Examine these consecutive paragraphs in Romney’s speech:
“There is one fundamental question about which I often am asked. What do I believe about Jesus Christ? I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of mankind. My church’s beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history. These are not bases for criticism but rather a test of our tolerance. Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree.
“There are some who would have a presidential candidate describe and explain his church’s distinctive doctrines. To do so would enable the very religious test the founders prohibited in the Constitution. No candidate should become the spokesman for his faith. For if he becomes President he will need the prayers of the people of all faiths.”
Marc Ambinder, writing for The Atlantic.com, finds it odd that Romney makes a claim that a presidential candidate ought not to be the spokesman of his faith immediately after….making a specific statement about his faith. In a sense, the second paragraph is invalidated by the first. (I previously posted David Frum’s astute observation.)
I agree with Ross Douthat: “….for Romney to say that candidates shouldn’t have to answer theological questions just moments before declaring ‘I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of mankind’ seems like something of a contradiction.”