Mitt Romney is a busy, busy guy. As he relaxed for the holidays, he told the Washington Post he didn’t have time for a phone interview to discuss the apparent inconsistencies in his positions on gay marriage, abortion, or just about anything else. He had no time to chat by phone about his run to the left in 1994 and his jog back to the right in 2006-2007. Or did he?
Just a week later he granted a phone interview to Human Events blogger Robert Bluey. Apparently it was all in the timing of the request. Dan Balz was just off on that.
Now I would have great respect for any politician willing to tell the mainstream media to go screw itself. I would be thrilled if what he actually said was, “I have time for an interview, but not for YOU to interview me. You’ll just screw it up and take everything out of context anyway.” But this wasn’t that. This was far, far worse.
This was, “I don’t want to talk to the Washington Post about my inconsistencies, because they’ll ask tough follow up questions. Instead, I want to grant this interview to a blogger who will just be happy to get the call and not dive deeply into my contradictions.”
The evidence is there. Just read the transcript.
[Romney:] No, actually, my view on marriage has been entirely consistent over my political career. And that is that I oppose same-sex marriage. I also oppose civil unions.
There are some people who feel that is inconsistent with also encouraging the elimination of discrimination against gay people as well as others of differences. I‚Äôm very much opposed to discrimination. I also recognize that it‚Äôs not wise to create a special class and establish new rights for any particular group. But I‚Äôm opposed to discrimination.
At the same time, I‚Äôm opposed to same-sex marriage. And ever since that feature has become a prominent one in my state, with the decision of the Supreme Judicial Court, I have taken every action that I could conceive of within the bounds of the law to defend traditional marriage and to stop same-sex marriage.
Well. That certainly clears it up, right? That answer surely didn’t leave an opening for a follow-up question. It closed the door firmly, right? No way Bluey could have challenged that! Nope!
Well, ok… Maybe he could have said, “Umm… I’m curious. I get the position on same sex marriage, but why are you opposed to civil unions, too? How is that consistent with anti-discrimination philosophies? Aren’t you, in effect, doing exactly what you caution against and advocate for the creation of a protected right for a very specific protected class? Isn’t that what restricting marriage and legal unions only to heterosexuals does?”
Romney chose to face a blog interview because he didn’t want to face tough questions – and he chose wisely. Bluey’s follow up question about a log-cabin Republican endorsement was exactly the sort of stupid thing bloggers will ask. If Romney continues to dodge reporters in favor of blog interviews, you know he’s ducking responsibility for his past.