10/17/2012 01:26 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

These Men Have Issues: Meet the Natal Horoscopes of Obama and Romney

Once I read an article in an astrology magazine about how to figure out who is going to win the presidential election. "The person with the worst chart wins," said the author, who had been paying attention for a while. Astrology, a vastly complex subject, often seems best suited for teaching in one-line quips.

I don't want to predict who will "win" the election, mainly because the process seems so heaped on with agendas, puppetry, muppetry, dishonesty, paranoia, Big Bird being served for Thanksgiving dinner and, most of all, a lot of money, that I doubt there will be an actual winner. After a fuss, someone will take office. That said, it's now that time in the election season to look at the charts of these candidates, make some observations and ask some questions.

First, though, a birth data check. When doing natal astrology it's essential to have good data, or to know when you don't. Such a big deal has been made of Obama's birth certificate that we know his time better than any candidate, ever. He was not born in Kenya. He was born in Hawaii when it was actually a state. His data gets the highest rating: AA (which means birth certificate in hand), even if Donald Trump doesn't like it.

As for Romeo, his data gets an A rating, the second highest, by our profession's greatest ever collector of birth data, the late Lois Rodden. (An A rating can mean "from memory," because either he was wearing a watch when he was born, his mom told Rodden, or it was reported in the newspaper.)

Let's start with Obama. There's only one thing I respect about him, which is an aspect in his chart. Obama's Leo Sun is opposite a very weird minor planet: Damocles, named after the guy from the Greek legend.

I say weird because this little planet has an elongated orbit, and it spends nearly all of its time in Aquarius, then races through the other signs in a very short time, and then is back in Aquarius for what seems like forever. It was named for a slave who was envious of the magnificent fortune of the tyrant he served. So the tyrant said, OK, you want to be king? Have a seat in my throne. Sitting there, he noticed a sword that dangled all the time by a single thread, usually over the king's head but now his, and the thread could snap at any moment.

Obama has his regal Leo Sun so precisely opposite Damocles that it really does feel like the sword hanging by a thread (the opposition is exact to a quarter of a degree). To me this gives new meaning to the line, "It's either his brains or his signature would be on the contract," from the scene in The Godfather. This is the famous scene where the guy is made an offer he cannot refuse. Obama lives under this pressure all the time, which is why I think he would sign the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) even if he didn't want to. You can claim you wouldn't sign a law that allows U.S. citizens to be arrested as enemy combatants, but then, you've never sat underneath that sword.

There's a house called the 8th house, important in astrology for many reasons (most often, a map to financial matters), though in part because it sometimes describes the nature and cause of death, and a relationship to the topic. Obama has Mars there. He fears a violent death, and he's likely to be easily swayed by that idea. He doesn't need it explained to him. He passes this fear off as a kind of intellectual rationalizing, but it looks like he's easily manipulated by the silent knowledge that he could end up like so many other politicians who refused the offer.

Obama has had a deeply troubled past -- worse than we know about. He was subjected to some kind of extreme psychological cruelty as a child, and it haunts him constantly. He is the living incarnation of The Drama of the Gifted Child, and he probably thinks he's our therapist. He is also tapped into some deep, ancestral cruelty -- a pattern abuse that goes back generations.

There is also a security and comfort factor here. It's as if he was so often subjected to a morph of psychological and emotional abuse that he feels safe in a danger zone, which I guess should be a prerequisite for any president. One problem, however, is that his Moon is in Gemini, and this has a way of splitting him in half; the psychological word is dissociative. This is a typical response to extreme abuse. What it does is give him the ability to go around his ethical guidelines, or to work with two separate sets of ethics.

This becomes a problem when we consider other aspects to his Sun, and nearby Mercury. Both are square Neptune, which is not given to honesty. In fact this is a situation where the person must do a lifetime of learning and growth to learn what honesty is, what it means to be real with yourself and who you want to be. There is an integrity problem here.

Obama is also born in the evening, moments after sunset. This puts many factors of his chart on the relationship side of the wheel; he is a Leo Sun with Aquarius rising. Charts like this can produce people who will morph into whatever they need, in order to get the approval of others. By itself, this can be worked with, but with so many other factors suggesting integrity problems, the bottom line is we have no idea who this person really is.

Do we ever know who a public figure is, with no personal experience? There are always limits, of course, but some people are more transparent than others. And some are less.

Let's consider Mitt Romney. The first thing I see when I look at his chart is Venus as the highest planet. Venus, a planet involved with emotional receptivity and emotional intelligence, is in Aquarius. In her classic work, Secrets from a Stargazers Notebook, Debbi Kempton Smith described this as a person who acts like an $80 robot from Sears. She wrote this in the '70s, I guess back when Sears sold little robots.

Have you ever seen that YouTube video of Romney campaigning for Senate in Massachusetts about 20 years ago? The one where he walks into a diner, and everyone is sitting around eating. "This is terrific! What's going on here today?" This, as if he's never seen people eating. He bumbles around: "Look, a room full of humans. They are eating. They are eating food. Hello, humans! What does your food taste like? Hello! I am a politician. Is your food tasty?"

And so on. It would be painful to watch, were it not so damned strange. I'll come back to Venus in Aquarius -- his whole chart pivots around this placement. Note, if you have it, it doesn't automatically make you a robot; you might just be a little like Mr. Spock.

Romney born with the Sun in Pisces, along with a cluster of other planets -- Mercury, Ceres and Mars among them. Pisces is the sign of illusions; it changes constantly. Mercury happened to be retrograde in Pisces when he was born, which is like a long discussion with yourself, where you don't necessarily tell the truth, and which can break into a full-on argument. It's also about marching to the beat of a drummer that nobody else can hear.

The first thing I think of when I see this Pisces cluster is "pleasure seeking." I know we think of Romney as "business guy," but really he is Mr. Lifestyle. He wants you to know it, and he wants it to be visible. The reason he can't be humbler about his car elevator is that he wants you to know he has one. What good is a car elevator otherwise?

This is confirmed by his powerful, very exact Scorpio conjunction of the Moon and Jupiter. This describes both sex and money: he can never get enough, no matter how much he has. How he goes about this doesn't matter; it's meeting the goal that does. This aspect screams with entitlement, as if he personally inherited the world. Maybe he was a Mormon on another planet, did very well and got the Earth as his reward.

Now, back to that Venus. I said that it's the highest planet in his chart -- the most elevated in the sky. That gives it a lot of what the old astrologers called "accidental dignity." Even though Venus isn't terribly happy in Aquarius, it's particularly strong in Romney's chart.

Strong -- and under siege. It's at one point of a cross -- called a grand cross. To one side is the planet of psychological abuse (Nessus). For this guy, love is like a bitter pill. To another side is Chiron, which has him going from one emotional high to the next. And it's opposed by Saturn and Pluto -- chilly and threatening. I think of two things when I look at this pattern. First, Mitt Romney is a three-hooker kind of guy. He needs the three most beautiful, best-dressed and most expensive call girls in town. Then he needs them to do all manner of delightfully perverse things to him, simultaneously, 'til they start to get sleepy.

Second, he's pulled in four different directions all the time. He 'doesn't know who he is' because he's split four ways down the middle; it's like he's drawn and quartered psychically. But he's learned how to juggle this, and the man knows how to have fun. Especially in public office.

For sure, Obama's chart is worse.