GOP Hopefuls: Did Their Wives Make Them Run?13:10
Download

Play
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, accompanied by his wife Ann, speaks during a caucus day rally at the Temple for Performing Arts, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP)
Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, accompanied by his wife Ann, speaks during a caucus day rally at the Temple for Performing Arts, in Des Moines, Iowa. (AP)

What motivated each GOP hopeful to run? Some are pointing to their wives.

Newt Gingrich says it was his wife's "stubbornness." Callista Gingrich told the Christian Broadcasting Network “There were several critical moments where I said to Newt, ‘If we can just get to the debates, if we can just get to September.'"

Mitt Romney, who ran in 2008, says his wife Ann convinced him to run this time.

But Boston Globe reporter Glen Johnson said that Mitt Romney's wife did not necessarily play as big a role as he says.

"If she made him do it maybe she finally pushed him into the pool, but he surely did everything to get ready for it for the last few years...Virtually since he conceded the race in 2008 to John McCain, he's been laying the foundation to run a second time," he told Here & Now's Robin Young.

Romney's Father, His North Star

Johnson says that it is more likely that his late father is the one that encouraged him to run.

"You can not overstate the importance of George Romney in Mitt Romney's life. He's been a real north star for him through his career," Johnson said.

"Mitt Romney at this point in his career has achieved everything his father has achieved, he's been a success in business, he's been a governor of a state, he's also had the same failure: running for president and losing... He wants to do what his father tried to do and was unsuccessful at doing and that is winning the presidency," he said.

The Role Of Family In The Presidential Race

Family members have been critical in presidential campaigns and this campaign is no different. Ann Romney has showcased her husband's personal side, talking about his silly side and how he supported her through her illness.

Callista Gingrich is seen by her husband's side a lot; and Rick Perry likes to to tell voters about his courtship with his wife — they were high school sweethearts.

Guests:

  • Glen Johnson, reporter for the Boston Globe
  • Holly Bailey, Yahoo! News senior political reporter

This segment aired on January 3, 2012.

Support the news

+Join the discussion
TwitterfacebookEmail

Support the news