Over the last several months I have become very interested in politics. I'd never been too political before, but I knew what I valued and which party reflected my values and that's how I voted. Last summer I read "A Mormon in the White House" and became intrigued. I really liked what I read about Mitt Romney, but I realized I needed to know about the other candidates before I could decide Mitt was the one. And what I learned is that I really can't stand McCain (or Obama or Hillary), and the more I listened to Romney, the more I liked him (maybe even loved him). So I was upset to hear when he dropped out of the race. Upset is probably an understatement. I realize this post isn't exactly timely, but I wasn't planning to post about this at all until today when I read the full transcript of Mitt's CPAC speech. Read it. What I can't understand is how conservatives couldn't rally behind this man? Especially considering the options! And you know what? I kind of hate to say it, but I think it comes down to religion. I'm pretty sure there was a political alliance between McCain and Huckabee that definitely did damage, but I think the problem true conservatives had with Romney was that he's a Mormon. The political pundits will continue to ignore this issue, because it would be unseemly to bring it up in this "tolerant" day and age, but there is nothing else that I can think of to explain how any conservative could watch and pay attention to the CNN debate or listen to and compare McCain's speeches to Romney's and still go out and vote for McCain. Not only is a large part of the conservative base comprised of evangelicals, who are known to not like Mormons (to put it mildly), but also - I'm sure there are other Mormon's out there who know what I'm talking about when I say that (outside of Utah) - no matter what you do, you're not good enough if you're a Mormon.
As I read Romney's speech today, it made me really sad and angry (all over again) that America missed it's opportunity to elect this great man as president. I truly hope that Mitt decides to come back in 4 years and try again. Maybe by then, after the person America elects this November royally screws things up, we'll be ready to elect the best candidate - despite the fact that he's a Mormon (and not black or a woman).