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Mitt Romney Lies About His Hunting Past

Posted on 1/3/2008 1:45:00 PM

Mitt Romney seems to have a problem telling the truth. Recently during a question-answer session in Keene, New Hampshire, Romney was caught on film telling a man with a National Rifle Association (NRA) cap, "I purchased a gun when I was a young man. I've been a hunter pretty much all my life.''

However the truth, as it turns out, is that Romney's hunting experience, is rather limited. Apparently, he has hunted only twice in his life. The first time was when he was fifteen years old and hunted rabbits while on his cousin's ranch in Idaho. The second time was in 2006 during a quail hunting trip on a fenced preserve in Georgia with donors to the Republican Governors Association.

Romney's statement therefore rightly attracted scrutiny. The spokesman for the Democratic National Committee, Damien LaVera, criticized him for misrepresenting facts. "Whether he's pretending to be a hunter, misleading people about loaning his campaign millions of dollars or signing a no-new-tax pledge he once mocked to hide his tax-raising record, he'll say absolutely anything to distance himself from his real record,'' he said.

However, Romney's campaign spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom responded saying that the real issue was Romney's support for the Second Amendment of the Constitution, or the right to keep and bear arms. "Governor Romney's support for the Second Amendment doesn't come from the fact he knows how to handle a firearm; it comes from his appreciation of the Constitution and the rights enshrined in it, including the right to keep and bear arms,'' he said, while listing various pro-gun legislations that had been signed by Romney while he was governor.

The NRA and the gun lobby have traditionally been supporters of the Republican Party, and this explains Romney's need to portray himself as a hunter and express his solidarity with them. It is pertinent to note that in the past Romney was more of a moderate who supported the Brady gun control law and stood for a ban on assault-style rifles. While running for Massachusetts governorship in 2002, he stood for stronger gun control and had passed legislation to that effect. Fabricating his 'hunting past' is nothing more than a ploy to get the gun lobby to support his bid for president.

 
 
 
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