Mitt Romney and Mormon Studies

Anxious Bench | 1/3/2019 | Staff
hubbog (Posted by) Level 3
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Mitt Romney has done more than just about anyone else (save my Doktorvater) for my career.

By coming close to the Republican nomination in 2008 and then being the presumptive nominee for the next four years, Romney made Mormon Studies great. The creators of The Book of Mormon: The Musical also deserve ample credit, but the man from Michigan Massachusetts Utah enhanced popular interest in his religion just in time for my first book on the subject.

People - Mitt - Romney - Doubt - New

Some people wondered whether or not Mitt Romney was a Christian. I had no doubt about it. The New Testament encouraged him to become “all things to all men,” and Romney gamely tried his best to do so. Pro-choice when running for office in Massachusetts? Severely conservative when securing the GOP nomination, fending off heavyweights such as Rick Santorum? Forcing the citizens of Massachusetts to buy health insurance, and then promising to stop forcing other Americans to do the same? That may sound like criticism, but a politician’s first order of business is to get elected, so tacking one way and then another is sort of the job description.

Back in 2012, I did my best to get my benefactor over the hump in Virginia. I attended a Romney campaign rally on my campus. I even clapped. Many of my Latter-day Saint historian friends did not like Mitt Romney and made that plain. I couldn’t believe their selflessness. I knew that a Romney win would guarantee eight years of semi-popular interest in the things I was currently studying.

Hero - Near-majority - Americans - Free-loaders - Government

And then my hero let me down. He claimed that a near-majority of Americans were free-loaders and just wanted the government to support them. That created a more narrow path to victory. He couldn’t decide whether to publicly talk about his religion or not. His wasn’t a bad campaign,...
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