STEVEN JONAS for BUZZFLASH AT TRUTHOUT
Well, Governor Romney seems well on his way to garnering the GOP nomination for the Presidency. It is hard to see how his quest could be derailed at this point, even by the revelation in the Washington Post that he bullied prep school classmates that he thought were gay. He acknowledged that he was involved in such "high jinks and pranks," but he had "no idea that this person might have been gay." (Sort of like Clinton and marijuana and "I didn't inhale." But that is another matter.) So, in this space we ask Governor Romney questions that might not otherwise be asked by journalists:
1. You have had significant experience in running a company that made its money (and still does, and you still benefit from its profitability) by closing down, downsizing, and exporting jobs from various companies. You are proud of that experience, in fact, because you made a lot of money doing it. How does such experience qualify you to "rescue an economy," an economy that has been trashed by corporate closures, downsizing, and the export of jobs?
2. Treason is generally defined as engaging in one or more acts designed to overthrow the sovereign power of one's own nation. It is also defined as consorting with the enemy in wartime (such as Prescott Bush's bank did with Germany, until February, 1942, when it was forced to stop by President Roosevelt under the threat of criminal prosecution). In this country, it is a crime that carries the death penalty. Of course Ann Coulter, in her 2003 book Treason, had another definition: In general terms, anyone who did not support US policy during the whole of the Cold War (generally "liberals") was a traitor. What is your understanding of the term? Whatever it is, do you agree with the woman who recently asked you if you thought that President Obama should be tried for treason?
3. You have said that one plank of your platform will be to propose the enactment of a Constitutional Amendment banning monogamous marriage equality. Presumably your position on this matter is based on statements about homosexual sexual relations in both the standard Christian Bible and the Book of Mormon. In fact, it appears that all of the organizations that oppose marriage equality for same-sex couples base their positions on various interpretations of Biblical passages. Your church was the major mover behind the campaign in California to pass "Proposition 8," which bans marriage equity. In fact, your PAC was a funder of that campaign, although it tried to keep that fact quiet at the time. Is it thus safe to assume that you are against the principle of separation of church and state?
4. Since you hold to the definition of marriage as "between one man and one woman," do you believe that the "fundamentalist," polygamist Mormons living in the far rural reaches of Utah, and several neighboring states, should be prosecuted and that the institution of polygamy should be shut down once and for all?
5. You supported the passage of the so-called "Personhood Amendment," proposed to the voters of Mississippi (and defeated fairly soundly by them). It holds that life begins at the time of fertilization. Will a plank to make some form of the "Personhood Amendment" a part of the Federal Constitution be part of your platform?
6. One of your recent endorsers, former Sen. Rick Santorum, has referred to the science behind our understanding of global warming and its threat to humanity and many of the Earth's species as "punk science." Do you agree with that statement?
7. Sen. Santorum has also compared homosexual intercourse to "bestiality," and would outlaw it if he could. What is your take on that position?
8. Sen. Santorum has also said the President John F. Kennedy's famous speech on the separation of church and state makes him "want to vomit." Do you too need to take Dramamine before looking at the text of that speech?
9. Another one of your recent endorsers, former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, has
said, among other things, "I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over
the nature of America, by the time [my grandchildren] are my age they will be in a secular
atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists." What is your take on that statement?
10. Mr. Gingrich has also proposed that "drug smugglers" (however one might define that term) should be executed. Where do you stand on that statement and on the Drug War in general?
11. Yet another endorser of your candidacy is Gov. Rick Perry of Texas, who is also well-known in his state as a lay preacher. Last year he issued an official proclamation for a statewide "Days of Prayer for Rain" (three of them, which happened to go unanswered). Do you believe in the power of prayer to bring about such natural occurrences as rain? Did you ever try something like it when you were Governor of Massachusetts?
12. Finally, by far the largest single item in the Federal budget is military spending. If the primary problem facing the nation is the Federal deficit, would you propose to cut military spending or would you increase military spending, while cutting taxes further?