It’s funny how small the world is. This morning, a blog post from the Rev. Rob Schenck–a conservative evangelical whose ministry to Capitol Hill I believe my mother-in-law has supported for years–popped onto my screen. It’s well said:
That’s a question I’m asked a lot these days. I presume it’s because most of the people that ask find him an appealing presidential candidate, but they also worry about his being a Mormon.
I’ll give a quick answer—then elaborate.
I think a lot of Mitt Romney. I definitely find him a very appealing candidate—and I don’t worry a bit about him being Mormon.
These are not simply gut reactions. I have good and well-developed reasons for both positions. If you care to know more, read on:
First, I traveled with the 2008 Romney presidential campaign. (As I did with other candidates.) Seeing the Romney operation up close, I was more than impressed. It was the best-run political machine, period. I saw the Obama operation up close. I saw Huckabee. I saw McCain. Nothing came close to Romney’s. The professionalism, discipline, organization, and quality of people that surrounded Romney were simply superb.
Second, I saw the Romneys themselves up close and personal. I saw them behind the scenes—even had a glimpse at their private family life. They are a big, loving, utterly devoted family. They struggle with everything any other family struggles with, but they are completely committed to one another. As an evangelical, I’ll admit it—we have a lot to learn about family life from our Mormon friends!…
There is a final reason I find Mitt Romney appealing, notwithstanding the brouhaha over his healthcare initiative in Massachusetts while he was governor there. It seems Mitt Romney is a man for our times. He is first of all a deeply moral man, committed to his (one and only) wife of 42 years, devoted to his five sons and to his multitudinous grandkids! As far as I observed, he meets and exceeds what are commonly deemed to be Christian virtues. He is also very self-disciplined. And—here’s the big one—he’s kind of neither a “conservative,” nor a “liberal.” He’s a fiscal disciplinarian—what I personally think the country needs, right now. (Not to mention an enormously successful business developer and owner.)Oh, I’ve grilled him face-to-face on the sanctity of life and marriage, and he passes those tests with me, but let’s face it, this isn’t yesterday, it’s today. Young voters—Tea Party members—and so many others aren’t defining themselves politically like they used to. Whoever the 2012 candidates are, they’re going to have to appeal across the partisan divides or they won’t win. I’m convinced that Mitt Romney will be one that can make that reach.
This is not an endorsement of Mitt Romney for president. It’s simply an explanation of why I think that wouldn’t be a bad idea.