In debate, opposing positions came down to one word: Responsibility

The question is: Does the God vote matter?  Mitt Romney’s advisers seem to think so. President Obama’s do not. For … Continued

The question is: Does the God vote matter?  Mitt Romney’s advisers seem to think so. President Obama’s do not. For the second debate, Romney has remarked that we are all children of the same God.  Obama has taken a pass. Romney has to appeal to the evangelicals, mostly Republican, who are suspicious of Mormons.  Obama has clearly decided that the 17 percent of voters who believe he is a Muslim will simply have to go on believing it.

For both of them Tuesday night, their opposing positions came down to one word: Responsibility.

A member of the audience, Barry, asked the same question of both candidates. “What do you think is the biggest misrepresentation that the American people have about you as a man or a candidate?”

Romney saw his opportunity, remote though it was, to bring up religion. “My passion,“ he said, “probably flows from the fact that I believe in God. And I believe we are all children of the same God. I believe we have a responsibility to care for one another.” That wasn’t enough. “I-I served as a  missionary for my church” he went on.” I served as a pastor in my congregation for about 10 years.”

What was fascinating was that he used the word “pastor”, a word generally used by evangelicals.  In fact, Romney was a “bishop” in his church.

“I’ve sat across the table from people who were out of work and worked with them to try and find new work or to help them through tough times,” he continued.

That’s where he should have stopped. But he chose to remind the millions of viewers of his unfortunate, and, he now concedes, “wrong” statement that 47 percent of Americans don’t take responsibility for themselves.  “I care about 100 percent of the American people,” he said.

Obama looked at that moment like he truly believed in God.

“I believe Governor Romney is a good man,” he said, sympathetically.” Loves his family, cares about his faith. But I also believe that when he said behind closed doors that 47 percent of the country considered themselves as victims who refuse personal responsibility, think who he was talking about.”  Obama went on to mention those on social security, veterans and students. He didn’t even have to quote Jesus Christ’s admonition to care for “the least of these,” as he has done before. It was implicit.

President Obama has made a choice. He is forcing Romney take responsibility for his remarks about the 47 percent, he is defending the 47 percent, by denying that they don’t take responsibility, and he is offering to take responsibility for those who can’t take it for themselves.  

He’s leaving God to Romney. Let’s see if it works.

About

Sally Quinn Sally Quinn is the founding editor of OnFaith.
  • getcentered

    Mitt Romney and Republicans think they can score some votes by exploiting the tragedy of what happened to our embassy in Libya. Romney seeks to instill cynicism in voters when it should be a reason for Americans to stand together, a unifying force.

    When terrorists attacked our country on 9/11, in the aftermath we watched our country rise in unison, and together started the long process of healing. People of all walks of life woke up that next morning with the understanding that our country, the greatest experiment in Democracy and freedom, was in under attack from extremists who have no understanding of what it is to be free. In their attacks on 9/11 the terrorists tried to break our sacred union. America did not go around barking blame at President Bush. President Bush stood up to lift us up and we in turn stood with him.

    When we send soldiers into battle we do so with the knowledge that some many not return. We send warriors of freedom into hostile territories knowing full well that we can not stop every bullet. That the price we pay with our lives is what deserves the highest of honor and respect.

    But, America’s warriors of freedom don’t always wear camouflage. Some of them act in our countries best interest as servants of diplomacy in embassies all over the Earth. They go into sometimes hostile country knowing full well the dangers around them, they know full well that although we may not be able to stop every bullet the mission and country they serve will honor them with the respect and dignity deserving of any fallen soldier.

    I believe the United States is a global force for good, and in the battle to make the world a better place some of our warriors will pay the ultimate price, even sometimes the ones that don’t wear camouflage.

    You Republicans trying to score political points off a death of an honorable man; a man of country? Are you people plain evil? Have you no shame?

  • Dixie Suzan Davis

    getcentered – This article uses the word responsibility. Regarding the Libyan Consulate where 4 Americans were killed by mobs, Secretary of State Hilary Clinton has said she is responsible. Are there consequences for those responsible or must one merely say your responsible and that is it? The evidence is that there was plenty of warnings, plenty of requests for more security, and by the way the money was there to do it with. Hilary Clinton says she is responsible for getting 4 American killed. Is this a display of evil? Does this mean her Christmas bonus check will be slightly reduced this year? Will her personnel folder contain a short note of remonstrance for this? What are the consequences in law??? Or is ther none?

  • Secular1

    DSD where was your eloquence when your heart throb Bush 43 took us to war in Iraq and Afghanistan. Where thousands of our citizens and at least 300,000 of Iraqis got killed. Do you think his bonus check got dinged. As I observed you are bat crap crazy.

Read More Articles

shutterstock_186364295
This God’s For You: Jesus and the Good News of Beer

How Jesus partied with a purpose.

egg.jpg
Jesus, Bunnies, and Colored Eggs: An Explanation of Holy Week and Easter

So, Easter is a one-day celebration of Jesus rising from the dead and turning into a bunny, right? Not exactly.

shutterstock_186566975
Hey Bart Ehrman, I’m Obsessed with Jesus, Too — But You’ve Got Him All Wrong

Why the debate over Jesus’ divinity matters.

SONY DSC
Dear Evangelicals, Please Reconsider Your Fight Against Gay Rights

A journalist and longtime observer of American religious culture offers some advice to his evangelical friends.

shutterstock_186090179
How Passover Makes the Impossible Possible

When we place ourselves within the story, we can imagine new realities.

shutterstock_186795503
The Three Most Surprising Things Jesus Said

Think you know Jesus? Some of his sayings may surprise you.

shutterstock_185995553
How to Debate Christians: Five Ways to Behave and Ten Questions to Answer

Advice for atheists taking on Christian critics.

HIFR
Heaven Hits the Big Screen

How “Heaven is for Real” went from being an unsellable idea to a bestselling book and the inspiration for a Hollywood movie.

This Passover, We’re Standing at an Unparted Red Sea

We need to ask ourselves: What will be the future of the State of Israel — and what will it require of us?

pews
Just As I Am

My childhood conversion to Christianity was only the first of many.

shutterstock_127731035 (1)
Are Single People the Lepers of Today’s Church?

In an age of rising singlehood, many churches are still focused on being family ministry centers.

2337221655_c1671d2e5e_b
Mysterious Tremors

People like me who have mystical experiences may be encountering some unknown Other. What can we learn about what that Other is?

bible
Five Bible Verses You Need to Stop Misusing

That verse you keep quoting? It may not mean what you think it means.

csl_wall_paper
What C.S. Lewis’ Marriage Can Tell Us About the Gay Marriage Controversy

Why “welcome and wanted” is a biblical response to gay and lesbian couples in evangelical churches.