Friday, November 21, 2008

Washington Post: Ten Republicans to Watch (Including Two Mormons)

Already the political horse pickers are zeroing in on the favorites for the coming election cycle. The Washington Post listed the early Republican contenders for the political season. And 20% of the ten listed are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

From the article:

Mitt Romney: Discount the former Massachusetts governor and presidential candidate at your own peril. Romney has three big things going for him: he is, by almost anyone's account, an expert on the American economy; he is incredibly ambitious and will work harder than almost anyone to make sure his voice is heard; and he has immense personal wealth and a willingness to spend it. Do his flip-flops on social issues (and his Mormonism) still make social conservatives queasy? You bet. But Romney is in the mix and will aim to stay there.

Jon Huntsman Jr.: As The Fix was waiting to meet with Huntsman on Thursday, CNN's Wolf Blitzer was touting him as a rising star in Republican politics. Nice convergence. Huntsman won re-election earlier this month with 78 percent (granted it was in ruby red Utah) and has the looks and resume -- fluent in Chinese, progressive on the environment -- that could make him appealing for a party looking desperately for a different profile. Huntsman is a Mormon, however, and, as Mitt Romney demonstrated earlier this year, that could be a major problem if he decides to run for president.

Opposition in all things? Even as the loud public sentiment of a very vocal minority lashes out against members of the church, we see Latter-day Saints with a greater capacity for political change than ever before. How it plays out could make for a very interesting story.

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