Nightly News | May 10, 2012
>> before we get into this neck item, ask yourself if you remember everything you did in high school , and more important, would you be willing to defend everything you did in high school ? that's what mitt romney was facing today, and spent much of the day trying to explain and apologize. our chief white house correspondent political director chuck todd with us tonight from the d.c. newsroom with that part of the story from the trail today. chuck, good evening.
>> good evening, brian. what is fair game in presidential politics ? today, mitt romney learned thal running for president means every aspect of your life is open to inspection, including high school days nearly 50 years ago. campaigning today, mitt romney found himself having to respond to a washington post story posted online this morning about his high school years at the prestigious cranbrook school outside of detroit. this article quotes some of romney 's classmates describing his history of high school branchs including an incident from 1965 when he was a senior where he and a group of boys accosted a boy with bleach blond hair over one eye, tackled him and pinned him to the ground, and romney repeatedly clipped his hair. one of his classmates confirmed the story saying the boys grew into a distinguished group of men and we look back on it now and it's a back mark on the character.
>> is the incident troubling to you?
>> governor romney doesn't remember that incident at all.
>> romney responded to the allegations on several interviews on fox. he denied the specific charges were issued a blanket apologize.
>> i had no this idea might have been gay, and as the article points out, i participated in a lot of hijinx and pranks in high school , and some may have gone too far, and for that i apologize.
>> later on tv.
>> i don't rarm the incident myself, but i have seen the reports and i'm not going to argue with that. there's no question that i did some stupid things when i was in high school .
>> i think it's going to be very difficult to criticize mitt romney for what he did when he was 18 years old. he's had a whole life to grow up and growing up is growing out of these irresponsible things.
>> in 2007 , then candidate obama faced supercriticism.
>> i kept playing basketball, attended classes sparingly, drank beer heavily, and tried drugs enthusiastically.
>> as you know, brian, the romney campaign has been in damage control mode, and late this afternoon, they have been sending out statements from other high school statements of mitt romney serving as character witnesses saying he was not a mean guy. this is not his character.
>> chuck todd in d.c., thanks.