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Dec. 29 2009 - 12:26 pm | 3,707 views | 3 recommendations | 20 comments

Marriage Warrior Karl Rove Gets a Divorce

Karl Rove, the architect behind using gay marriage as a wedge issue to drive the Christian right to the polls, has just gotten a divorce in Texas, ending his 24-year marriage.

No one should really be surprised by the hypocrisy, especially because Rove himself is apparently not devoutly Christian, he simply specialized in playing to those who were. Nor is it surprising that for all of gay marriage opponents’ talk of how it will destroy “traditional” marriage, Rove didn’t seem to have much respect for families to begin with. A former Rove staffer told The New Republic about Rove’s tactic of painting one political opponent as a pedophile:

“It was our standard practice to use the University of Alabama Law School to disseminate whisper-campaign information,” the staffer went on. “That was a major device we used for the transmission of this stuff. The students at the law school are from all over the state, and that’s one of the ways that Karl got the information out—he knew the law students would take it back to their home towns and it would get out.” This would create the impression that the lie was in fact common knowledge across the state. “What Rove does,” says Joe Perkins, “is try to make something so bad for a family that the candidate will not subject the family to the hardship. Mark is not your typical Alabama macho, beer-drinkin’, tobacco-chewin’, pickup-drivin’ kind of guy. He is a small, well-groomed, well-educated family man, and what they tried to do was make him look like a homosexual pedophile. That was really, really hard to take.”

As Salon’s Glenn Greenwald pointed out today on Twitter, Rove was happy to take advantage of Texas’s “loose, un-Christian no-fault divorce law” despite having railed against gay marriage precisely because it is not traditional or Christian.

Look, Karl Rove, when your colleague Dick Cheney is the enlightened one on a particular issue, you know you’re more than a little ass-backward.


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  1. collapse expand

    I’d just like to say, for the record, i had nothing to do with this divorce.

  2. collapse expand

    huh? Hypocrisy? Unless you find a quote of Rove lambasting divorce, you’re going to have to spell out the ‘hypocrisy’ charge.

  3. collapse expand

    …perhaps it’s time to ban divorce in order to save marriage.

    Onward,
    Joe Mustich, Justice of the Peace,
    Washington, Connecticut, USA.

  4. collapse expand

    Definitely hypocrisy. The whole argument for keeping the institution of marriage strong was based on Christian principles. The includes defining marriage according to the Bible’s definition and not that of society.

    If you are going the define marriage by the Bible, you have to also define reason’s for divorce, according to the Bible. The Bible gives one out and that is ADULTERY. Rove’s Liberal lifestyle includes now 2 marriages and 2 divorces. That’s hardly the “Defense of Marriage” lifestyle that I think “Keeps the family institution strong”

    As I said… HYPOCRISY”

  5. collapse expand

    It is hard to call Rove a hypocrite. He’s a wholly political creature, and thus, at least in the sphere of politics, basically unprincipled. (If he were a politically or morally principled person, he wouldn’t have been half as successful.) Hypocrisy is saying you believe in something while doing the opposite, but I haven’t seen much evidence that Rove personally cares much about gay marriage, or marriage in general as a moral issue.

    Rove’s positions on issues such as gay marriage may or may not have some connection to his personal beliefs. But to him such issues are mainly just means to the end of advancing partisan interests and goals. That’s depressing, but not hypocrisy.

    • collapse expand

      What you are saying, in effect, is that Karl Rove is not a hypocrite, his disingenuous. He preaches something that he doesn’t really believe to bolster is political success.

      Either way, what he says he believes doesn’t line up with how he lives his life. There was a time in America when people, especially Conservatives, called you out for living that kind of life.

      In response to another comment. See in context »
  6. collapse expand

    Great perspective, John. But I do see his actions as hypocritical, even if we both agree that he doesn’t seem to believe the moral principles he’s made a career of manipulating.

  7. collapse expand

    It is always easiest to judge the lives of others as hypocritical.

  8. collapse expand

    I don’t know about hypocritical or not, but agree with the ‘depressing.’ Most everything Rovian I know is depressing. But this divorce news, just delivered to my husband, evoked a possibly widespread response: “… I really don’t care.”

  9. collapse expand

    Are we confident it was HE who filed the divorce, or could it be SHE has had it with HIM?

  10. collapse expand

    Well, playing by Karls’ rule book, his divorce must have caused from homosexuals, who’s desire to enter into monogamous relationships is the number one threat to “traditional marriage”. Or to look at it logically, marriage has been in trouble long before gay partnerships became a political issue. Conservatives, this is further egg on your face.

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