An incident involving the family dog has come back to bite Mitt Romney — nearly 30 human years later.
Romney, faced with a car packed with his wife, five sons, and luggage, chose to strap the family’s Irish setter on the roof in a dog crate for a 12-hour ride to Canada.
The 1983 incident, first reported by the Boston Globe in 2007, has become fodder for late-night comedians, cartoonists, columnists — and even has been used by Romney’s Republican opponents in the presidential race, The Washington Post
In response to a question about Romney criticism of a political ad supporting Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator’s aide John Brabender said: “Quite frankly, I’m not sure I’m going to listen to the value judgment of a guy who strapped his dog to the top of the roof of his car and went hurling down the highway.”
Late-night host David Letterman has repeatedly mentioned the incident and New York Times columnist Gail Collins seems unable to write about Romney without working it in, the Post reported.
There are also “Dogs Aren’t Luggage” shirts and Facebook groups. One group — Dogs Against Romney — went so far to stage a protest outside the Westminster dog show last month.
“It really says this guy is not like us and is mean,” Scott Crider, an Alabama marketer who founded Dogs Against Romney, told the Post.
A Romney adviser said that the dog story is “a pure negative” but that the campaign does not see it as overly damaging.
“For crying out loud, with 8.3 percent unemployment, if the dog defeats you, you deserve to be defeated,” the adviser told the Post. “Come on. You’ve got to run a good campaign to overcome that. President Obama overcame Reverend Wright and Bill Ayres.”
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