Super Tuesday’s primary results proved only that the Republican race will go on. Former Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney won six states, his major challenger Rick Santorum, three and Newt Gingrich carried Georgia, his home state. Romney’s narrow victory margin in Ohio and what critics perceive as an unimpressive Virginia win over Ron Paul when the ballot only had their two names assures that, as of today, the ultimate outcome remains up in the air. [Battle in Ohio Reinforces GOP Divide, by Mark Z. Barabak, Los Angeles Times, March 7, 2012]
Some raise the possibility of a brokered convention in Tampa Bay August 27-30 for the first time since 1952. Sixty years ago Adlai Stevenson on the third ballot won the Democratic nomination over Tennessee Senator Estes Kefauver. GOP Consultant Karl Rove has a funny line about brokered conventions. Rove says that life on Pluto is more likely. Nevertheless, and hard to believe though it is, odds makers have established a wagering line, 4-1 against; in other words, improbable but far from impossible.
November will boil down, as it always disappointingly does, to the Democratic candidate who is terrible on immigration and related non-immigrant visas which displace American workers or the Republican, good on immigration but also opposed to woman’s right to choose. This dichotomy presents the patriot immigration reform community with a disappointing but unavoidable conundrum.
The recent dust up between the Roman Catholic Church and President Obama is an example. Last month, when Obama wanted to impose a mandate on employers including Roman Catholic institutions to cover birth control, bishops and other high ranking church officials in unison rebelled. Among its other objections, the church said that Obama’s position violates freedom of religion.
Since the administration’s initial announcement, Obama has offered “an accommodation” compromise to Catholics saying that nonprofit religious-affiliated organizations such as hospitals and universities would be exempt from the requirement in his health-care law that says contraception must be included in all health-insurance plans.[Obama Shift on Contraception Splits Critics, by Laurie Goodstein, New York Times, February 14, 2012]
No matter what the ultimate outcome may be, one thing is clear: President Obama, although he could not be worse on immigration, strongly favors birth control.
On the other hand Santorum, a Catholic father of seven, is on the record as against any type of birth control even when used by married couples. When pressed, Santorum indicated that he thinks states should have the right to ban birth control pills and condoms if they want to.
Romney’s birth control position is harder to ferret out. The variable is when he was asked about it. In her extensive Boston Globe story, reporter Tracy Jan detailed Romney’s shifting views. Jan’s story includes this paragraph:
“The series of events in 2005 involved several legal and political turns at a time when Romney was shifting from moderate positions on social issues he had taken when running for governor to prepare to run for president in a Republican Party that is far to the right of the Bay State electorate.” [Romney’s Contraception Stance Has Changed Since 2005, by Tracy Jan, Boston Globe, February 3, 2012]
Primaries remain in several key states including New York, New Jersey Illinois, Pennsylvania, Texas and California. The Republican candidate may not be known until June 5, the date Texas and California vote.