Beliefnet
God-O-Meter

Bloomberg today does Mitt Romney the service of inventorying the various and sundry advice he’s being offered how to handle his Mormonism so as to maximize support from wary evangelical voters. The weightiest quote–and the reason his God-o-Meter rating is slipping–is this jab from Ralph Reed for not yet delivering a Kennedyesque speech about his religion:

“It would have been infinitely better had he been able to go to the Values Voters Summit with the speech already given,” said Ralph Reed, the former executive director of the Christian Coalition.

God-o-Meter gives special weight to Reed’s critique because he masterminded George W. Bush’s unprecedented evangelical outreach in 2004; this is his sweet spot. The other bit of advice that Bloomberg delivers is that Romney shouldn’t claim to be a Christian:

“I told him, you cannot equate Mormonism with Christianity; you cannot say, `I am a Christian just like you,”’ said Representative Bob Inglis of South Carolina, which is scheduled to hold the first primary among the Southern states. “If he does that, every Baptist preacher in the South is going to have to go to the pulpit on Sunday and explain the differences.”

Of course, these two conflicting lines of advice put Romney in a pickle. How does he candidly discuss his religion and its role in his life and prospective administration while denying such a fundamental Mormon belief as the view that Mormons are Christians? If you, dear reader, would like to share your advice, God-o-Meter is all ears.


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