Problems for Romney

A Rasmussen Reports survey has found that 43% of Americans would never vote for a Mormon. From the Salt Lake Tribune:

WASHINGTON - Some 43 percent of Americans wouldn't even consider voting for a Mormon for president, according to a new poll that shows an increase from previous surveys in the number of voters unwilling to support an LDS candidate for the White House.

The latest poll, released Monday, is bad news for Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, a Mormon Republican who is expected to make a 2008 presidential bid. Previous polls have shown a smaller share of Americans saying they would not vote for a Mormon presidential candidate.

The Los Angeles Times and Bloomberg in June found 37 percent of those surveyed wouldn't vote for a Mormon while other surveys from the late 1990s showed about 20 percent were opposed to a candidate from that faith.

Some 38 percent in the Rasmussen poll said they would consider voting for a Mormon, while 19 percent were unsure. Of those who identified themselves as evangelicals, 53 percent said they wouldn't consider voting for a Mormon candidate.
It's interesting that the only sub-group that is mentioned is Evangelicals. It would be interesting to see breakdowns by party affiliation, race, income, education, and region. Of course 'Evangelical' is code for 'White, socially conservative Republican' - of which only 53% would vote for a Mormon. This must scare the shit out of Romney. If this bias against people that have different ideas about God can't be overcome quickly (with either speeches, TV spots, or appropriately timed attacks on Gays) Romney's candidacy is dead in the water.

Romney has the deck stacked against him. He's running for the nomination of a party with its powerbase in the South and West when he's from the North East. This poll shows that he's looking to attract voters that are hostile to his religion. He has low name recognition and, as far as I've seen, no 'proto-platform.' He's not the 'immigration candidate' or the 'Iraq candidate' or the 'trade candidate' or the 'tax candidate' or any other 'candidate' except the 'Mormon candidate' and his base has basically rejected that.

For what it's worth, I would have no problem voting for a Mormon. I just can't imagine voting for Mitt Romney.

Here's the other part of Rasmussen's survey that I found interesting:
A potential Mormon presidential candidate fared better than one who is Muslim or an atheist running for the White House, the Rasmussen poll also found.

Some 61 percent of likely voters would not even consider voting for a Muslim presidential contender while 60 percent wouldn't vote for an atheist, the poll found.
I always knew I was unelectable... Atheism is the new gay...

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