The Big Lie: President Obama wants “take God off our coins.”
The Truth: Mitt Romney is using an invented attack in order ease fears about his religion and to agitate fears about the president’s faith.
During the Democratic National Convention, just one story interested the right wing press: “The Democrats booed God!” They were referring to an impromptu vote on the Democratic platform’s mention of God and a plank recognizing Jerusalem as the capital of the Jewish state. The voice vote was close and the chair accepted the “yeas” without any further consideration. The crowd booed.
This fictional booing of God was the headline of the Drudge Report on the day after Bill Clinton’s now-classic convention speech was the headline in most of reality. The convention was doomed! Or so the right claimed, because of those boos. A week later, the President is up by more than three percent in the Real Clear Politics average and by five percent in Gallup’s daily tracking poll.
As this bounce began to take flight, Mitt Romney decided to take the apocryphal Democratic razzing of the Almighty to a new level. Over the weekend he added a new refrain to his stump speech. “That pledge says ‘under God,’ and I will not take God out of our platform,” Romney told a crowd in Virginia Beach. “I will not take God off our coins, and I will not take God out of my heart.” Conan O’Brien wondered how Romney knew what a coin is.
Recognizing that no one outside of the right wing faux-outrage machine can summon much (or any) outrage about language in a party platform, Romney tried to make the issue concrete by suggesting that there is a concerted effort in America to remove “In God We Trust” from United States currency.
The Obama campaign responded, “The president believes as much that God should be taken off a coin as he does that aliens will attack Florida.”
Romney has continued to make his pointless assertion about not taking God out of his platform or his heart – and leaving the coinage part out. This raises the question: Why – if Mitt Romney supposedly wants to make this election strictly about the economy – is he invoking God?
The answer reveals both the weakness of Mitt’s campaign and the cravenness he now regularly displays.