Monday, November 12, 2007

Three Prior Presidents were Childless like Candidate Richardson

End of the Line

[C]ompared to the idealized presidential image, there’s one big thing Richardson lacks: kids. . . . Greenfield asks Richardson whether being childless harms his White House chances. Richardson’s response:

“Someone once used it against me or implied it in a race. The explanation is that Barbara and I tried to have children, but we weren’t able to. We tried. We tried in vitro. It’s one of our great regrets.”
. . .
Asked why he never adopted a child, the 59-year-old Richardson tells Playboy, “We were always moving. I was in Congress, commuting back to New Mexico…Time passed us by.”

While Richardson doesn’t have the progeny backdrop Mitt Romney or John Edwards can deploy at a moment’s notice, if elected he wouldn’t be the nation’s first childless commander-in-chief.

James Madison, the nation’s fourth president and the recognized “father” of the US Constitution, was the first. Even though Madison’s wife, Dolley Payne Todd, was 17 years younger than him, the couple did not have any children together.

James Polk, the nation’s 11th president and prosecutor of the Mexican-American War, which ultimately brought New Mexico and much of the American West into the US fold, was the nation’s second childless chief executive.
It is a bit refreshing to see this discussion center around a man; such accusations often resound more with voters against female candidates. Yet this is the US, so the latter are scarce anyway. While we are not discussing many childless by choice presidents or candidates, this is conservative America, and acceptance of such things is hard enough for our Secretary of State, letalone our President.

After all, even this male candidate is being made to answer, even apologize, for his failure to adopt.

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1 comment:

fred said...

I ignore this. Thanks for the tip