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Mitt Romney's Son

Signed 'Abortion' Clause

In Surrogate Birth Contract

9/21/2012 8:00 AM PDT BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

0920_tagg_romney_article
TMZ has learned Mitt Romney's son Tagg -- who had twins this year through a surrogate -- signed an agreement that gave the surrogate, as well as Tagg and his wife, the right to abort the fetuses in non-life threatening situations ... and Mitt Romney covered some of the expenses connected with the arrangement  ... and it may boil down to an incredibly stupid mistake.

The twin boys -- David Mitt and William Ryder -- were born on May 4, 2012.  We've learned Tagg and his wife Jen, along with the surrogate and her husband, signed a Gestational Carrier Agreement dated July 28, 2011.  Paragraph 13 of the agreement reads as follows:
   
"If in the opinion of the treating physician or her independent obstetrician there is potential physical harm to the surrogate, the decision to abort or not abort is to be made by the surrogate."

Translation:  Tagg and Jen gave the surrogate the right to abort the fetuses even if her life wasn't in danger.  All the surrogate has to show is "potential physical harm," which could be something like preeclampsia -- a type of high blood pressure that could damage the mother's liver, kidney or brain, but is not necessarily life-threatening.

Paragraph 13 goes on:

"In the event the child is determined to be physiologically, genetically or chromosomally abnormal, the decision to abort or not to abort is to be made by the intended parents.  In such a case the surrogate agrees to abort, or not to abort, in accordance with the intended parents' decision."

And there's another relevant provision in Paragraph 13:

"Any decision to abort because of potential harm to the child, or to reduce the number of fetuses, is to be made by the intended parents."

Translation:  Tagg and his wife, Jen, had the right to abort the fetuses if they felt they would not be healthy.

Sources connected with Mitt Romney tell TMZ, Mitt was involved in the surrogate arrangement because he paid some of the expenses connected with the agreement.  We do not know if Mitt Romney read the contract or knew the terms.

Mitt has said, "I'm in favor of abortion being legal in the case of rape and incest and the health and life of the mother."  Otherwise, Romney is against abortion.

Now for the stupid mistake.  We've learned Tagg chose the same surrogate in 2009, who gave birth to a boy.   Attorney Bill Handel -- a nationally-known expert in surrogacy law who put the deal together between Tagg and the surrogate -- tells TMZ when the 2009 contract was drafted there was no Paragraph 13 providing for abortion because Tagg and his wife didn't want it.

Handel says in 2011, when the second contract was being drafted, everyone involved "just forgot" to remove Paragraph 13.  Handel says, "No one noticed.  What can I say?"

622 COMMENTS

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Previous 15 Comments | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27
391.

FERNANDO    

"Oh what a tangled web we weave..."

As to the argument about this being "a mistake"— Get real! The notion of a Harvard lawyer missing a clause in a contract that has to do with a pregnancy and birth is just RIDICOULOUS!

697 days ago
392.

txcn    

An incredibly stupid mistake is this ,what is it, hatchet job,that's supposed to be a story.

697 days ago
393.

PM2901    

A convenient mistake. Hypocrites!

697 days ago
394.

UFO51    

The only lying media is Faux News! And it if very sad people believe them! This is the true Romney, evil, vile and corrupt!

697 days ago
395.

Jay    

The reason this is a real issue actually has nothing to do with the so-called abortion clauses in the contract, but with the fact that they were doing a gestational surrogacy in the first place. Gestational surroagcy would be illegal if the personhood amendment Romney supports we're ever passed into law. That's where the real hypocrisy lies.

697 days ago
396.

Cassidy Johnson    

Doesn't really matter WHAT Tagg and his wife's stance is on abortion...it's up to the surrogate mother. HER body, HER choice, regardless of who she's gestating for.
Honestly though, this story is null and void. Obviously the babies were born and are healthy, so there's really no damn controversy.

697 days ago
397.

megarockradio.net    

The only reason it matters is because Romney is 'anti-abortion' yet entered into a contract permitting abortion. If a child has a 'defect' isn't that God's will and Romney should just accept it?

It wouldn't be a story if someone wasn't a lying sack of doggie poop.

696 days ago
398.

Andy    

First: WTF!
Really TMZ, what do Romney's children have to do with his political leanings.

Second: "potential physical harm," which could be something like preeclampsia -- a type of high blood pressure that could damage the mother's liver, kidney or brain, but is not necessarily life-threatening...in what planet is something that damages the liver, kidney or brain considered a minor thing...
Third: What are you even trying to prove with this article? I don't get it.

I want Obama to win, but seriously stick with celebrity news.

695 days ago
399.

Mere    

You are making a big deal out of nothing. They weren't having surrogate so they could abort a baby, they had it so that they could love one.
It really is silly how far democrats will go to make the Romneys look bad- especially when there is nothing there.

693 days ago
400.

RetMilitary    

Like Father, Like Son!
Flip/Flop!! or 47%:)

691 days ago
401.

Mathglot    

The claim that they "forgot" to remove a paragraph from the contract is not believable.

Gestational surrogacy is clearly a very, very serious relationship between parties and calls for a carefully written contract specifying all the details to protect the interests of everyone involved.

Here is a sample of such a contract, it's long and involved. I cannot imagine either party signing their name to something like this without a lawyer going over the contract very carefully. So I call bull**** on that point.

Having said that, I think the upshot of all this is minimal. The sins (if any, and I don't see any here) of the son should not be visited upon the father, who is very unlikely to have read the contract. Democrats won't change their mind because of this, and very few Republicans will, either. It's a minor embarrassment for a campaign which has seen some major flubs; at worst it's an indication of hypocrisy involving the right to abortion, but that flip-flop is a matter of public record and has been discounted in the polling results already.

Sample here: http://www.allaboutsurrogacy.com/sample_contracts/GScontract2.htm

689 days ago
402.

Mathglot    

The claim that they "forgot" to remove a paragraph from the contract is not believable.

Gestational surrogacy is clearly a very, very serious relationship between parties and calls for a carefully written contract specifying all the details to protect the interests of everyone involved.

Here is a sample of such a contract, it's long and involved. I cannot imagine either party signing their name to something like this without a lawyer going over the contract very carefully. So I call bull**** on that point.

Having said that, I think the upshot of all this is minimal. The sins (if any, and I don't see any here) of the son should not be visited upon the father, who is very unlikely to have read the contract. Democrats won't change their mind because of this, and very few Republicans will, either. It's a minor embarrassment for a campaign which has seen some major flubs; at worst it's an indication of hypocrisy involving the right to abortion, but that flip-flop is a matter of public record and has been discounted in the polling results already.

689 days ago
403.

Crystal    

Until YOU have to use someone else or medical help to have the amazingly, wonderful blessing of a child; then keep your big mouth shut!!! Until you go through this yourself you have no right to judge. They are obviously PRO LIFE!!! They used a surrogate!!! This is never taken lightly!!! Never. YOU HAVE TO TAKE THEIR BELIEFS INTO CONSIDERATION, THEY ARE ALLOWING YOU THE GIFT OF CHILDREN THROUGH THEIR BODY! Grow a brain, oh wait that's controversial too. Give me a break. Find a smut story to show like usual, not a sweet baby story that is selfless and amazing; that's just not your style TMZ.

683 days ago
404.

cissy4454    

well well women take notice this is only for the elite.You want an abortion you better head to Mexico or get out a hanger cause you won't have this privilege.

670 days ago
Previous 15 Comments | 21 | 22 | 23 | 24 | 25 | 26 | 27

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