Huffpost Politics

Mitt Romney, Joe Biden Follow Rich Tradition Of Political Apologies

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WASHINGTON — It's a sorry list. This week's apologies from Mitt Romney and Joe Biden are just the latest in a colorful history of politicians regretting personal lapses large and small. A few recent notables:

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MITT ROMNEY: The presumptive Republican nominee regretted a 1965 boarding school incident – he reportedly held down a classmate and cut his longish, bleached hair – while saying he doesn't remember it: "I participated in a lot of hijinks and pranks during high school and some may have gone too far. And for that I apologize."

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JOE BIDEN: The vice president is sorry for speaking out of turn in support of gay marriage. Biden upstaged President Barack Obama and upset White House planning – not cool for the No. 2. He offered Obama his mea culpa privately, according to aides.

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NEWT GINGRICH: His presidential bid just starting, Gingrich miffed fellow Republicans by calling Rep. Paul Ryan's Medicare proposal "right-wing social engineering." He soon regretted it: "I made a mistake and I called Paul Ryan today, who's a very close personal friend, and I said that."

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ANTHONY WEINER: He eventually resigned. But first the New York congressman tried getting by with just an apology for sending photos of his underwear-clad crotch to a young woman via Twitter: "My wife is a remarkable woman. She's not responsible for any of this. I apologize to her very deeply."

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JOHN EDWARDS: The former Democratic presidential candidate regretted spending two years denying that he'd fathered a daughter with his mistress: "It was wrong for me ever to deny she was my daughter and hopefully one day, when she understands, she will forgive me. ... I am truly sorry."

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ROD BLAGOJEVICH: Facing sentencing for corruption, the former Illinois governor turned tearful: "I caused it all. I'm not blaming anybody. I was the governor, and I should have known better and I am just so incredibly sorry." The judge gave him 14 years.

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ELIOT SPITZER: The New York governor resigned amid reports he was a regular client of high-priced call girls: "The remorse I feel will always be with me."

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BILL CLINTON: After at first denying his sexual dalliance with White House intern Monica Lewinsky, the president issued a string of apologies: "I'm having to become quite an expert in this business of asking for forgiveness."

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