I can’t believe this hasn’t been made a topic yet (wait, yes I can), but has anyone noticed John Kerry’s absolute refusal to open his divorce records? His campaign calls it smear tactics and the like, and while I agree with that, I find it amusing that they haven’t called what happened to Jack Ryan a smear. Or is it because they think that he obviously did something bad that they could throw gas on the fire. Any comments?
What possible relevance are Mr. Kerry’s divorce records?
Does it somehow balance the equation if an injustice done to Mr. Ryan is done to Mr. Kerry as well?
Nonsense. Plenty of reason to vote against Mr. Kerry without involving divorce records. Leave 'em be.
John Kerry had nothing to do with the unsealing of Jack Ryan’s divorce papers, nor has he made any comment about them that I know of. A judge made a decision. Kerry has no obligation to publicly second guess a judge in a case which has nothing to do with him, or with his campaign. If Kerry had demanded Ryan’s records be opened, or if he had made any hay out Ryan being exposed as an abusive pervert you might have a point, but since he didn’t, you don’t.
I admit, I haven’t been paying attention to the Jack Ryan thing, as I figure a politician’s sex life is his own business (hint hint, Mr. Starr)…
…but when did the Kerry campaign say boo about the Ryan’s divorce? AFAIK, the whole stink came up because Jack’s wife, Jeri, made a big stink about his kinky sex habits, and Jack ended up getting dumped by his fellow Republicans.
My point was that they didn’t say it was a smear on Ryan. They ARE saying it would be a smear on Kerry. As vehement as he is being, most people come to two conclusions. Either he is hiding something, or just wants to be secretive. If everything in your past comes out during an election (think Bush’s smoking of pot, or not going for drill, or Clinton’s draft dodging), then why be so against opening them?
I had a nice talk yesterday with a friend who’s plugged into Illinois politics. He said the reason Ryan’s support evaporated as soon as the records were unsealed was because Ryan had lied to the Illinois Republican bigwigs that the divorce records had nothing embarassing in them. It’s my friend’s opinion that had Ryan revealed the contents of the records to the party bigwigs in advance, and then gone forward with the race, the bigwigs would have come to his support.
On the other hand, Kerry has been in what, six elections and a whole bunch of primary contests? Most of the possible dirt in his private life has probably been uncovered already.
Cite for Kerry or campaign officials saying that the release of the records would be a “smear”?
And I still don’t understand why you would expect them to make a statement on Jack Ryan’s divorce records. Jack was running for Senate; Kerry is running for President. They weren’t running against each other. Their campaigns had nothing to do with each other. Democrats never attempted to smear Ryan with his records; in fact, Barack Obama, Ryan’s opponent, made a point to not even comment on the records. A Presidential campaign can’t be expected to issue a statement on every single thing that happens in the world of politics, especially when the something occurs in a race that the Presidential candidate isn’t even involved in.
Got a link so we can judge for ourselves what anybody has said? Or is this the old smear-by-implication trick that worked so well on Clinton - “we don’t have the evidence, so he must be hiding something nasty”?
Ryan’s private life is none of my business, or yours, and neither was Clinton’s, and neither is Kerry’s.
My GF, who lives in Illinois, works in the criminal justice field, and has personal knowledge of the state divorce system (yes, take that as you will), commented that the vast majority of divorce proceedings in IL are public information. Even the few that are sealed, she said, can easily be unsealed by judicial challenge.
On the other hand, the laws in MA may be very different (anyone with knowledge of their court system know?) It could be the case that such records would remain closed without a Darn Good Reason for them to be opened, making the Kerry-Ryan comparisons moot.
Here is a link to an editorial that says roughly halfway down
Granted, this isn’t a direct quote from a named source, but it is all I have found so far.
Off the OP, but
I agree that their past private lives, to a certain degree, are none of my business. Clinton banging an intern in the oval office is quite egregious, and while none of my business per se, I don’t want someone running my country to not have any sense of decency. Raping people in the past would make me not want to vote for them. If his private life is none of your business, then you wouldn’t mind a president who smokes crack, similar to the mayor of D.C.?
Jack Ryan refused to open his divorce records. He never said he would open them, and he never did. The court opened them. So how does this translate to an obligation for Kerry to voluntarily open his?
Kerry doesn’t have to, however, nobody at the Chicago Tribune is suing for access to them as they were in the Jack Ryan case (nobody in Mass is either, for that matter.) The Illinois Leader is suing for them. I just find it interesting that this hunt for heads by the liberals is deemed excessively negative when directed back at them. How many people here remember Newt Gingrich? Private lives being private indeed.
It would be pretty ridiculous if Kerry started commenting on Ryan, wouldn’t it? What would the point of that be? Especially since it sounds like Ryan’s former opponent will be speaking at Kerry’s nominating convention next month.
On THIS site, anyway, I’ve seen any number of people comment that what happened to Ryan was unfair and not the public’s business.
Four successful elections to the Senate, some primaries on various levels, Gore considered nominating him as VP in 2000… I think you’re right.
Does the word “kneejerk” mean anything to you?
Kerry wasn’t even running against Ryan - how are you making the presidential race equivalent to a US Senate race, that isn’t even in either of the presidential candidates home states? I can see if they were from the same state or something, there’d be a reason to complain about the Kerry camp’s actions, but that’s not the case.
BTW, Barack Obama (the Democrat candidate for the same US Senate seat) has stated in interviews that he thinks it’s a shame what happened to Ryan and that campaigns should be about the issues.
Ryan didn’t exactly say “Oh, go ahead and look at my records” either, you know. He fought it for quite a while, he told the media that the reason they were sealed had to do with his son’s privacy (even telling one reporter whose son has the same unnamed developmental problem that it was about that problem), and right before they were to be released, he blatantly lied to the leader and two of the top members of the IL Republican Party about what the records contained. kunilou’s friend’s assessment of what took Ryan down is almost certainly correct - the people who were lied to by Ryan were furious and felt like they were tricked by that into making statements about how the records wouldn’t hurt his image at all, and the party withdrew its support within a day.
Blair Hull - the previously front-running candidate for the Democrats - had a similar reaction when his divorce records were unsealed, showing his ex-wife had accused him of hitting her and threatening her, and that she’d filed for an order of protection against him. It’s happening on both sides - both parties scream foul when stuff like this happens. Don’t blame Kerry’s people for doing what they’re practically expected to do.
(Interesting side note: If Hull and Ryan had stayed in the race, we could have had to choose between two millionaires with zero political experience who traumatized their wives in one way or another. I can see the headlines now - wife-beater versus pervert…)
Why do you equate the Chicago Tribune with “liberals?”
Hah, I missed that - yeah, that’s far from accurate. The Chicago Tribune is the conservative/Republican-leaning daily newspaper in this city. The Chicago Sun-Times leans more liberal/Democrat.
Kerry supporter here. Liberal. Live in Illinois. Obama supporter.
On the record in past threads that I did not think that the divorce records were fair game, and that neither his sexual interests nor his asshatness as a husband were relevant to Ryan’s candidacy. I had enough to dislike already.
You must also remember that Ryan is the one who put cameramen on Obabma 24-7 to try to find some dirt and that Obama neither sued for the records to be opened or commented on them once opened other than to say that they distract from debate abpout the issues that matter. And that the conservatives are the ones who say that all this private stuff is our business (how much did the Starr report cost again?)
I do not care if Ryan was an asshole husband or if he wanted Jeri to give him a bj in front of a crowd. I do not care if Clinton got one in his office. Or even if he lied about getting a blowjob. I do care about being lied to about the basis of going to a war in which thousands are dieing.
Do you believe that there is evidence of illegal activity in Kerry’s divorce records? You are barking up a tree that doesn’t exist and wouldn’t make a sound if it fell in forest whether anyone was there or not.
Actually, this particular issue has been addressed by any number of people, almost all of whom have denounced it. Who are these liberals that you speak of?
And Gingrich certainly deserved to have his personal life left alone. However, when he sanctimoniously banged (heh) away at Clinton for his indiscretions, and was fucking around while doing so, then he left himself wide open to the charges levelled against him.