December 06, 2007
Romney's Speech Was Powerful, No Matter How He Fares From Here
Mitt Romney did conservatives and people of faith a huge favor today, by using his remarks on "Faith in America" to make a widely-watched statement on what America has stood for in the past and what makes it a special nation to this day. His campaign could soar after this day; it could stumble to defeat. Either way, our national discourse is better for his speech.
First and foremost the speech was well-written, well-delivered, and eminently Presidential. Chris Matthews of all people said, "For the first time in this campaign, it's long already, I heard greatness this morning." When Chris Matthews agrees with Pat Buchanan something significant must have happened. Practically speaking, however, there are other voices of greater weight responding to the speech, but first allow me to extract just a few short excerpts worthy of mention. First:
As a young man, Lincoln described what he called America's 'political religion' -- the commitment to defend the rule of law and the Constitution. When I place my hand on the Bible and take the oath of office, that oath becomes my highest promise to God. If I am fortunate to become your president, I will serve no one religion, no one group, no one cause, and no one interest. A President must serve only the common cause of the people of the United States.
That passage strikes the note of a fundamentally unique aspect of American society. Because of the nature of our founding as a country, unique in its form (especially in the late 18th Century), we have a civic culture that places particular and noble expectations upon our elected leaders. In one paragraph Romney encapsulated that long-standing creed.
We separate church and state affairs in this country, and for good reason. No religion should dictate to the state nor should the state interfere with the free practice of religion. But in recent years, the notion of the separation of church and state has been taken by some well beyond its original meaning. They seek to remove from the public domain any acknowledgment of God. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It is as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America -- the religion of secularism. They are wrong.
The above passage pierces to the core of a feeling widely held in many circles of faith, regardless of the theology preached in them. On the stump Romney talks about social, economic, and national security conservatives as part of the Republican coalition. The paragraph above speaks directly to a much broader audience of not only conservatives of faith, but also to others not of that label who share such sentiment as well. It is a statement that binds Romney to one of the most passion-inspiring issues among the religious faithful, even those who can in no way countenance the Mormon faith.
Lastly, there was the closing passage that demonstrated the crux of Romney's speech with fitting, historical elegance:
Recall the early days of the First Continental Congress in Philadelphia, during the fall of 1774. With Boston occupied by British troops, there were rumors of imminent hostilities and fears of an impending war. In this time of peril, someone suggested that they pray. But there were objections. "They were too divided in religious sentiments," what with Episcopalians and Quakers, Anabaptists and Congregationalists, Presbyterians and Catholics.
Then Sam Adams rose, and said he would hear a prayer from anyone of piety and good character, as long as they were a patriot.
And so together they prayed, and together they fought, and together, by the grace of God ... they founded this great nation.
Local radio talker and Fred Thompson contributor Kirby Wilbur was highly impressed by the speech, particularly that last section. Wilbur's attraction to those words is a function no doubt of his own love of history. I share that same sentiment and admit to misting up at the last line in the quote when I watched the speech (cheesy, I know, but that's the sappy history major in me coming out). If you have delved with seriousness into even a couple quality books recounting the personal sacrifice and challenges experienced by the Founders you can likely understand why.
Tellingly, it was the forthright discussion of faith in American civic culture that captured the most praise for the speech from key barometers of grassroots conservative and Evangelical thought respectively. Rush Limbaugh said it was "an inspiring speech about American values, " which "hit a bull's-eye." James Dobson said, "Gov. Romney's speech was a magnificent reminder of the role religious faith must play in government and public policy. His delivery was passionate and his message was inspirational." Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention - which has profound theological difference with Mormons - was quoted saying:
"I thought it was a remarkable speech, it was an eloquent speech," said Richard Land, president of the Southern Baptist Convention, who spoke with reporters in the auditorium after the address. Land, who said he will not endorse as a matter of personal policy and obligation to his church, added he thought it was "Kennedy-esque." Land said he thought Romney's points were right, and that discriminating against him on the basis of religion would be un-American, as Romney has said before. Asked if he thought there was anything he thought was missing from the speech, Land said he couldn't think of anything.
Undoubtedly, many secular liberals, among others, will not like Romney's message at all. Locally, Eli Sanders was left largely miffed by what Romney was conveying, in large part because Romney's allegiance to faith as a fundamental part of American public life stands in contrast with what Sanders thinks JFK said nearly 50 years ago. Likewise, local faith-based liberal Joel Connelly missed the memo that a defense of religious freedom by nature includes the freedom not to believe and not to practice, even if faith itself remains a fundamental element in our civic culture.
Also, some members of the media will miss some of the relevance found in key parts of Romney's remarks since the MSM will not soon be accused of being awash with religious conservatives. The worst such example I've seen is the Washington Post's obnoxious headline: "Romney Aims to Prove His Christianity." The speech was nothing of the sort and had Romney actually attempted such theological jujitsu he might as well have withdrawn from the race on the spot. Here at home, the Seattle Times offered a less than ground-breaking story previewing the reaction of local Mormons, as if the broader reaction from local Republicans or local citizens writ large to such a newsworthy address is immaterial.
Byron York highlighted one aspect of why many in the MSM won't capture the resonance of the speech in full: Romney's statements of belief as a conservative of faith resonate with like-minded souls, regardless of theological divides.
In the end, I think it was a speech that needed to be given, as demonstrated ironically by the critiques of two conservatives. David Frum lamented the mere mention of any element of Mormon beliefs as a foot-in-the-door for future queries on the topic. But weren't those topics already swirling in the media in and in assorted religious circles? Similarly, John Podhoretz says in effect the speech was too obvious, it covered no new ground for him. Of course it didn't. Most conservative pundits already embrace much of what Romney said. But given the mystery - most of it negative - surrounding the Mormon faith in the eyes of many in the general public, Romney's very statement of these principles is significant. Without it, too many people are left to extrapolate weird rumors onto Romney when considering his faith, rather than hearing from the man directly about his view on faith in the public square.
Until I read those last two critiques, I wasn't sold the speech needed to happen. Now I absolutely think it did. And it was powerful, no matter what its effect of Romney's campaign. Will it change the minds of those previously dead-set against voting for a Mormon for President? Not a chance. Will it give undecided or not-yet-firmly decided voters with an open mind about Romney a compelling look at him? Certainly. In the end, however, I don't think that was the speech's true strength. Its meaningful voice in our current discourse was.
Whatever you think of Romney, I encourage those that haven't to watch the address, available below, and I would most definitely like to hear from the reading audience on this topic in the comments.
Footnote: I'm a blogger who supports Romney. I try my best to be objective when covering Presidential issues, but prefer to be upfront with readers about who I prefer as a candidate. That said, Hugh Hewitt's descent into caricature touting Romney is painful to watch and a discredit to punditry in the blogosphere.
Posted by Eric Earling at December 06, 2007
10:17 PM | Email This
1. All this means one thing: Romney has excellent speech writers.
I agree. What I like about our country's religious ties, is that religion provides a basic moral framework that is sorely lacking. Progressives fret that there is some kind of vast, right wing conspiracy of robot Evangelical Christians who are about to impose Christian Sharia. That's a fantastically absurd myth in what is obviously a very secular and commerce oriented nation.
But, it's still an important condition of free self-governance that we have a basic civility and morality, and it's good to see Romney bring that American tradition back into the debate, even if it ends up sacrificing his own candidacy.
If I am forced to choose between Religious Right and Secular Progressives, I'll choose the right every time, because at least on the right, there will be some basic decency in accordance with Christian values. On the left, there will be all kinds of blabber about diversity, and compassion, but because there is so much tolerance, there is little expectation of personal responsibility, and thus there won't be much of any morality to keep the hedonism in check, and the welfare at bay.
And ultimately, that's far more destructive for the nation, for the spread of disease, spread of socialism, etc.
Romney will have done a neat trick if he can turn one of his negatives, his Mormonism, into a positive. That is what he is trying to do here.
Some Mormons have some pretty wacky beliefs. I'm not suggesting that Romney has these as well, but if he does, it would be nice if they came to light...
"Under the Banner of Heaven" by Krakauer is a great book on the history and oddities of Mormonism. I reccommend it.
I know that at most LDS services, each person from the congregation who speaks says "I know mine is the one, true church..." and this does not sound like the statement of someone who supports religious tolerance. How many times has Romney uttered that line? How does that make you feel?
4. I read the speech. I will at some point view it to see how he delivered it. It was incrediably well written. It does point up that there really is a cultural divide between those who profess a faith tradition and those who, in my opinion, misread the Constitution and wish to remove all religious expression from the public square. This was an outstanding speech and I agree with the sentiment.
I am a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I am pleased that Governor Romney articulated such passionate and inclusive speech on (F)aith in America and hope that it will help to bring freedom-loving people of all faiths together to address the pressing issues of our day.
One criticism that has been made of the speech is that he only mentioned the word "Mormon" once. Please do not overlook the myriad references he made to "his faith" and "his religion" as he referenced those points of faith (not doctrine) that Mormon's share with our Catholic, Evangelical, Protestant, Methodist, Lutheran, Baptist and other neighbors.
Some may be disappointed that he did not discuss the specifics of Mormon theology. He answers such criticism in his speech when he says that [n]o candidate should become the spokesman for his faith. To do so would have been inappropriate for any candidate and would only have drawn attention to differences and defeated the purpose of his remarks. He did exactly what he needed to do: He sought to establish common ground by stating his belief that "Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of all mankind" and acknowledging that his "church's beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history".
Does this statement of belief conflict with his assertion that he does not "define his candidacy by [his] religion? No. The reason being is that he had to address the question he gets everywhere he goes: What does [he] believe about Jesus Christ? Asked and answered, he moved on to the unifying points of his speech with the communicative skill reminiscent of Reagan, Kennedy or a select short list of others.
As a Mormon, I appreciate his conviction in asserting his belief in the faith of his fathers without apologies and irrespective of political consequence.
I would agree with others who have described the content and communication of Mr. Romney's speech as presidential. This was a defining speech for the governor with relevance for all Americans of faith and one that the political discourse should welcome whatever its impact on Governor Romney's campaign. Previously undecided, I will cast my vote with many of different faiths for the message of optimism, principles, values and unity that Governor Romney will bring to the office of the president and the people of America, whatever their faith.
I know that many theologians do not classify Mormans as Christians. Christians routinely repeat the Nicene Creed. The affirmation is:
"And we believe one holy catholic and apostolic Church. We acknowledge one baptism for the remission of sins. And we look for the resurrection of the dead, and the life of the world to come. Amen"
In this sense, "catholic" refers to the "body of Christ" known as the Christian Church.
Face it Bruce, you would have just a much of a problem with any person of faith because your agenda is to totally remove religion from the public square.
As someone who was raised Catholic, I grew to appreciate the traditions of the Church. But like most religions, we were taught that Catholicism was the superior faith and all other religions were inferior. And therein, lies the problem with Mr. Romney. All religions think they're superior so they feel obligated to impose their religions on others. The last thing we need is another faith-based President.
I listened to Romney's speech and it seemed more like a "I promise I won't turn America in to a Theocracy" speech. It wasn't very convincing.
Here are some of his one liners -
"Radical violent Islam seeks to destroy us."
How is that going to happen? How are they going to destroy 300 million people when they're 10,000 miles away? The only way Islam is going to destroy us, the U.S., is if the firewall of separation between church and state is not kept intact. I don't want forced Christian prayers in school anymore than I want forced Muslim prayers kissing the floor. Keep the firewall up and we'll all be safe from radical Islam.
"Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom."
Freedom requires religion? Says who? Last time I checked freedom requires a Constitution and a President and a Congress and a public that wants to preserve it. It doesn't require religion.
Those were just 2 points that I found needed some explaining that Mr. Romney did not provide.
As a practical matter, when the Big One hits in Seattle you have to ask yourself, do you want a President who gets on TV and says, A) "My prayers are with the people in Earthquake-devastated Seattle?" or B) "I'm mobilizing every possible resource to help Earthquake victims?" I choose President B.
To sort fact from fiction: Under the Banner of Heaven was about a group of ex-communicated Mormons who took their beliefs too far. They do not represent the views of Mormons any more than Eric Rudolph (infamous for bombing abortion clinics) represents the views of mainstream Christianity.
I would agree with you in that Under the Banner of Heaven is a good book. It however is not about Mormons or Mormonism.
I hear the arguments you are making in regard to not only Catholicism, but Christianity in general. Christianity, at the core teaches there is only one "Way." Still, I find it stange that this nation which was founded by those predominately of the Christian faith and Western Europe are more tolerant of other religions than other areas in the world. There is the case of a young woman in Malaysia who converted to Christianity and now must immigrate because she cannot get her legal religious identification changed to Christian so she can marry in the faith. I hear many accuse conservative Christians of being the Taliban or worse. Do you know of any mainstream conservative Christians who advocate burning the houses of worship of other faiths? Do they advocate killing those of other faiths?
Finally, you say:
"A) "My prayers are with the people in Earthquake-devastated Seattle?" or B) "I'm mobilizing every possible resource to help Earthquake victims?" I choose President B."
I am not aware that a president can't do both. Many people of faith are just not the idiots that secularists want to sterotype them as.
Andrew, did you read the same book I did? Krakauer's book is about Smith and the other founders of the LDS church, and the current and recent church leaders. It lays out the history, and the mythology of the origin of the Book of Mormon.
Yes, it also talks about some of the members and their actions. These two Mormons come to believe that their faith requires them to commit a murder, and they carry it out. But that is just one small thread in the book.
So, is your church the one true church? Tell us.
Was Krakauer's book banned by the LDS church? I hear they do that. My first wife used to be in a Mormon ladies book group. I've seen how tight and insular the community tends to be. This has advantages... and disadvantages.
I find plenty of reasons not to vote for Romney that has nothing to do with his mormonism/faith. If he beleives that his church is the one true church i think if anything that makes him more like every other christian. I would think lesser of him if he thought his church was not the best or one true church.
I think mormons have some pretty weird views probably more than morst christians but what i have found in growing up near alot of them is the mormon stereotype basically consists of a bunch of positives. I trust them more than any other religion in terms of knowing they are going to be honest, nice, helpful, polite, and self reliant group etc...
Unfortunately Romney is an exception to this stereotype and consequently I would never vote for him.
I see the Paulist have checked in with their "faith is bad" drivel. This time it is Mormonism, next time it will be Methodist, Evangelical, or Catholic. But if you are secular (like Paul?) you are OK?
Give me a person of Christ based faith over any non believer any day. Being one of Evangelical Faith, we pray for non believers, but belief is a choice not a requirement. No one can force you to believe in Jesus Christ! Although there are "religions" who will kill you if you don't belong to their belief--Islamic comes to mind.
I have been following the postings re the Presidential Candidates to find where they stand. The purpose was to find "my" candidate. However all I get is the negative from the Ronnie Paul group.
Eric, How about putting something up on the blog about the 2% candidate? Might cost you a few pages of Bruce & Travis writing their essays, but maybe they would get over it.
However, my reason for reading Sound Politics postings about presidential candidates, is to find out more about each. Mr. Romney is not my choice (yet) to be the GOP candidate, but after his speech, if he were, I would vote for him.
13. The speech hit the right note because Romney was able to place himself squarely in the American mainstream tradition insofar as public life and personal faith are concerned. Frankly, it is the first time I have heard him speak with any passion about anything, and the result for me at least is to have a higher regard for him as a candidate than before.
14. The speech hit the right note because Romney was able to place himself squarely in the American mainstream tradition insofar as public life and personal faith are concerned. Frankly, it is the first time I have heard him speak with any passion about anything, and the result for me at least is to have a higher regard for him as a candidate than before.
Under Romney's reasoning, an person of "faith" is better than a person of no faith. There is no matter what "faith" one might adhere to it should not be questioned. So no matter how crazy it is off limits according to Romney. So if someone runs who believes in 39 different gods we better not hear a peep out of anyone about the crazyness of this as the person running has "faith".
Romney would sellout his religion, his principles, and his mom to become president. Mr. Flipflop to the extreme.
Huckabee, McCain, Thompson, anyone but Romney in '08.
Romney's Speech Was Powerful, No Matter How He Fares From Here by Eric Earling
Bruce Guthrie December 6, 2007
" Some Mormons have some pretty wacky beliefs "
This comment made by someone who supports Ron Paul?
17. I will say that the speech has prompted me to research the Mormon beliefs. Left radio is already comparing this to Scientology. The reaction, posts and articles have been extreme on both sides. The most common word the detractors use is "cult". The Mormon defenders seem to be saying "Don't worry - we are Christians". Kennedy did make a very specific statement when his Catholic beliefs were an issue. I do remember Kennedy addressed a very sceptical group of Protestant ministers when he gave his speech.
The "Freedom requires religion..." segment was, in my opinion, a huge mistake and I can see the TV spots already.
Do Mormons believe that Jesus is the brother of Satan?
Do Mormon men become gods of their own planets peopled with virgins when they die?
I've heard these claims recently.
Let me see if I understand ...
Being religious is important because it shapes one's morality, helps one decide what is right and what is wrong.
My reliogn will have no effect in how I govern?
What is wrong here?
Well, he convinced me. I was already strongly leaning his way but yesterday's speech gave me the info I needed.
I haven't decided about Romney. I haven't chosen a candidate yet.
I am very definitely devout Catholic and I worry about some of what Mormons teach, especially their radically male centered society.
HOWEVER, if a Mormon President Romney can show Americans the beauty of family and that more of America focusing on and dedicated to family will improve all of American lives, then I approve.
The speech was a home run. There is a reason Mitt is in the top 2 right now.
If you've got time to find faults with it...you've got too much time on your hands and are really missing the point.
I say this half joking so as not to group myself with the moon bats- but if Hillary gets to put her hand on that bible to make an oath- it's because she made a contract with the devil.
I just found this. If true, the answers appear to be yes. Not clear why it was banned by the church, though.
Romney's Speech Was Powerful, No Matter How He Fares From Here by Eric Earling
#18 Nancy December 7, 20007
" I've heard these claims recently. "
Really? You have " .... heard these claims recently. "?
25. Yes, Brian, it's been in the news a bit recently for some reason. Should I have heard them earlier?
26. One thing I don't understand yet is what happens to women in heaven, if it is different from what happens to men.
I'm not supporting anyone. But, wasn't he Governor of Mass ? I don't know of any press reports that say he governed in a more whacky manner than any of their other politicians. Isn't Mass the home of Barney Frank and other super secular progressives? Do you have any press reports that citizens thought that he was evil or nuts?
For me, there are two issues:
I am stating my opinion:
a. Are Mormans Christians? I don't think so.
b. Does it matter that in my opinion they are not Christians if a Mormon is running for office. To me, no. I like people of faith who share similar values to me. I like Senator Lieberman who is Jewish and would vote for him. The whack job representative from Minn who is Black and a Muslim. I wouldn't vote for and I would campaign against him, not because he is either Black or a Muslim, but because he is a whack job. If there were a Muslim who shared my values, I would consider voting for them.
The issue for all candidates is what are their values and could they govern responsibily and effectively. I don't think that most people of faith want to shove their religion down some one's throat.
"1. All this means one thing: Romney has excellent speech writers.
Posted by: Noble on December 6, 2007 10:37 PM "
Romney wrote the majority of that speech himself. No speech writers were harmed in the making of that wonderful speech.
29. Cult + 100 Years = Religon
If looking at all religions objectively, I don't think Mormonism looks anymore 'whacky' or cultish than most of the mainstream protestant religions. With that said, if Republicans are going to make "Christian Values" a central theme in thier political platform (and they should not IMHO), they shouldn't act shocked or angry when they get asked about the details of the belief system they belong to.
For example, don't you think it's a little disingenuous for Huckabee to be touting his Christian faith in just about every political ad his campaign has out there, and then be all taken-aback when the media folks start asking about the details?
Ken Howard @ 12, Ron Paul is a Christian.
I don't count that against him because he doesn't tend to use expressions of his faith in order to gain power and popularity, as Huckabee and Romney have done. Jesus expressly denounced this kind of "Pharisee" behavior.
I support Ron Paul, even though I am an atheist, because he would never try to force his religious views on others via the law.
I don't trust Huckabee or Romney in that regard.
It is the separation of church and state that gives us freedom of religion and conscience. In spite of Romney's words in this recent speech, I do not trust him to maintain this vital separation.
By the way, we also need, to the greatest extent possible, a separation of ECONOMY and state and a separation of EDUCATION and state. I think that the reason we have vibrant religion with nearly 90% participation in the US, but Europe has half that, is that in Europe they have state sponsored religion. I think the same vibrancy we have in the religious sphere could be achieved in the economic and educational spheres if we separated these more completely from the government.
Romney's Speech Was Powerful, No Matter How He Fares From Here by Eric Earling
#25 Posted by Nancy December 7, 2007
" Yes, Brian, it's been in the news a bit recently for some reason. Should I have heard them earlier? "
Nancy, I closely follow the 'news' and I didn't see or hear anything about your '.... claims .....'. Do you think that is because we just have a different opinion of what is 'news'? Or is it simply because of the source of your 'news'?
Funny how pitiful Eric continues to support this flip flopping moron.
ABR--ANYBODY BUT ROMNEY!!!
Theyll have a hay day with him, just like we had with Kerry.
34. Brian, I'm not sure what news sources have to do with it, but these issues were mentioned to me by friends and family. I will say that I wouldn't vote against Romney because he's Mormon. Many of the kindest and most ethical people I've known are Mormons. I am concerned about the seeming attempts to keep certain details secret, though, which your tone also implies.
Silly me, I thought we were electing the President, not national pastor...
Look, a person's moral bearing is important in politics; it can tell you where they may stand on many social issues. To me, I do not care where the bearing came from, it is the actual stand they take that matters to me.
For example many religious backgrounds teach the same fundamental belief; Mormon, Christian, Jew, Muslim, Hindu, Bhuddist all have the belief that an unborn life IS life. I don't care WHERE the candidate "got" their position, I care about the position.
Those who use Mormonism - or Catholicism, or Judaism, or other religous background - to disqualify a political candidate are really just using it as an easy out. They're too uncomfortable to actually state their opposition to the social positions the candidate takes. So will use the guise of "religion" to hide their actual positions.
Romney's Speech Was Powerful, No Matter How He Fares From Here by Eric Earling
#34 Posted by Nancy December 7, 2007
" Brian, I'm not sure what news sources have to do with it, but these issues were mentioned to me by friends and family. "
Ah! No wonder I hadn't seen or heard anything about your '.... claims .....', I don't sit around the old wood stove whittling and jawing with the folks about " issues ".
As for " what news sources have to do with it ", you mentioned " it ", " it " being " Do Mormons believe that Jesus is the brother of Satan? Do Mormon men become gods of their own planets peopled with virgins when they die? ", having been in the news a bit recently for some reason (comment #25).
Really, " for some reason "?
No, Brian, "it" referred to Mormonism ("they" would have referred to those specific issues), hence the discussions. The following link, which I posted above, was posted on a news site today and raises these issues and a few others: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zy0d1HbItOo
What I don't understand is, why the defensiveness (off the charts, in your case) and attempt to keep it secret? All religions that I'm aware of have some doctrinal aspects that are difficult to explain.
I have not bashed Mormonism, in fact I have praised it. I have not bashed people having faith either.
And lastly, Paul is not without faith. He is not a secularist. He just does not speak about his faith in a presidential election. I am not saying this as a negative torwards Romney. He for the most part has not either and I completly understand why he has to.
Mormons have been persecuted for no good reason in this country and are still discriminated against. I was listening to talk radio on the way home and heard some more mormon bashing. I am saddened by it. One thing I pride waashington on is it is fairly tolerant compared to the other state I have lived in (New York).
Because of this mormon bashing that is still present in our country I think Romneys speech was required and he handled it decently. I just wish he was more like other mormons I have met... I might consider voting for him if he were.
Bruce G "It is the separation of church and state that gives us freedom of religion and conscience. In spite of Romney's words in this recent speech, I do not trust him to maintain this vital separation."
Now Bruce, I know you want to try to put Ron Paul in the best light possible, but this is just silly. What do you think he is going to forcibly convert everyone to Mormonism? Make Mormonism the national religion? Or what?
We have moved much further the other direction due to the ACLU habitually suing municipalities for Christmas displays and crosses for veterens. I'm not personally all that religious, but I object to the cultural changes that the ACLU attempts to instigate (plus the fact that they seem to be socialists).
This country is at NO risk of becoming a theocracy or anything close to it and it would certainly not be Romney that moved the country in that direction.
P.S. As a constitutionalist, I'm surprised you use the non-constitutional phrase "seperation of church and state". The actual constitutional wording is "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof;"
40. "seperation" should be "separation"...
41. I don't think this really has much to do with the fact that Romney is Mormon. After all, Harry Reid is Mormon, and it has never, ever been an issue relating to him or to any of the other, I think, five members of Congress who are Mormon. I have never heard anyone screeching that Harry Reid is a cult member and similar offensive innuendos. This is about smearing a Republican candidate. End of story. The Romney speech was masterful. So far, he is the only candidate, either side, that has made what I call a "Presidential" speech. Good for him!
Romney's speech had some traction and will likely help him in the primaries. If other Presidential candidates were smart, they would give a speech like that themselves (Republicans will need more help like this if they hope to win).
The difference between Romney and Kerry is that Romney is sincere.
43. There are 16 members of Congress who are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of LDS/Mormons. All wonderful people who do not let the Church dictate how they vote or act in government. Mitt 2008!
Desparation. Some of the most interesting stuff to come out of campaigns only comes out because of desparation. He didn't explain his Mormon beliefs, or why most of his money is coming from Mormon areas.
Would anyone here trust a candidate who got such a huge amount of their campaign funds from trial lawyers? How about even from big companies, or just labor unions? Why is it that for someone who has raised so much money that UTAH is his second biggest supporting state, trailing just California? Check out the Mormon population maps and that will tell you.
If a candidate is bought and paid for by trial lawyers, then you can expect that candidate to do their bidding.....if so much Mormon money is flowing into Romney's campaign, doesn't that just make you wonder?
Yes it makes me wonder why I do not like Romney more. Mormons are good people as a whole so if they are behind Romney it says something. unfortunately Romneys positions say even more and so I do not support him.
I grew up in a community that was largely Catholic and Mormon. I even attended Mormon church for about 6 months. I quit because I learned that there were 3 levels of heaven and Jesus was on the top one so even if you get to heaven, you may not see Jesus. (I also learned about the "sacred undergarments".
Please. In religion there's just crazy and crazier (which religion? take your pick).
I loved Romney saying that the cathedrals in Europe are all empty. He's been to them all? He's likely right though. Europeans don't wear their religion on their sleeves like Americans. (John Kennedy's speech was actually about not wearing your religion on your sleeve and trying to stuff it down the next guy's throat. Religion used to be personal.)
At least he's honest. He has no use for Americans who aren't religious and particularly aren't Christians.
What an empty suit.
I chatted with Dr. Richard Land before the YouTube debate. A fine fellow. I couldn't remember who he was until halfway through the debate.
Note that while Land said he would not endorse, he was sitting in a seat reserved for "Fred Thompson Family" at the debate, sitting next to Fred's wife, Jeri. He's also from Tennessee and is a longtime friend of Fred's.