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GrassTopsUSA Guest Commentary
By Gregg Jackson and Paul Dinger

The "RINO" (Republican In Name Only) syndrome was diagnosed at a very advanced stage by the 2006 election. But apparently we've learned nothing. And the adulation over the candidacy of Mitt Romney shows the condition is probably terminal.

"RINOism" has infected much of the conservative leadership, from evangelical leaders to Right Wing talk show hosts. Southern Baptist leader Richard Land and top conservative radio talk show hosts such as Sean Hannity speak glowingly of Romney. Two of the most popular conservative shows have become part of the liberal media glorification of Mitt. One conservative talker has written "A Mormon In The White House." He and other Republican talkers are denouncing the "ugly religious bigotry" against Romney.

What exactly are they talking about?

Before looking at the "bigotry" surrealism, there is an extremely important reason Republicans should not be hugging Romney and it has nothing to do with his religion.

Romney is the classic RINO and he was a disaster as governor of Massachusetts. If he leaves America in the same condition he left the Bay State, America will be toast by 2012.

1.  Romney tossed Massachusetts a socialist health care plan as he was walking out the door. Bernie Sanders, the only socialist congressman (and now a Member of the United States Senate), said after he got into office, a national health care plan is a tool to turn America into a socialist nation. "Romneycare" has ominous ramifications on a number of levels, not the least of which is – it will drive businesses out of state, and ruin the economy.

2.  He secretly validated gay marriage in Massachusetts, while publicly declaring he opposed it. He is on record as saying he is more pro-gay than Ted Kennedy.

3.  His reformer pose is contradicted by his "get-along" handling of the worst public works project corruption in U.S. history. "Big Dig" corruption caused a number of deaths, including that of a legal immigrant mother who was crushed by a falling cement tunnel ceiling section. Romney grandstanded about "getting to the bottom of this," but quietly took large contributions from Big Dig contractors.

4.  He returned Massachusetts to a one-party Democrat state by giving it a governor who once reported to Hillary, via Janet Reno. By abandoning his lieutenant governor, who then lost the governor's race to Hillary's man, Mitt resurrected the Dukakis era.

Mr. Smiley's private shady deals are at odds with his hygienic facade. The doublespeak press conferences, the bold hypocrisy and devious campaign to mislead show that beneath the "Reagan Republican" mask is a John Kerry flip flopper and Bill Clinton deceiver. When the liberal establishment is behind you, you're probably not a conservative. When Time, Newsweek and the New York Times look like your publicist and TV keeps pumping're a liberal.

But nothing reveals Romney's deviousness more than his "bigotry" mind control campaign. This subliminal indictment of evangelicals as bigots is made without good evidence of evangelical hate. Evangelicals don't seem to even dislike Romney. Except for angry bigotry charges by his friends in the media, where's the evangelical bigotry?

The evidence Romney's "attorneys" wave around in the court of public opinion comes from a poll, indicating most evangelicals wouldn't vote for a Mormon. The subtext of Romney's "spin" trick is 1. Mitt's another JFK (pssst – you know, that anti-Catholic thing), and 2. If you don't vote for Mitt, you're a bigot. This trick worked well with the Gullible Vote for JFK. By the way, I can't keep track. Is Mitt a Reagan Republican or a JFK Democrat? Time says his hero is Eisenhower. It's kinda like Deja Vu all over again. Remember when Hillary kept changing hairdos every other day?

A Time headline asked: "Is it sheer bigotry to say you won't vote for someone because he's a Jew? Muslim? What about a Mormon?" Okay. What about an evangelical?

Is it "sheer bigotry" that 93 percent of reporters and editors said they wouldn't vote for an evangelical?" Is it sheer bigotry that liberals are foaming-at-the-mouth "Bush-haters" because President Bush holds evangelical beliefs? A question for Time: Why don't you think evangelicals have a right to vote according to their religious beliefs? Are you saying it's "sheer bigotry" if Christians don't vote for a Muslim for president?

Since when do Americans not have the right to vote for whoever they want, according to their deeply held religious beliefs without the house organ (the media) of the state religion (Democrat Socialism) indicting them of being morally unfit to vote?

Did Romney raise the religion question to cover up his record as governor? If he did, it worked quite well. Hello. Were you aware of his record as governor? When Romney cast himself as a Reagan Republican, he injected the subject of religion into his campaign. Reagan's founding-fathers-redeemer-nation beliefs were the foundation of his politics. His religious beliefs and Romney's are completely different.

A true Reagan Conservative is someone who holds Reagan's "redeemer nation" worldview. If America's founders were alive today, they would not vote for a Mormon, because of their biblical, "city on a hill" beliefs.

The only way not voting for a Mormon becomes "bigotry" is under the Democrat religious doctrine of "tolerance," in which all religions are equally valid.

The central flaw in this doctrine is: liberals ignore it. Democrats have a half-century record of the boldest, ugliest bigotry in U.S. history. They call evangelical Christianity evil. Liberals have compared evangelicals to "Nazis" (California Governor Pat Brown in 1965) and Jihadists after 9-11 ("We have our own brand of fundamentalist terrorists!").

The U.S. media would never run an editorial titled, "Can a Mormon be President?" with the conclusion: "no." But The New York Times did run an op ed about John Ashcroft titled, "Can a deeply religious person be attorney general?" The answer of course was "no." Was that bigotry? In the surreal world of the media, the answer of course was, "no."

Time writer Nancy Gibbs speaks of the "fury" in which the "religious question" has raised itself with Romney. She's right, but the furor has been in media, not fundamentalist pulpits. Unfortunately, the only Christian they could get to demean Mormons is America's foremost bigot, Al Sharpton.

Mrs. McGillicuddy always voted for the Irish Catholic candidate in Massachusetts' politics and no talk show host accused her of being a bigot. So why is it suddenly bigotry when evangelicals want to vote for the evangelical candidate? In his famous speech before Protestant ministers, Kennedy called his religious beliefs "private." Romney publicized evangelical beliefs so he could demonize them.

Some evangelicals have always been very impressed with Mormons. If only evangelicals behaved as admirably as Mormons! But Romney's bigotry charges raise the question: do Mormons view evangelicals as bigots?

I thought this free nation gives Americans the right to vote for whomever they want without being accused of "hate." If Romney is a conservative, why is he pulling the "bigotry" card out of the liberal toolbox? It's in the same league as "hate speech" laws and the Pelosi "fairness doctrine."

The Romney campaign shows the Reagan Revolution is over, replaced by a slithery liberal Republicanism drenched in hypocrisy, blindness and cowardice. Why would the Republican Party embrace a classic RINO right after the 2006 debacle? Hello? Polls show 90 percent of Americans reject them. Has the Republican Party got the Dukakis Syndrome: they just don't get it? RINO loses. Seriously, do they want to lose?

It is astonishing to see how out of touch conservative leaders are with the American people.

Reagan revived the GOP to its greatest height since the Civil War, when it formed. Reagan's political beliefs were the Big Picture beliefs of the founding fathers – the historic American evangelical beliefs Romney calls bigotry.

Obviously the 2006 election taught the RINOcracy nothing. So for those conservatives out there who haven't drunk the Kool Aid, let's review the losing formula for 2008: RINO = GOP R.I.P.

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