aired Jan. 14, 2012 on Dave’s Gone By. Youtube clip: Mitt Romney
Shalom Dammit! This is Rabbi Sol Solomon with a Rabbinical Reflection for the week of January 15th, 2012.
At the time of this writing, Mitt Romney is the front-runner in the race for Republican Presidential candidate. This is exciting because three weeks ago, Newt Gingrich was the front-runner in the race. Three weeks before that it was Rick Perry, and before that it was Herman Cain the schvartze, before that it was Michelle Bachmann the cuckoo-head, and before that I think it was Danny Bonaduce, and Ted Bundy, and Jayne Mansfield, and the guy who punches himself in the head outside Caribou Coffee. I think Spongebob was in there somewhere, too. And who knows, in three more weeks, we might have another non-Rom in the red-state sweepstakes.
Not that I’m complaining. The longer Republicans can’t figure out what they want, the less time they’ll have to mount a conservative, Christian-based attack on the White House. Not that I love Obama so much but gevalt! If this is the best the Republicans can do after four years, it makes you understand how they settled on the Bush family two decades ago. I wonder if Dick Cheney was sitting in a think tank going, “Okay, we can either have George and George Dubya or… – what? The Menendez Brothers? The Lohans? Does Charlie Manson have any kids?”
Seriously, in politics, what rises to the top is either debris, like Sarah Palin, or an oil slick, like Perry and Romney. It’s a shame, but if you float on the surface, you wash over those who dive deeper.
But here’s what I don’t get. In the Iowa Caucus held two weeks ago, Mitt Romney topped Rick Santorum by eight votes. That’s out of 60,000 votes cast between them. Less than 4,000 votes behind was Ron Paul. In other words, out of nearly a hundred thousand votes cast, less than 4000 votes separated Romney, Santorum and Paul. And yet, a day later, Mitt Romney was all but coronated as the runaway winner.
Now let me be clear: I’d be happy to see Rick Santorum’s bible thumping lead to his quick exodus, and I don’t trust Ron Paul, who never met an embryo he didn’t like or a homosexual he did. But how did a statistical tie and virtual threeway – and not the good kind of virtual threeway you see on Redtube – how did this dead heat immediately become a landslide win for mighty Mitt? Is it because the Republicans did not want to spend millions fighting a battle they figured Romney would eventually win anyway? Is it because everyone in both parties is shaking in their boots over Ron Paul, because like him or not, he’s the only real game changer? Or is it simply because Mitt Romney looks like the privileged son of Ronald Reagan and George Hamilton, and thinks like the privileged son of Ronald Reagan and Max Headroom?
Barring an economic collapse between now and November, Barack Obama has a strong shot at another four years. So maybe the real story of the GOP is, “look, we run Romney now, go easy on the war chest, so we can bring out the big guns in 2016.” Of course, by current Republican standards, the big gun could be Fred Phelps or Jack van Impe.
As a liberal, and as a middle-aged man jealous of anyone with a full head of hair, I can’t see voting for Romney. But if you’re not going to support him, please don’t support him for the right reasons. It bothers me when people say Romney is unelectable simply because he’s a Mormon. It’s like a dirty word; it’s like voodoo to some people. “Ooh, he must be crazy because he believes in a crazy religion.” As if Judaism and Christianity weren’t based on fairy tales and sanctimony. Not to mention sanctimonious fairy tales.
Look, if you’ve ever stayed in a Marriott or watched the BYU Cougars in the NCAA, you know that crazy does not mean incompetent. And as a Jew, I also feel a kinship with the Mormons. We both believe in rules written on giant tablets. We both wear amusing undergarments. (Mine happen to have yellow stains on the front, but that’s not religion, that’s prostatitis.) We both think there’s something to be said for having one god and many wives. And finally, we both believe that the United States of America is a magnificent and even blessed place. Or at least it was until the last gang of Republicans got through with it.
So if the 2012 G.O.P. candidate for president is, indeed, going to be Mitt Romney, I wish him a clean, fair, exciting and losing battle. Not that I wish him ill, but it’s the quickest path to his obvious true calling: future game-show host on Fox. Hey, if he were up against Santorum on CBN and Michelle Bachman on “Bridezillas” he’d get my vote. Just, not against Ron Paul on Public Access.
This has been a Rabbinical Reflection from Rabbi Sol Solomon, Temple Sons of Bitches.
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