First of all, here’s the article in question: http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20070224/ap_on_el_pr/romney_polygamy
While Mitt Romney condemns polygamy and its prior practice by his Mormon church, the Republican presidential candidate’s great-grandfather had five wives and at least one of his great-great grandfathers had 12.
Polygamy was not just a historical footnote, but a prominent element in the family tree of the former Massachusetts governor now seeking to become the first Mormon president.
While the article makes it clear that Mitt Romney, a 2008 Presidential hopeful, endorses or condones polygamy, a tradition largely associated with those of his Mormon religion, it goes on to expose his family history in polygamy. That’s where NewsBusters is taking offense to the AP article.
Since Romney isn’t a polygamist himself, and he’s disavowed the practice, this information doesn’t seem like it would warrant an article. The article doesn’t explore the significance that Romney’s faith would have on the way he would handle Mormon-related issues or how his family history could influence his interaction with American polygamists, many of whom are self-proclaimed “Mormons”; it just gossips and raises doubt, tabloid-style, about his qualifications. That last paragraph is also a bit tricky. Notice that it says polygamy “became less a part” of the Romney family life, not that Romney’s grandfather abruptly stopped the tradition, by marrying one woman, who distanced the Romneys even further from polygamy by not having plural marriage in her background.
While I may agree that this story about Romney’s family might not have anything to do with him running for President, it’s certainly not outside of the realm of the type of things that are interesting for people to read as news. When a candidate runs for office, its expected that any questionable family history issues will be brought into the spotlight.