Stephen Moore, the conservative pundit who has been tapped by President Donald Trump for an open seat on the Federal Reserve board, cracked wise in columns about his jobless wife, using Hillary Clinton’s photo to potty train one son, and flirting with a “gorgeous 20-something blonde” with his other son in the car.
In a 2003 National Review Online column, Moore joked that he had deployed an “ingenious child rearing technique” of taping “gruesome pictures” of Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein’s dead, mangled sons on the family refrigerator with the written message: “THIS IS WHAT HAPPENS TO KIDS THAT GROW UP TO BE DEMOCRATS!”
In 2004, Moore wrote another National Review Online column, a “Happy Christmas” letter that likewise was clearly intended to be humorous. In the piece, Moore griped about his young sons’ poor athletic performance and his then-3-year-old boy being diagnosed with “low-muscle tone” by a pediatrician.
“He might as well have told us that [the boy] has AIDS,” Moore wrote.
The columns have come to light on the heels of exposure of Moore’s divorce records, which show how his ex-wife Allison had accused him of adultery, of subjecting her to “emotional and psychological abuse,” and of shorting her on more than $300,000 he had agreed to pay her in a divorce settlement, alimony and child support until a judge held him in contempt of court. The IRS has a $75,000 tax lien on Moore for unpaid income taxes from his 2014 tax return. Moore is contesting that amount.
On Tuesday, Trump’s top economics advisor, Larry Kudlow, a key backer of Moore’s nomination, told reporters that the White House is speaking with “a number of” other potential “candidates” for the Fed’s two open board seats besides Moore and former Godfather’s Pizza CEO Herman Cain, whose selection by the president likewise has faced criticism.
Kudlow also said that Moore and Cain are both still in the vetting process, and that “we support” both men’s candidacies for the central bank posts.
A spokeswoman for Moore told CNBC that he had no comment on either Kudlow’s remarks, or on his columns.
In her 2010 divorce complaint, Allison Moore said she was the “primary caretaker and role model for the parties’ children.”
“She quit her job to devote her time to raising their children,” the complaint said.
But Allison Moore’s lack of a job was a subject of jabs by her husband in the joke-laden National Review Online columns – which appear to be written as parodies of annual family Christmas letters. In the essays, he routinely referred to himself in the third person.
“Allison consumes, but she still doesn’t produce,” Moore wrote of his then-wife in a December 2003 column in the National Review. “She now falls into the category of what economists call ‘long-term unemployed.’ Steve describes her as the family’s ‘loss leader’.”
“She manages to keep busy though, what with her anger-management class in the morning, Weight Watchers in the afternoon, and then Tuesday and Thursday evenings when she and Steve attend couple’s therapy,” he wrote.
A year later, Moore wrote in a column, “No, Allison STILL doesn’t have a job, but thanks SO much for asking.”
In his 2003 column, Moore wrote that “one highlight” of that year was getting his 2-year-old son potty trained” by Moore’s “brilliant idea of pasting a photo of Hillary Clinton with a bullseye target on the bottom of the potty.”
“And ever since then, it’s been like Niagara Falls — and with perfect accuracy — every time nature calls.”
In her divorce filing, Allison said Moore in 2010 had created two Match.com accounts with the aim of connecting “romantically with other women.” The filing said Moore began what was “by his own admission … a romantic adulterous relationship” with a woman, and that he once said to the Moore’s children in front of Allison: “I have two women, and what’s really bad is when they fight over you.”
Nine years earlier, in a National Review end-of-year column entitled “Some Christmas Jeer,” Moore wrote: “Will someone out there please help us get Allison a job? It’s not so much that we need her income, but that when she sits at home idly day after day she becomes a compulsive shopper.”
But Moore also noted in the same column “that Steve, too, has done his part to nudge the economy along. A few months ago he bought a cherry red Camaro convertible,” which his “22-year-old college intern” told him “”screams midlife crisis!'”
“On more than one occasion Steve has been cruising around town with the top down and a gorgeous 20-something blond has pulled up beside him: he looks longingly at her, she gives him a ‘come hither look,’ and then the mood is spoiled when she sees [one son] drooling in the baby seat and then [the older sons] start making weird faces at her,” Moore wrote.
“She sticks her finger in her mouth and zooms off and Steve is left screaming at the kids: ‘How many times do I have to tell you tyrants to stay out of sight when I’m hitting on girls?'”
“And then [one son], with a puzzled look on his face says, ‘but daddy, we already have a mommy,'” Moore wrote. “And then Steve says, ‘Yes, but imagine, just for a moment, how nice it would be if you had a much younger mommy.'”