviser Howard Wolfson said, "Hillary Clinton needs no lessons on character from a man who switches his positions on a daily basis."

- CNN Ticker Producer Alexander Mooney

Filed under: Hillary Clinton • Mitt Romney • New Hampshire
soundoff (173 Responses)
  1. ray, san jose, ca

    Apparently he doesn't think tolerance is a family value.

    October 25, 2007 06:06 pm at 6:06 pm |
  2. Derrick, Chicago, IL

    I am so tired of politicians running on "family values." You know who is in charge of instilling "family values" into my family? ME, and my FAMILY... not some politician.

    As a gay man, I also am tired of the phrase "family values" being a euphamism for "protecting marriage from the evil gay people." If you want to protect marriage, make it harder to get a divorce.

    Now here are a few "family values" I would support:

    1. Make sure the children in all families have access to health care.

    2. Don't send my brothers and sisters off to die in a war with no purpose.

    3. Make sure that there is economic stability so my family can eat.

    4. Leave your religion out of my government so I can decide for myself how I will choose to have a relationship with God.

    Now THERE are a few family values I could support!

    October 25, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  3. Daniel SLC UT

    Hillary didn't cheat, Bill did. Hillary did the Christian thing and FORGAVE her husband.

    Rommey is a mormon, they're not suppose to have more than one wife on earth but in heaven it's a differnt story. I would know I grew up Mormon and believe me you don't want a Mormon running are country.

    October 25, 2007 06:10 pm at 6:10 pm |
  4. Tired of Bull, Foster City, CA

    This from a man who has a wide stance on the issues!

    October 25, 2007 06:11 pm at 6:11 pm |
  5. Daniel, New York, NY

    Too bad for Romney that Clinton always crushes in him polls. Like today's general election poll from Florida.

    October 25, 2007 06:12 pm at 6:12 pm |
  6. Eduardo, LA, CA

    Values and examples begin at home and set by parents. Granted it is important to have someone with high moral standards represent our nation. However, that's why we have free elections and the power to vote in this great nation of ours.

    I also believe we can change a point of view or belief which is called personal growth and/or development.

    October 25, 2007 06:13 pm at 6:13 pm |
  7. C in Kansas City, Missouri

    Mitt, if you would only tilt your head a little for the camera, we would be able to not just hear about it, but would be able to see your halo.

    October 25, 2007 06:17 pm at 6:17 pm |
  8. John from America

    Now isn't it interesting that the mittster can talk about a simple indiscretion at the White House but, he seems to approve of the presidency of Bushie. How about the official outing of a CIA agent (and by association 49 others in the nuclear non-proliferation section) – not serious? How about distorting the facts and bringing the country into Iraq desperately searching for WMD's, not serious? The list is much too long to describe here but, the fact remains Mitt wants to continue the policies of DICK and GEORGE! It's time to move the GOP out of the White House they are too corrupt, too greedy and absolutely too dangerous! VOTE DEMOCRAT in 2008!

    October 25, 2007 06:21 pm at 6:21 pm |
  9. Sean, Long Island, New York

    It's interesting that, considering Mr. Romney believes a President's life would be under a microscope that he did not choose he words more carefully. According to Mr. Romney, he would do an excellent job "acting" the part of a morally upright leader. In all honesty, I don't care if my leaders are morally upright or not. However, I certainly do care if their putting on an act hoping that all of us will smile, nod, and buy the whole show.

    October 25, 2007 06:23 pm at 6:23 pm |
  10. Rodney Dallas TX

    Romney is such a hypcrit. He says Hillary doesn't have "family values" because she stayed with Bill when he cheated on her. If she had left Bill, Romney would be saying the had no "family values" because she did not fight to keep her marriage together. He'll say whatever he thinks hypocrits like him want to hear. He will NEVER be president so I don't even know why he's still talking.

    October 25, 2007 06:25 pm at 6:25 pm |
  11. Kris Murphy - Huntsville, Alabama

    I think it is clear that in today's society, we should have a VERY GOOD example residing at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue. Clearly the privately disfunctional Clinton family is a failure; and the public side of the Clinton's is a disaster (vs.a sincere, functioning family unit).

    If one looks at the increasing rate of single parent homes in the US, then it is clear the the President SHOULD BE a VERY GOOD example to the young people out there.... unlike Bill Clinton (whom every young rap hip hopper must admire for his frequent "relationships.")

    I think also that Hillary is setting a poor example for young women in that she exudes the compromise of family/love for power and position.

    By the way, who is Hillary having sex with? It can't be Bill? Don't we have a right to know whom the "President" is sleeping with?

    October 25, 2007 06:26 pm at 6:26 pm |
  12. monica, rochster new york

    So Mitt changes his position every day, and HRC changes hers every quarter. I don't see much difference between Hillary and the Republicans.

    October 25, 2007 06:28 pm at 6:28 pm |
  13. Anonymous

    Too bad he's mormom. LOL amirite?

    October 25, 2007 06:30 pm at 6:30 pm |
  14. Rob T, Pacifica, CA

    At least the Clinton's didn't wear magic pajamas.

    October 25, 2007 06:49 pm at 6:49 pm |
  15. Fred Anderson, Phoenix, AZ

    Oh I see. You pull any comments at CNN that aren't pro Clinton.

    October 25, 2007 06:55 pm at 6:55 pm |
  16. Joe, DC

    Mitt: When Giuliani gets the nod for the Repubs, we know we can count on you–consistent politician that you are–to support Sen. Clinton, who has worked hard to make her marriage work, over Rudy, the thrice-married libertine with a thrice-married wife with whom he was having an open affair while still married to wife number two.

    October 25, 2007 06:56 pm at 6:56 pm |
  17. Buggie, San Diego, CA

    Mr. Romney,

    Do you mean “family values” like hate-mongering and mud-slinging? Your personal attacks on Mrs. Clinton and her family show the true nature of your withering soul.

    The last time I checked, Mrs. Clinton was a successful mother, wife and career woman who is one of the most respected women in America.

    A “higher ethical standard”?…You don’t seem to know anything about the subject.

    October 25, 2007 07:04 pm at 7:04 pm |
  18. flipper ny ny

    To Wayne, Greenville, Texas

    You deserve the Medal of Freedom, your excellent research and presentation, we hope, will free us from this hypocritical and FLIP FLOPPER, no need to mention the name.

    October 25, 2007 07:11 pm at 7:11 pm |
  19. Lance in Monrovia CA

    Here's Hilary Clinton's views on change. It's probably the best political commentary I've ever seen on you tube. Cannot recommend enough.

    Here's the link; http://youtube.com/watch?v=5c0eLVYbnI4

    October 25, 2007 07:12 pm at 7:12 pm |
  20. Juan Frei

    Top Clinton adviser Howard Wolfson's comments are childish.

    "Hillary Clinton needs no lessons on character from a man who switches his positions on a daily basis."

    Does America really deserve a political climate such as the one we have now? It's really sad.

    October 25, 2007 07:18 pm at 7:18 pm |
  21. Keith, Ann Arbor, MI


    That was the most ignorant, small minded, bigoted thing I've ever heard. It's obvios that you know nothing about Mormons. Why don't you go after him for the right reasons. For example, he's a pandering slimball with no principles. He's made it very easy.

    October 25, 2007 07:21 pm at 7:21 pm |
  22. JT, Ada OK

    Romney is so right.

    CNN, please don't post comments with obscenities in them. Get with the program.

    October 25, 2007 07:24 pm at 7:24 pm |
  23. Marilyn Gottier

    If the report I read was correct, the parents of Romney's wife, Anne, were not allowed to attend the wedding because they were not Mormons. What kind of president would he make for those of us that do not believe as he does? I say Hillary stood by her marriage vows!!

    October 25, 2007 07:25 pm at 7:25 pm |
  24. Karen,nj

    I want tax payers money used for stem cell research. It is just a stem cell! We want cures for diseases and animal research does not work. People are dying all the time because these religious, family loving hypocrites in Washington don't think that it is moral. It's what the people want and they seem to keep forgetting that.

    October 25, 2007 07:43 pm at 7:43 pm |
  25. Kim, Peabody MA

    Find out the TRUTH about ROMNEY and what he did in MASSACHUSETTS !!!


    We need a president that will DEFEND the US Constitution! Vote Pete Grasso in 2008 !


    October 25, 2007 07:52 pm at 7:52 pm |
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