In the end, I think the “Faith in America” speech will be a net positive for Romney, but perhaps not in the way everybody is expecting. In response to Kathryn Jean Lopez’s prediction that the speech will be “heavy on religous liberty,” Ramesh Ponnuru writes that “the case that voters shouldn’t hold his Mormonism against him is not the same as the case for religious liberty, and it would be a big mistake for him to suggest that people who hold reservations about electing a Mormon president are hostile to religious liberty.” I don’t actually think this will end up being about winning voters who are uncomfortable with the idea of electing a Mormon president. The speech will be heavily covered on the news and he’ll be touching on the themes of religious liberty and tolerance that are among the founding principles of our nation. He’ll likely come off as a pretty decent guy, talking about how great America is, and some undecided voters will warm up to him. It just may not be the demographic of undecided voters that everybody is talking about (evangelicans who are suspicious of Mormonism).
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