Todd Akin, Ann Romney won’t be at Values Voters summit

September 13, 2012

Reports that Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.) and Mitt Romney's wife, Ann, would appear at the annual social conservative Values Voters conference in Washington this weekend have proven false. 

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins told an audience at the National Press Club on Wednesday that Akin would attend a Family Research Council Political Action Committee meeting scheduled to coincide with the conference. (The FRC hosts the summit as well.) But Akin spokesman Ryan Hite says that Akin won't be anywhere nearby.

"We have not had any plans to attend. He will be in the state campaigning," Hite told the Post. 

Romney, meanwhile, was listed on the Values Voters schedule of events, leading to speculation about the potential first lady's role. But organizers of the summit put unconfirmed guests on the schedule and Romney apparently has no plans to attend.

Mitt Romney's running mate, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), however, will speak.  

At the 2011 summit, tension over Romney's religion boiled up after evangelical megachurch pastor Robert Jeffress called Mormonism "a cult." Romney denounced religious bigotry and "poisonous language" in his remarks. Gay rights groups have urged prominent Republicans to boycott the summit, describing the Family Research Council as an anti-gay "hate group." 

Rachel Weiner covers local politics for The Washington Post.
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