A MORMON IN THE WHITE HOUSE? by Hugh Hewitt
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The Church of Jesus Christ of the Latter-Day Saints is a denomination uniquely American and, to many Americans, uniquely...peculiar. So it's no surprise that author, radio host and blogger Hugh Hewitt's new book is titled with a question: A Mormon in the White House?
This the first book on Mitt Romney, his unusual faith story and his viability as a Republican presidential candidate. It's the best possible guide to the political vision of one contender whom I expect will be in the hunt right up to the GOP Convention in Minneapolis.
Hewitt has often interviewed the conservative former governor of liberal Massachusetts and has also spoken with Romney's family and closest associates. But Hugh, a good friend of American Compass, is both a committed Evangelical and a superb political observer, and he has gone well beyond the Romney “camp” to discuss in candid conversations with some of the country's shrewdest political observers and most revered Christian leaders the pluses and minuses of Team Romney.
And already Hugh senses momentum—among Republican elites and grassroots alike. Some of the pros with whom Hugh has spoken compare Romney's political apparatus today to George Bush's organizational team in 1999. Among other things, Romney seems to be mastering the Internet, which has changed profoundly the nature of grassroots outreach. No campaign can play a waiting game these days, and Mitt's not waiting for anything or anybody. As Hugh writes:
"Governor Romney is a go everywhere, answer every question candidate, which is in sharp contrast to Senator McCain who has thus far stayed far away from new media.... Mayor Giuliani is somewhere between the two, and moving towards much greater engagement with new media in the new year. But Romney is setting the standard and this is a crucial precedent for him to set: The GOP must have a standard bearer willing and ready to use the new media environment to push not just his candidacy but the ideas that bind the party together."
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