17 July 2007

A Mormon in the Rockies?

Mitt Romney sweeps Colorado tomorrow: crashing El Paso County’s Lincoln Day Dinner, lunching with Basalt natives, and backslapping West Englewood backers.

The Centennial State may receive him coolly. Although the Governor is Colorado’s top Republican fundraiser, raking in $374,575; he gleans only 9% of Republican primary votes, according to an American Research Group poll taken in March.

Today’s Denver Post lays out Romney’s hurdles in the race for conservative Christians, who mistrust his Mormon faith:

“‘I don't believe that conservative Christians in large numbers will vote for a Mormon, but that remains to be seen,' James Dobson, founder of the Colorado Springs-based but nationally influential Focus on the Family evangelical ministry, said in a radio interview in October.”

(In May, Dobson swore he would skip the 2008 presidential election rather than vote for Rudy Giuliani, if Rudy were the Republican candidate.)

Besides the rhetoric, the statistics seem even worse:

“Researchers at the Pew Forum on Religion and Public Life say a survey they conducted in February found that 30 percent of U.S. adults were less likely to support a Mormon for president…only 4 percent of adults would be less likely to vote for an African-American, the same percentage of those less likely to vote for a Christian. It also found that 11 percent would be less likely to vote for a woman.”

But these numbers may be bunk. Voters will change their minds once confronted with a flesh-and-blood candidate, rather than the theoretically unelectable Mormon that the press pushes. That spooky Mormon may seem a Godsend when the other choice is a robotic Hillary Clinton.

So Mitt’s off to Colorado, leaving us Nutmeggers to watch his new commercial, “Oceans.” I’m unsure how effective it is, but if you turn off the sound, it’s a relaxing visual.


Anonymous said...

Do you have an email address for tips?