Is Romney for real?

Mitt has innovative ideas and a clean background, but his Mormon faith may hold him back?

One of the many Republican presidential candidates, Mitt Romney, decided to take time out of his busy schedule to answer questions on a sunny, southern California afternoon . At Chapman University on Sunday, Sept. 23, Romney held an open question microphone session for supporters and opponents.

After two speeches by he and his wife, Ann, Romney opened up the floor to the attendees. Questions ranged from health care to the war in Iraq. Aside from the disrespectful joke of, “If you won the presidency, how many first wives would there be?” and the ranting and raving of a veteran from the Vietnam War, the Q & A went flawlessly.

What makes Romney’s session special is that these questions and answers were not rehearsed. Given his conversational skills, he was able to answer every question thrown his way. Sure, he’s answered the same questions over and over because of all the forums he has been to, but he listened intently to everybody’s question and answered with eye contact. He definitely appears to be a man who cares.

Romney is a genuine candidate for the Republican nomination. As a businessman (he was a CEO at a leading management consulting firm), he is knowledgeable about the economy, and his plan for health care is impeccable.

Rather than leaving it up to the government to raise taxes for everyone to give everyone health care, he plans to support private insurance groups and enact a smaller government role when it comes to health care. He is not ignoring the issue at hand; rather, he has a different way to solve the problem. He has done the research and knows that a universal, governmental health care system is not a good plan, due to the high taxes as well as poorer medical care that would come with it.

Romney seems to be the perfect fit for the Republican candidate, yet there is one thing that holds him back. As you may know, Romney is a member of the Church of Latter-day Saints, a.k.a. a Mormon. Could a Mormon be the next president of the United States?

Given his Mormon background, he is a great family man (one wife) with five sons. He has a great background because he never experimented with drugs or alcohol in his earlier years, unlike President George W. Bush (alcohol) or presidential hopeful Barack Obama (D-IL).

So we, as Christians, have a dilemma. If Romney, the former governor from Massachusetts, wins the primaries and becomes the Republican hopeful, should we vote for him? What about the possibility of a ticket that includes the former governor from Arkansas, Mike Huckabee? Huckabee is a Baptist minister who has played the role of the “dark horse” in the race for the White House. He quietly placed second in the Iowa caucuses (First place went to Romney.) A Mormon-Baptist minister ticket for the Republicans could be the way to beat the Democrats.

After listening to Romney, there is no doubt that he knows his stuff. But the question really becomes if his Mormon faith will pull him down.

It is the dilemma of choosing “the lesser of two evils.” For some people, that sure sounds like the presidential election four years ago.

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