Political Animal


May 01, 2012 3:55 PM Ric Grenell Fired, or Maybe “Self-Deported”

By Ed Kilgore

WaPo’s neocon blogger, Jennifer Rubin, is very disappointed in her hero Mitt Romney. After having defended Romney’s hiring of openly gay foreign policy spokesman Ric Grenell and suggested Mitt was too brave and honorable to bend to bigoted social conservative criticism, she’s now having to report that Grenell is gone, apparently because Team Romney wouldn’t let him do his job:

According to sources familiar with the situation, Grenell decided to resign after being kept under wraps during a time when national security issues, including the president’s ad concerning Osama bin Laden, had emerged front and center in the campaign.
Pieces in two conservative publications, the National Review and Daily Caller, reflected the uproar by some social conservatives over the appointment….
The ongoing pressure from social conservatives over his appointment and the reluctance of the Romney campaign to send Grenell out as a spokesman while controversy swirled left Grenell essentially with no job.

Rubin later did an update indicating that the Romney campaign had slightly redeemed itself:

The Romney camp has now responded via campaign manager Matt Rhoades: “We are disappointed that Ric decided to resign from the campaign for his own personal reasons. We wanted him to stay because he had superior qualifications for the position he was hired to fill.” That is a perhaps too subtle retort to those calling for Grenell’s head, that he was not hired to advise on gay issues but on foreign policy matters.

Whatever. It doesn’t much matter if Grenell was fired or was made so uncomfortable that he decided to “self-deport.” It’s one less thing Rick Santorum will have to ask Romney for in the meeting they are due to have on Friday.

Ed Kilgore is a contributing writer to the Washington Monthly. He is managing editor for The Democratic Strategist and a senior fellow at the Progressive Policy Institute. Find him on Twitter: @ed_kilgore.


  • boatboy_srq on May 01, 2012 4:29 PM:

    And you know that GOProud is going to say this had nothing to do with Grennel's preferences, or the whinging of the fundies - it was a policy difference and a personal decision.

  • Eeyore on May 01, 2012 4:40 PM:

    He can't use the line "I wanted to spend more time with my family", because Teh Gays don't have REAL families.

    I guess he wanted to "Pursue opportunities in the Private Sector"

  • Hedda Peraz on May 01, 2012 4:52 PM:

    Hey, he HAD to go- the "Soviets" (ones from "Czechoslovakia") were about to spring a Honey Trap on the queer bastard!

  • rk21 on May 01, 2012 5:05 PM:

    How sad! The woman hating gay guy had to leave because of the gay hating religious guys.

  • JEA on May 01, 2012 5:27 PM:

    Pundits are still trying to convince us that Romney is somehow tacking to the center for the general election, even as he still has to fend off attacks from social conservatives.

  • Kathryn on May 01, 2012 6:52 PM:

    Yeah Jennifer, brave and honorable are just the words for W. Mitt Romney. The campaign remarks were garbage and how any self respecting LGBT person could support the Republican Party is more than a mystery.

  • MelanieN on May 01, 2012 10:38 PM:

    This comes just during the period when Romney is trying to convince us that he is tough and a strong leader (compared to Obama, who really DID display toughness and strong leadership, not to mention political courage, a year ago today). And it turns out that Romney is completely lacking in toughness and leadership and (above all) political courage. He can't even stand up to the right wing of his own party! His willingness to hire and work with gay people (which to give him credit he seems to really believe in) collapses in yet another craven cave-in to the loonies in his party.