The race issue has come up again in American politics with a question to Mitt Romney about the doctrines of the “Book of Mormon”.
This guy named Bret Hatch apparently got the microphone at a Mitt Romney town hall meeting and started reading quotes from the Book of Mormon about blacks and their being a curse and the idea that because of that people of color are somehow a lesser people.
Romney cut this man off and demanded that he ask a question. Mr. Hatch (apparently a Ron Paul supporter) then asked if Romney thinks it is okay for a white man to marry a black woman.
Mitt Romney responded with a firm “NO!” The question is, can old Mitt “un-ring” the bell?
The race card has officially been pulled almost at the same moment that Mitt started to shift his campaign from a focus on the republican primary to the Presidential election. Now that this has been mentioned and has made the news, it will be a growing conversation from here on out.
Mitt may be able to pull a similar card on the President by bringing up the man that President Obama was calling his pastor when he was first elected, Jeremiah Wright. The only problem Mr. Romney will have with this argument is that the Reverend Jeremiah Wright is an individual with racist leanings that President Obama has long distanced himself from and the Book of Mormon is the religious doctrine of his faith.
This is a real problem for the Romney campaign is on two fronts:
- The racial tension of the country is mounting fast and the Republican party is already skating on thin racial ice.
- The Religious Right, a huge part of his own Republican party already has huge doubts about his Mormon faith and this just brings those things to the surface amidst heated words from other candidates from his own party.
Ol’ Mitt is the most likely candidate by far, but he is taking a beating before he has even begun the real presidential campaigning.
This is also a big problem for the Republican party, which has been struggling to distance itself from the idea that it is the party for those who think minorities are somehow lesser people except for a rare few that join them. Count this as another step, way in the wrong direction.
I am forced to think that this might be one of those things that might demonstrate that he might not be the best candidate as he might not be electable. His own party doesn’t like him, his religious leanings are going to be an ongoing stress, many think of him as a flip-flopper, and other Republican politicians are having a field day discussing why he is not a good candidate (some suddenly endorsing him later).
I cannot see these questions going away and any answer to the race and the Book of Mormon question has the challenge of trying to convince people that the written doctrine of his religion and his beliefs are at complete opposites ends of the spectrum. (Although I do believe the official stance of the church has departed away from such doctrine, it is still in writing).