You know that feeling when you can’t grasp why something has happened when it appears to make no sense at all? That’s where I am with trying to understanding how fellow citizens can consider voting for Mitt Romney for president. There is just so much evidence that Mr. Romney has no personal conviction that can’t be muted if his political strategists tell him to.
Exhibit One: Reproductive Rights
As documented in Byron York’s article in the conservative newspaper Washington Examiner dated 12/29/2011, Mr. Romney was advised by his political strategist for his senatorial campaign that running as a pro-life candidate was not a likely winning position in Massachusetts. Mr. Romney, a reportedly devout Mormon, informed his pro-life church that he would be running as a pro-choice candidate. See, personal convictions can be so easily tossed aside when politically expedient. In 2002, while running for Governor, Mr. Romney continued with his pro-choice stance signing the Pro-Choice Pledge organized by Planned Parenthood.
Exhibit Two: Planned Parenthood
But strategists and localities change and Mr. Romney convictions flop like a fish out of water. While running for the US Presidency in 2008 and 2012, we saw Mr. Romney transformed into Mr. Severely Conservative. “Planned Parenthood, we’re going to get rid of that.” (This was after the 1994 donation of $150 that he and his wife Ann made to it.)
Exhibit Three: Birth Control
No longer being advised to support women’s reproductive rights by his strategists, Mr. Romney doesn’t restrict his new found beliefs to abortion. Mr. Romney went native on Mike Huckabee’s talk show, the darling of the religious right. He threw his support behind the so-called Personhood Amendments. Personhood amendments give a fertilized egg all rights bestowed on American citizens. These laws will make the most popular birth control measures (birth control pills/shots and intra-uterine devices) illegal.
When confronted with polling data that birth control is deemed morally acceptable by 89 percent of the population, Mr. Romney tried to walk back his comments about restricting contraceptive rights during the second presidential debate. Which is it Mr. Romney: are you for the Personhood Amendments or not? I guess it depends on which strategist has your attention or the audience in front of you.
Exhibit Four: Going After Bin Laden
During a 2007 interview, Mr. Romney said it was “not worth moving heaven and earth” to catch Bin Laden. He argued further that we should not be talking about crossing allied countries’ borders in pursuit of Bin Laden. Yet when President Obama made the call to go after Bin Laden in Pakistan, Mr. Romney said “any president” would have made the same call. Really?
As many have commented before me, and apologies to Eminem: Will the real Mitt Romney please stand up? With President Obama and Vice President Biden, they say what they mean and mean what they say. That’s why they are getting my vote.
Celeste M. Descoteaux
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