November 12, 2007
As we are nearing the 50-day mark in advance of the Iowa caucuses, and with Mitt Romney as the GOP front runner in Iowa, New Hampshire and South Carolina, it is to be expected that those who oppose the governor would come out of the woodwork. My only wish is that they would do so with more transparency, much more honesty, and a greater understanding of what’s at stake if the clearest option to an Obama or a Clinton ticket does not receive the nomination.
Brian Camenker of MassResistance.org is a person for whom I’ve helped raise awareness, bringing broader attention to the unseemly agenda of radical gay activists imposed on children in the Massachusetts public school system. Sandy Rios is a broadcast colleague of AM 1160 WYLL in Chicago, but more than that she is someone I once worked for, someone I have deep respect for and someone I consider a genuine friend. Gregg Jackson is an author who also hosts a Sunday evening talk show in Boston.
But my heart is heavy at the less-than-genuine approach each of them have chosen in their attempt to influence voters against Governor Mitt Romney.
The basis of much of their criticism of the former governor has to do with his past record. Understandably, we look at someone’s past positions, qualifications, decisions made and actions taken in order to determine that candidate’s abilities and character. Certainly the governor’s record is fair game ... but with one small caveat added.
If someone is going to compare a candidate’s positions today to a seemingly-contradictory record in the past, it is important and only fair to hear the candidate’s explanation. The problem with all three of these Romney critics—who are focusing their message at the Values Voters of America—is that they have not taken the time to do so, at least not publicly.
In refusing to do so they present the debate without context, and so unveil a fairly one-sided discussion about Romney’s detailed history based on news reports, press clippings and of course their own opinions and impressions (all of which they are entitled to).
But it comes up short on journalistic integrity.
So what is the story on Romney’s positions on abortion and the redefining of marriage to include homosexual unions?
I’m glad someone finally asked.
No, not me ... the voters. The “Ask Mitt Anything” initiative put the former governor before room after room of voters. Any question they had, any curiosity they needed an answer to—he was asked. Traditional marriage and his pro-life policy conversion were two of the most asked questions the governor dealt with on the tour. To say that his position in 2004 or 1994 contradicts his present day answers is a legitimate point to bring up.
But the key question is, “Why?”
There are some points of fact that the critics have also refused to consider.
For instance, if critics wish to be “rule of law” conservatives—as is demonstrated by each of their beliefs that Roe v. Wade must be overturned—they cannot hold the expectation that the governor should have assumed super-executive-branch powers and unconstitutionally instructed the Massachusetts legislature to ignore the Supreme Court’s ruling. That would be executive branch tyranny—even if it was done in an attempt to override judicial branch activism. The proper recourse for the 70 percent of Massachusetts voters who disagree with the redefinition of marriage through judicial fiat is to do so through the electoral process—something Romney encouraged and attempted to help lead the way in.
It is also important to point out that not one of Camenker, Rios or Jackson have acknowledged Romney’s strong consistent support for the Federal Marriage Amendment. Nor have they acknowledged the fact that, as the governor revealed on my show, he would look for the input of those like Dr. James Dobson in his administration as further attacks against the family and child arise in our future.
The critics have also remained silent on the recently-announced (at the Value Voters Summit in Washington D.C.—evidently skipped over by Romney critics) initiative by potential first lady Ann Romney, where she focuses expressly on the issue of getting young people to marry before giving birth to children. That’s a goal even these critics would not disagree with.
They also seem to be short on actions of recourse for what their one-sided debate leaves Values Voters to do. In Rios’ monologue on Romney, housed at Camenker’s Web site—she goes so far as to imply that the aggressively pro-abortion, pro-gay, pro-illegal-alien, anti-gun, tax- indifferent, sanctuary-city-defending, horrific-judicial-record, cross-dressing former Mayor of New York would be a more ideal option—because he openly embraces those deficiencies. Jackson and Camenker offered no real clues as to who they would likely support.
In the early stages of the campaign I read Hugh Hewitt’s “A Mormon in the White House?” based upon intense hours of interviews with the former governor. What it gave me was context for who the man is. It clearly laid out how his conversion on the issue of life took place in his public policy (quite similar, in fact, to Ronald Reagan). Even the fact that legendary conservative thinker Paul Weyrich—who had originally thrown in with Camenker, Rios and Jackson—has reversed course demonstrates that there is more to these issues than Romney critics have been willing to address.
My encouragement to Romney’s critics is to follow their conscience and obviously vote their beliefs. Yet as your attempt to influence others in the process unfolds, my strong encouragement to each of you is to do so with more transparency, much more honesty, and a greater understanding of what’s at stake. Since all three are Christians, we all know and understand that it is part of our duty to love one another in truth.
It is also our duty to speak truth.
And one who does not allow both sides of the story to be told is in essence only telling half the story, and half-truths are in fact not truth at all.
Kevin McCullough is the host of “The MuscleHead Revolution” radio program, heard daily in New York City on WMCA 570 at 2pm ET. He’s the author of “MuscleHead Revolution: Overturning Liberalism with Commonsense Thinking” and regular blogger at www.muscleheadrevolution.com. Contact Kevin at [email protected].