MOUNT VERNON, Ohio (Reuters) - Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney will stop telling the story of a former U.S. Navy SEAL killed in Libya after the man’s mother complained his death was being politicized.
Romney on the campaign trail on Tuesday began telling the story of Glen Doherty, who he met at a Christmas party a few years ago and learned last week that he had been killed in the assault on a U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi, Libya, on September 11.
“Governor Romney was inspired by the memory of meeting Glen Doherty and shared his story and that memory, but we respect the wishes of Mrs. Doherty,” the Romney campaign said in a statement on Wednesday.
Doherty’s mother complained about Romney, who faces President Barack Obama on November 6, using the story of her son’s death.
“I don’t trust Romney. He shouldn’t make my son’s death part of his political agenda. It’s wrong to use these brave young men, who wanted freedom for all, to degrade Obama,” Barbara Doherty told 7News in Boston.
Romney had said in Iowa that Glen Doherty and a second former SEAL providing security in Libya did not run from the attack, but ran toward it, and used the story as a metaphor for what he said was the need for Republicans to take over the White House from Obama in the election.
“They didn’t hunker down where they were in safety. They rushed there to go help. This is the American way. We go where there’s trouble. We go where we’re needed. And right now we’re needed. Right now the American people need us,” Romney had said.
A Romney campaign official said Romney would stop telling the story. He told it twice on Tuesday and once on Wednesday.
Editing by Will Dunham