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elbanditoroso's avatar

Will Santorum's daughter forever feel guilty? He cited her health as one of the reasons he dropped out today.

Asked by elbanditoroso (30464points) April 10th, 2012

Let’s be clear – he wasn’t going to win anyway. But in citing his daughter’s health as one of the reasons for bailing out of the republican nomination race, is Santorum creatign future problems for the daughter?

I feel for the kid – she has a pretty serious syndrome/disease and just got out of the hospital. Will she feel even worse because her daddy gave up the race, and mentioned (although didn’t blame) her as the one of the reasons?

One hopes that Rick can spend lots of time with family now.

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30 Answers

jca's avatar

He’s saying that to save face.

marinelife's avatar

She’s three. She won’t feel guilty.

tom_g's avatar

Like @jca said, he’s just saying that because it sounds nice. But if she was to buy into it, maybe she’ll someday learn to love the fact she had a small part in saving the U.S. from crazy.

bkcunningham's avatar

You do realize she wasn’t expected to live 24 hours when she was born? She has Trisomy 18. She was just released from a hospital in Virginia where she had been admitted for an illness related to her syndrome. Most people with Edwards Syndrome don’t live the first week of life, some live into their teens but have very severe health complications from the disorder.

She is 3-years old.

“In ending his bid for the GOP 2012 nomination Santorum described his daughter as ‘a fighter and doing exceptionally well.’ But he added her illness ‘did cause us to think about our role as parents. This was a time for prayer and thought this past weekend. Just as it was when we decided to get in this race,’ he said.”

Rick Santorum bows out of 2012 presidential race –

SmashTheState's avatar

Could anything be more humiliating and shameful than having Santorum for a father?

SpatzieLover's avatar

He’s playing the blame game instead of just cleanily ending his bid. That speaks volumes to me as to the type of man he is.

wundayatta's avatar

Why would she feel guilty? It’s not as if she deprived the nation of anything important.

JLeslie's avatar

@bkcunningham But, if she lives into her teens, she will know her dad gave her as a reason for dropping out. For giving up his dream at the Presidency. She will either feel good her daddy loved her so much, or guilty, or know he needed or wanted a way to bow out.

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

No way to know.

jca's avatar

I’m not sure what her illness does to her physically and mentally but is she aware or knowledgeable about things of this magnitude?

ucme's avatar

Will? I thought his name was Prick…..Rick.

WestRiverrat's avatar

Hmmm…Obama’s kids are off limits, but it is acceptable to bring Republican candidate’s kids into the debate. Double standard?

JLeslie's avatar

@WestRiverrat I don’t know what you mean? Can you expand on your answer.

bkcunningham's avatar

@JLeslie and @jca, the child doesn’t have the mental capacity to understand. Children with Edwards have severe mental deficiency. You are right, @WestRiverrat. Sad.

JLeslie's avatar

@bkcunningham I see. Ok, thanks for explaining further.

bkcunningham's avatar

This is from ABC news’ medical reporting about the disorder that little Belle was born with. Have you seen photos or videos of her? She is beautiful. Simply beautiful.

Aethelflaed's avatar

If it was me, I’d be pissed that he ran in the first place, that it took him this long to get to “family and fatherhood is more important”. (And this from the family values candidate…)

Bellatrix's avatar

It would seem that he brought his children into the debate by citing her as a reason. When he did that he opened her up for inclusion in discussions unfortunately.

As to whether she will feel responsible, I doubt it. She is a baby. I also don’t think there is any shame in putting your family before your career, aspirations. Whether it was an excuse or genuine, I don’t know. I am not paying sufficient attention to the US political campaign or the candidates.

keobooks's avatar

I am not trying to insult anyone, but trisomy 18 is a very serious medical condition that greatly affects ones mental capacity. I don’t think any three year old at all would understand much about the dealings of running for presidential nominee. But I also don’t think most people with trisomy 18 would be able to understand much of anything at all.

This isn’t like Down Syndrome (trisomy 21) who can have an IQ in the 70s or 80s (mild – moderate mental retardation) People who have trisomy 18 have IQs in the 20 – 25 range (severe – profound range) She may never be able to speak a single word, let alone comprehend all that is going on.

Buttonstc's avatar

Obviously the child doesn’t have the capacity to understand all of this, so theres no harm done there.

And Santorum must be secretly relieved that he has a viable excuse for opting out of the upcoming Penna. primary so he doesn’t have to risk the possibility of a loss or poor showing in his home state, whether he wants to admit that to himself (or anybody else) or not.

Lets not forget that the voters of his home state wisely chose to return him to the private sector, opting for Casey instead. So, obviously being apprehensive is clearly warranted for him :)

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

This wins the internet, for me, on Santorum getting the hell out.

mazingerz88's avatar

Santorum is a pretentious pr*^%k for even citing his poor kid as one of the reasons for quitting. It would have been genuine if he quit when he was winning. He gives validity to the definition Savage gave his name.

JLeslie's avatar

I thought about this more. If Santorum was the front runner by a long shot, do you think he would have dropped out? Do you think the American people supporting him would have been ok with him dropping out? I always say when a person wants to be President, is President, the country is first, not his family. I agreed with McCain there. I thought that back during the Bush Gore run, when I saw a reporter ask Gore if his family came first. If there was a tragedy in his family, where would his attention go. Bush was running on family values, so this sort of, in my opinion, bullshit question, came up during the campaign. Gore hesitated, and then said something along the lines of his family is the most important thing in his life. Really? Your family is more important than the population of the United States during those 4 years? If a President has to choose, if there is a crisis for us as a nation, I think the nation should be the most important, more important than whatever is going on in the family of the President. Just my opinion. Soldiers every day sacrfice family relationships and being at home to fight for us on battlefields, I hope our Commander in Cheif feels the same committment.

wundayatta's avatar

Ah, see, but it’s trickier than that, @JLeslie. I want to know if my President is human. I want to know how important his family is, because if it isn’t important, then he doesn’t care about women’s issues and family issues and relationship issues. He may not even care about certain moral issues. It’s all politics and power to him. I don’t like that.

The fact that Santorum is spending time with his daughter (and the week he spent with her before the announcement, during the heat of the campaign matters more than any time from here on out), tells me he really is concerned about his family. That humanizes him to some extent, even though I know he doesn’t really care about women—at least, not as independent beings.

JLeslie's avatar

@wundayatta I agree with your first paragraph. It is not that I want a president who does not care about family. It’s like that horrible question if you can only save one of your children, or if you can only save your wife or your new born daughter, horrible questions like that. Questions honestly I think should never be asked.

Do you think Santorum would have dropped out if he were ahead? I he truly was the Republican hopeful to beat Obama? Each part of the equation counts. If God forbid one of Obama’s daughters was deathly ill (God forbid, spit three times, and whatever else we are supposed to do to ward of evil) and then war was declared on America, Obama would have to leave her side in my opinion for some amount of time to address America’s immediate emergency. If there was no crisis going on, Obama could sit vigil with his daughter for days, and reschedule his Presdiential schedule or miss an event.

You kind of contradict yourself in your last paragraph, I know I don’t need to point that out to you. A little story about my childhood: when I was young it used to really really bother me that my father raised me to never think I was limited because I was a girl. When I wanted to be a cheerleader, he said why not a football player. When I said I wanted to marry someone rich, he said you make your own riches. I never felt a profession was off limits to me because of my gender. But, he wanted my mom to have dinner ready for him when he got home, and was pissed, horrible to my mother when she suggested an easy meal once in a while because she was exhausted. It had to be a full blown dinner, a sandwich or salad one night was not good enough. He treated her all too often as someone who had to do whatever he wanted. If a boyfriend had treated me that way he would have thought it terrible. At the same time if she had had a powerful career he would have been fine with it, that is as long as his dinner was on the table. My point is, I saw it as hypocrisy. People can have all sorts of weird idiosyncrasies that are not predictable on the surface.

Pied_Pfeffer's avatar

The chance of Bella (Santorum’s daughter) ever being in a position to feel guilt about her father’s excuse for bowing out of the presidential race are slim to none. First, she she will only have been three when it happened. Second, she has a disorder that causes severe mental and physical developmental problems. If she lives to an age where she can be enrolled into some type of program or facility where she interacts with others, her fellow members will most likely have a similar mental capacity.

Even if she lives to an age when a person has the mental ability to grasp the concept of presidency, not only is it unlikely that she will be able to do so, but who in the world would bring up the topic? It’s hard enough to remember the presidential candidates, much less who ran in the primaries. It seems that this type of information dies rather quickly with the next generation.

bkcunningham's avatar

Why don’t you believe he cares about women, @wundayatta?

jca's avatar

@WestRiverrat: What I said, I did not say in an insulting manner. I did not mean it as an insult. @keobooks confirms what I suspected: that children with this syndrome have severe mental deficits. That was what I was referring to. The child would not know the difference.

wundayatta's avatar

@bkcunningham The kinds of policies he ran on for Senate were pretty anti-woman. He was against the morning after pill. Against a woman’s right to control her own body. There were some neanderthal education positions. Typical conservative asshole politics.

Most Catholics I know are pretty concerned about making the world a better place. They favor policies that help folks get up on their own two feet. He tends to favor anti-family policies that cut supports for women-headed households or daycare and a host of other women-supportive policies. He is really bad news and it’s a good thing he’s out of the race.

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