Tom and Mark Udall’s famous relative called population growth ‘a fundamental disease’


 WASHINGTON, D.C., November 4, 2014 ( – Political dynasties are nothing new in American politics. America has elected the Roosevelts, the Kennedys, the Bushes, the Clintons, the Gores…and now the Udalls. Democrats Mark and Tom Udall – the son and nephew of late Arizona Congressman Mo Udall – are running for re-election to the U.S. Senate today. Often the actions and beliefs of one charismatic family member – Teddy Roosevelt, JFK – set a standard for his scions to attain.

If that's true of the two Udalls, that would be most unfortunate.

In an article he wrote for the July 1969 issue of Arizona Magazine (and which was reprinted in Reader's Digest that December), Mo Udall called population growth “a fundamental disease which must be recognized and treated or it will get far worse.”

Udall told his readers that the other members of the human family are not “a blessing…They are in your way; they make life a little more difficult.”

“I believe, as a matter of fact, that virtually all of our problems either stem from or are intensified by the sheer numbers of people that are now crowded into the limited living spaces of our earth,” he wrote.

In his ideal world, "Every family with two or more children would make a personal, voluntary decision to have no more. Every couple with one child or more would agree to stop with the second."

“The time is rapidly approaching when a large family, whatever its comforts to the home or the ego, may be a disaster to the community, the nation and the world,” he wrote.

By 1969 Udall, who had only served in Congress eight years, already had a long track record as an early advocate of population control.

In 1965, Rep. Morris K. Udall introduced the House companion bill to a proposal by Sen. Ernest Gruening of Alaska. The bill would establish the “Offices for Population Problems” in the State Department (for foreign 'population problems”) and in the Department of Health, Education and Welfare (HEW) for that pesky American population. The departments would begin by distributing family planning information to people when requested “voluntarily.”

The previous year, Morris Udall wrote in a special report to his constituents that, because of alleged global overpopulation, “the human race faces disaster. Beside this problem the Cold War is a Sunday School picnic.” (He went on to deny that "victory over communism" would be possible and repeatedly dubbed the anti-Communist position the “Final Solution.”)

Udall ran for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1976 Despite his own spotty record on racial issues, Jimmy Carter had Detroit Mayor Coleman Young accuse Udall of racism for belonging to the Mormon Church, which did not allow blacks to serve in the priesthood at the time. (Udall had actually boycotted the Church of Latter-Day Saints over that policy.) Ultimately, Udall placed second to Jimmy Carter at the convention. Four years later, he backed Ted Kennedy's presidential campaign. He retired in 1991 – 30 years after entering the House – and died seven years later. Despite his extreme liberalism, the quick-witted congressman believed to his dying day that his problem was he was Too Funny to be President.

Now his son, Mark Udall, is running a campaign against Cory Gardner in Colorado that frets Gardner would deprive women of birth control. His stump speeches have been an anti-maternal monotone, so much so that Denver Post reporter Lynn Bartels called him “Mark Uterus.”

Both of this generation's Udalls are fervent supporters of abortion-on-demand.

They seem to have picked up at least one of his teachings: Mark has two children; Tom has one daughter. (Their second cousin, pro-life conservative Mike Lee of Utah, has three children.)

The National Republican Senatorial Committee ( NRSC) obliquely referenced Mo in an ad entitled, “Mark Udall's Dynasty,” a satire of the steamy 1980s nighttime soap opera, Dynasty.

But their ad did not explicitly mention Mark's famous father. Maybe a party whose leadership would like to nominate is someone named Bush for the third time in 24 years wants to keep its distance from such an argument.

Gardner dipped his toe in the water, saying that “Mark Udall's dad even ran for president” in an ad in which he called the younger Udall “a real [sic] nice guy.”

Udall (Mark, in case you're losing track) immediately construed this as an attack ad, accusing Gardner of going “after my late father and members of my family.” But clearly, the traction Gardner got from the congressman's surname pales next to the advantages Udall has derived from it. And Gardner said nothing negative about Udall's record.

I did. Deservedly so.

New Mexico's Tom Udall has run into some opposition from Republican challenger Allen Weh, who said Udall is simply going into “the family business” and using his dynastic family as a reason the system needs term limits. For more, check out my exclusive interview with Allen Weh.

Given the Udalls' pro-abortion, environmentalist voting record, one wonders if the apple falls far from the tree.  

In final election results, Mark Udall lost to Cory Gardner, while Tom Udall defeated Allen Weh.

Ben Johnson is U.S. Bureau Chief of, the guest host of Nothing But Truth with Crane Durhamon AFR Talk Radio, and the author of three books. His personal website is Connect with him on Facebook and follow him on Twitter.

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