Monday, December 31, 2007

Oh Those Whacky Republicans

Not to paint every Republican with the same broad brush; it is theoretically possible that there are some GOPers who (a) understand the whole separation of church and state thing and (b) acknowledge the existence of forms of religion other than Christianity.

It would be difficult to draw that distinction based on the Iowa polls, where Huck and Mitt duke it out before Thursday's caucuses. Mitt of course is Mitt Romney, the used-to-be-liberal and now died in the wool conservative Mormon former Massachusetts governor. Mitt will be damed if he'll let anybody accuse him of being a lesser Christian, just because some label his religion a cult.

Anybody? Well, Huck for one. Huck is Mike Huckabee, former Arkansas governor and Baptist minister, who has been less than warm toward Mitt's church in some of his comments along the campaign trail. ("Don't Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?").

So, things are pretty crazy in Iowa these days. The radios, TVs and newspapers are blanketed with ads from the contenders (can you name them all?)

What's at stake is, who will carry the conservative (read: bible thumping) flag against McCain/Giuliani. The theory is there will be one strong conservative and one strong centrist Republican left after South Carolina. The hand to hand combat at these early stages will be fierce.

I've been wrong so many times in presidential politics, but I have to continue to hold out hope that Republicans would rather have a strong centrist candidate than a man who carries a religious pledge into the White House.

We will all know soon enough.

WashPost with a home grown analysis, complete with scary quotes:

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