MEDIA QUOTED CRITICISM OF PELOSI FOR WEARING HEADSCARF IN MIDDLE EAST WITHOUT NOTING THAT RICE, LAURA BUSH HAVE ALSO DONE SO
News reports in the Associated Press and the New York Post, and an editorial in Investor’s Business Daily, quoted Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney criticizing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) by saying that “being seen in a head scarf and so forth is sending the wrong signal to the people of Syria and to the people of the Middle East,” without noting that Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and first lady Laura Bush have both done the same when visiting the Middle East.
An April 5 article in the New York Post asserted, “From the campaign trail in Iowa, GOP presidential hopeful Mitt Romney slammed Pelosi’s diplomatic excursion,” before offering Romney’s quote:
“I just don’t know what got into her head, to be completely honest with you,” he said.
“Her going to a state which is, without question, a sponsor of terror, and having her picture taken with Assad and being seen in a head scarf and so forth is sending the wrong signal to the people of Syria and to the people of the Middle East.”
An April 4 AP report similarly noted Romney’s criticism without offering any context. Neither that report nor the Post article made it clear in the text that Pelosi wore the scarf during a visit to the tomb of John the Baptist inside the Umayyad mosque in Damascus and not in her meeting with Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad. Romney’s quote could be read to suggest that Pelosi wore the scarf during that meeting. A photo accompanying the Post article shows clearly that Pelosi’s head was not covered when she met with Assad.