Romney Hearts Vacation Mandate?

<a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/gageskidmore/6148668785/sizes/m/in/photostream/">Gage Skidmore</a>/Flickr

For indispensable reporting on the coronavirus crisis and more, subscribe to Mother Jones' newsletters.

Mitt Romney took a break from his vacation in New Hampshire on Friday to hold a presser in response to the latest jobs report. A reporter asked the Republican candidate about whether his vacation was “somewhat hypocritical” given the bad economic news and his own previous criticism of President Obama’s vacations.

Romeny responded that he’s “delighted to be able to take a vacation” with his family. He continued:

I think all Americans appreciate the memories that they have with their children and their grandchildren. I hope that more Americans are able to take vacations. And if I’m president of the United States, I’m going to work very hard to make sure we have good jobs for all Americans who want good jobs. And part of a good job is the capacity to take a vacation now and then with their loved ones.

It’s worth pointing out, however, that the United States is the only advanced country with no national policy guaranteeing paid vacation time. Here’s a graph from the European Trade Union Institute’s recent paper on the “No-vacation Nation USA,” via The Atlantic:

ETUI-REHS

ETUI-REHS 

I’m sure that Romney didn’t intend for his remarks to be interpreted as a policy stance. Rather, it was meant as an aspirational goal—as in, “Hopefully some day more Americans have jobs that actually give them vacation time.” But it’s worth pointing out that we could guarantee more Americans can take vacations by putting policies in place that allow that.  

THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

THE BIG PICTURE

You expect the big picture, and it's our job at Mother Jones to give it to you. And right now, so many of the troubles we face are the making not of a virus, but of the quest for profit, political or economic (and not just from the man in the White House who could have offered leadership and comfort but instead gave us bleach).

In "News Is Just Like Waste Management," we unpack what the coronavirus crisis has meant for journalism, including Mother Jones’, and how we can rise to the challenge. If you're able to, this is a critical moment to support our nonprofit journalism with a donation: We've scoured our budget and made the cuts we can without impairing our mission, and we hope to raise $400,000 from our community of online readers to help keep our big reporting projects going because this extraordinary pandemic-plus-election year is no time to pull back.

We Recommend

Latest

Sign up for our newsletters

Subscribe and we'll send Mother Jones straight to your inbox.

Get our award-winning magazine

Save big on a full year of investigations, ideas, and insights.

Subscribe

Support our journalism

Help Mother Jones' reporters dig deep with a tax-deductible donation.

Donate

We have a new comment system! We are now using Coral, from Vox Media, for comments on all new articles. We'd love your feedback.