If You Believe In Equality, Romney Is Not Your Man

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Romney used to be an ally, but when he wanted to become president it all changed.As a child I was a big fan of the Republican Party, sort of in the way that people root for a sports team like the Dodgers.  And that’s how it was till 2004 when George W Bush strategist Karl Rove decided to make use of discrimination to help his client’s electoral chances in over 10 states by backing efforts to stop same sex couples from having equal marriage rights. I see no reason why the Log Cabin Republicans, who rightly declined to endorse Bush’s second term, have decided to endorse Romney at the last minute this year.

I held my nose in 2004 and even in 2008 when McCain decided to throw raw meat from the balcony by adding Sarah Palin to his ticket. But this time, the first time since I registered to vote in 1998, I cannot vote for my political party’s nominee for president. Mitt Romney used to be a decent choice and now he has lain down with dogs in his quest to obtain power. I’ve known Romney could not be trusted ever since Meg Whitman’s 2010 California gubernatorial campaign.

It’s not just LGBT issues that cause me to be disgusted about Mitt Romney. My decision to support Libertarian Party candidate Gary Johnson is partly based on my support equality for all Americans even for those who are not heterosexual or do not fit gender norms, but there’s more than that as well.  President Obama and Mitt Romney both believe in the individual mandate, which makes health care more expensive for those who buy their own insurance or those who do not need insurance.  Both candidates believe in the NDAA which supports indefinite detention of Americans, the war against marijuana, the much-loathed TSA and the Patriot Act.

The National Organization for Marriage, which was brought forth by Proposition 8, has created a candidate pledge against marriage equality, and I’ve made it a personal crusade to fight against any candidate who signs their pledge. Romney did sign this NOM pledge – what does that mean?

  • One, it means he’s promised to fight to get a Federal Marriage Amendment enshrining discrimination into our constitution.
  • Two, it means he’s promised to appoint anti-gay federal judges to make sure that LGBT people do not get equal protection under the law.
  • Three, he must defend DOMA (the Defense of Marriage Act) in court, a defense that is already failing with the inept help of  Boehner’s Congressional Republicans.
  • Four, establish a presidential commission on religious liberty to make sure the side advocating for discrimination gets extra protections under the law.
  • Lastly, make sure that residents of District of Columbia can have the ability to vote on repealing marriage equality there.

I find people like American Foundation for Equal Rights attorney Ted Olson, part of the bipartisan legal duo fighting Proposition 8, DELUSIONAL for supporting Romney. Fine, I can respect that Romney may be great on the majority of issues Ted believes in, but he will create more obstacles in Ted’s case. It would be like running a marathon with both shoes tied together. It would have been better for homo conservatives and their straight allies to support Gary Johnson instead of Romney in states such as California and Illinois so we can teach the Republican Party a lesson that they need someone that supports equality in 2016.

Romney used to be great on equality; it helped him in his campaign for US Senate against Ted Kennedy in 1994. Many of us thought he would have been a great ally on our side, but now he became our opponent. People thought Senator Kerry was a flip-flopper, but Mitt Romney flip-flops better than a figure skater on many issues not just LGBT equality, in the same way as he used to advocate for abortion rights and even invested in a firm that processed the aborted unborn from abortions, but now talks hardcore pro-life.

It might be a great advancement for Mitt Romney to support such reforms as the Employment Non Discrimination Act, but the rhetoric used in his campaign makes me very reluctant to trust him. If he really intends to overturn the Obama executive order allowing for hospital visitation for same sex couples, the magic 8-ball says NOT LIKELY regarding other equality reforms being considered in a future congressional session or Romney’s executive office. Even if Romney sincerely wants to support the Employment Non Discrimination Act, he is not likely to do so because he does not want to depress his homophobic base voters.  Also, to put it bluntly, it’s very difficult for any rational person to trust Mitt Romney.

I obviously do not wear the rose-colored glasses that the Log Cabin Republicans wear when they look at this candidate. I do understand that they want to retain their clout in the Republican Party however minimal that may be, but I am honestly more scared about the possibility of Romney becoming President than I am of four more years of Obama. I am NOT encouraging people to vote for Obama, instead I want people to LIVE FREE and vote for Gary Johnson for President.

About Matt Munson