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. Hogan's Goat

    I admit it would have been hilarious to see him tased and beaten, then cuffed and arrested, during the debate, but it wouldn't have saved his dad.

    October 24, 2012 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  2. Hope Dope

    is this part of the media's "Propping Up Tour" of Obama?

    October 24, 2012 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  3. Obamarotinhell

    Mitts Son has every right to feel angry at Obama and Biden.. both of them Interrupted His dads speeches !

    October 24, 2012 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  4. Jess

    Moving right along!

    October 24, 2012 12:28 pm at 12:28 pm |
  5. Linda

    While he is at it why not apologize for purchasing Voting Machines for Ohio ?. Shameful and just plain dirty....

    October 24, 2012 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  6. Bob

    "Mitts Son has every right to feel angry at Obama and Biden"

    Both of them have pointed out his numerous LIES. The truth hurts, huh, all you coward Rmoneys?

    Bishop Rmoney can NOT be trusted.

    October 24, 2012 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  7. Name

    Ok to feel angry but violence is not ansewr

    October 24, 2012 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  8. NoddaLib

    Obama said, “Islam has a proud tradition of tolerance."

    Obama said, "I consider it part of my responsibility as president of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear."

    Obama said, "As a student of history I understand more about civilization's debt to Islam . . ."

    October 24, 2012 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  9. Susan De Nadal

    Anyone else would have been immediatley detained, investigated, scrutinized and marginalized to he couldn't survive by the secret service. There are laws against even verbal threats to a sitting president. How is it that this jerk ,gets away with a simple apology? If this has turned into a free for all, then I have a few threats to make, epsecially if the people elect Romney.

    October 24, 2012 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  10. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I'm not impressed.
    42-year old Tagg Romney waited almost a whole week to apologize to the POTUS. That's kind of like saying "Oh I'll reach out to him next time we bump into each other". Not acceptable to me.
    Someone please inform Tagg Romney that Lawrence O'Donnell has NO SECRET SERVICE protecting him and has called his father a liar in front of millions of viewers.
    Go take a swing at him Tagg....and good luck putting your face back together.
    Obama 2012.

    October 24, 2012 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  11. Real American

    It just shows the level of disrespect him and his dad has for the POTUS. Purely Pathetic!!! They don't deserve to be inhabitants of the White House.

    October 24, 2012 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  12. me

    Good thing Romney's raising great kids *rolls eyes*

    October 24, 2012 12:36 pm at 12:36 pm |
  13. Maria

    @Hogan, I would have loved to see the same to Obama but then it wouldn't have saved the country.

    October 24, 2012 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  14. S Kyle

    A Mormon boy taking a swing at someone? It would have been funny to watch...

    October 24, 2012 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  15. chilirue

    It is truly amazing that when tactics used by Romney in previous debates over his last 8 years for a run at the presidency it seems quite telling that his sons, reared in their fathers image can't take it when it is turned on them by a worthy opponent. Just vote, that will tell it all...

    October 24, 2012 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  16. CiSono

    The only thing bigger than this man's secret, out-sourced trust fund is his ego...inherited from his father, I presume... Taking a swing at Obama is the only thing that has been truthful coming from that family!!

    October 24, 2012 12:41 pm at 12:41 pm |
  17. Piscesgal609

    If this was the other way around, they would have arrested Obama's son for threatening the prez or attempting to do bodily harm or something. Outrageous that he even got away with it. Dems are so weak.

    October 24, 2012 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  18. Patrick Doyle

    Cuff the kid and put him through what any other person making a comment like that would be subjected to. That's threat against the president no matter how you look at it. Poor little rich kid.

    October 24, 2012 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  19. Laura

    This is such a non-issue in this race. Of course you feel that way if a family member is in a contentious election. The Main Stream Media media is making much more out of this that what it really is. Now if they would just focus on some actual important news like Obama Administration's complete mishandling of the Libya terrorist attact they would gain a little more of my respect back.

    October 24, 2012 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  20. Doodad

    I wouldn't blame him if he did. NOBAMA

    October 24, 2012 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  21. Rich

    This is how you respond when you know your father can't defend himself.

    October 24, 2012 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  22. Name

    That fool is just like his father

    October 24, 2012 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  23. CNNuthin

    Nothing like electing a family raised to think that assault and battery is an alternative or solution for a verbal disagreement.
    "That brother has slugged me a couple of times," – Josh Romney
    “He can’t look like that. That’s wrong. Just look at him!” – Mitt Romney a day before him and his friends FORCIBLY held down a student at his high school and cut off his hair.

    October 24, 2012 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  24. tkindsm

    I don't blame Tagg at all. It also shows the type of man he is to be able to apologize face to face when he knew he was wrong. When was the last time you heard Obama apologize for being wrong which he was on many occasions during the debates.

    October 24, 2012 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  25. Deb in MT

    @LoverofTruth and cmkc: excellent points about this being a class D felony. And, yes, I'm just imagining the kind of reaction I would get from making a similar 'joke' when boarding an aircraft (teehee, do I set off my underwear bomb now, or after takeoff?) Yep, it wouldn't be pretty.

    Tagg is not a little kid: he's in his 40's for crying out loud! He's old enough to show some restraint and a little maturity! I suspect that Malia and Sasha–subjected as they have been to the most vile attacks against their parents–in person, on TV, radio, and in the Halls of Congress–have experienced some of the same frustrations as this middle aged man, but at their very young ages already have too much sense and class to say so publicly. (A teenage Chelsea Clinton also had more class.)

    I have another take on Tagg's "apology": his little 'joke' probably wasn't playing well with independent voters being targetted by the R/R campaign–as Mitt reinvents himself once more for the final lag of the 'being all things to all people' tour–so he had to man up & apologize.

    If Tagg had made the same comment during the Primaries, the GOP red meat crowd would have loved it and there would have been no apology.

    October 24, 2012 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
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