Romney's son apologizes to Obama for 'swing' remark
October 23rd, 2012
08:34 PM ET
10 years ago

Romney's son apologizes to Obama for 'swing' remark

(CNN) – Tagg Romney, Mitt Romney's oldest son, apologized to President Barack Obama Monday for saying he wanted to "take a swing" at him during contentious presidential debates.

Obama and Tagg Romney were seen speaking on the stage after Monday's final presidential debate, held at Lynn University in Boca Raton, Florida. Two Obama aides said the conversation included an apology for the remark, made last week during a radio interview.

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Asked in that interview what it's like "to hear the President of the United States call your dad a liar," Tagg Romney joked about his fantasy response.

"Jump out of your seat and you want to rush down to the debate stage and take a swing at him," he said. "But you know you can't do that because, well, first because there's a lot of Secret Service between you and him, but also because that's the nature of the process. You know they're going to try to do anything they can do to make my dad into something he's not."

"We signed up for it, we've got to kind of sit there and take our punches, and send them the other way," he continued.

One of Tagg Romney's brothers, Josh, downplayed the comments in an interview on ABC's "The View."

"That brother has slugged me a couple of times," Josh Romney said. "I'm sure President Obama has nothing to worry about."

Asked about the original comments on Thursday, Romney campaign spokeswoman Amanda Henneberg said Tagg Romney was "joking about how frustrating this process can be for family."

CNN's Rachel Streitfeld contributed to this report.

Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney • President Obama • Presidential Debate
soundoff (1,021 Responses)
  1. Cooper

    If I was the President, I wouldn't have accepted his apology. Politics is a tough business and you need to be able to think at all times before you speak. Of course, if the Republicans did that (think before speaking), we would never hear from them. All and all, not a bad deal.

    October 24, 2012 11:12 am at 11:12 am |
  2. Who cares

    Does anyone reading this, actually care? I was hoping for something more than this. Are we going to start reading that the president sent a text while taking a dump the other night?

    October 24, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  3. Name mary

    I don't think he was joking, by the way I find it inappropriate conduct!!

    October 24, 2012 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  4. topfuel500

    So I guess that is what Mormon teaches, to strike first ask questions later..kind of like his dad. The kid never said it was wrong to think that way, just there were to many people around...great Christian attitude.....teach them well.

    October 24, 2012 11:15 am at 11:15 am |
  5. Pdub

    John Wesley had some good advice for us, saying “I met those of our society who had votes in the ensuing election, and advised them,
    1. To vote without fee or reward for the person they judged most worthy:
    2. To speak no evil of the person they voted against: And,
    3. To take care their spirits were not sharpened against those that had voted on the other side.” (October 6, 1774)

    October 24, 2012 11:17 am at 11:17 am |
  6. Liane

    Ok does nobody understand sarcasm anymore? Tagg said that as a hypothetical SARCASTIC comment. If someone was attacking everything my father has ever done I would kind of want to slug him too. But he admitted that he understands how politics work and he did the responsible thing and apologized. Now if only we could get that idiot Obama to man up and apologize for lying to the country over the last 4 years this country might start turning around.

    October 24, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  7. kentuckywoman

    I'm sure that Sasha wanted to kick Mitt in the shins a couple of times too.

    October 24, 2012 11:18 am at 11:18 am |
  8. cmkc

    All of you Romney apologists – turn the table........ if Pres. Obama had a son who threatned to take swing at Romney, you'd be calling him a thug, a hood and decrying the incident and clamoring for his arrest.

    October 24, 2012 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  9. Jessica

    He should have known better, especially since his father is a public figure and you would think Tagg Romeny would show a little bit more decorum and restraint when speaking to the media. But then, given the accusations of Mitt Romney being a bully during his college years, I can't say that I'm really surprised.

    October 24, 2012 11:19 am at 11:19 am |
  10. Smarter than U

    Much ado about nothing. I am sure the President took it with aplomb. Kudos to SNL on their take of it.

    October 24, 2012 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  11. Name Pamala Tucker Williams

    People should think before they speak. The president is in great shape you know just saying.

    October 24, 2012 11:21 am at 11:21 am |
  12. Virginia

    Mitt wants the presidency because it is something he has never had before, like a new toy.

    October 24, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  13. becky

    he is not a teenager or a child- he is a grown man!

    October 24, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  14. achtman

    Just as bad as Tagg's comment was the way he held his hand on the president's back as he apologized. Overfamiilar and condescending.

    October 24, 2012 11:23 am at 11:23 am |
  15. SLD

    It's not an apology we need from Romney's son, it's an immediate divestment of his shares in the company that owns Ohio's voting machines. Do the Republicans really want to be known as the party that ONLY gets its candidates elected under dubious circumstances?

    October 24, 2012 11:24 am at 11:24 am |
  16. Bernard St Louis

    Tagg Romney meant what he said taught entatain words reveal. Apology should be made on national TV.

    October 24, 2012 11:25 am at 11:25 am |
  17. Bob

    Bishop Rmoneys entire family has no morals, no character, and no courage.

    They are all liars and cheats.


    Tagg should be drug out in the alley and horse whipped.

    October 24, 2012 11:26 am at 11:26 am |
  18. Hank

    Little Lord father like son.

    He may not be the one running for president, but he comes from the same environment.

    October 24, 2012 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  19. Doug

    Who doesn't want to punch the president? Nothing to see here.

    October 24, 2012 11:27 am at 11:27 am |
  20. Daniel

    Most people would not have the courage and conviction to apologize face to face as Tagg did. His original comment was obviously wrong and extreme, but his willingness to apologize face-to-face is impressive.

    October 24, 2012 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  21. Woody

    Most people would have been arrested for making such a comment in America . Is the presidential candidates son above the law ?

    October 24, 2012 11:29 am at 11:29 am |
  22. Paul

    Tag, Tag, Tag... you can do anything you want and apologize later. Right? President Obama is man enough not to let comments like yours bother him. If he can resist comments on his race, he sure as heck can handle comments from someone like you and your dad.

    October 24, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  23. News Reader

    Hey – this was already reported after the debate. Why are you recycling the same story?????

    October 24, 2012 11:30 am at 11:30 am |
  24. Lookbothweis

    It was just simple humor. I especially like his brother's response.

    October 24, 2012 11:31 am at 11:31 am |
  25. Phil

    He should apologize to the American people. He didn't respect the office nor our country.

    October 24, 2012 11:34 am at 11:34 am |
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