Understanding Mitt Romney’s Gay Politics Like ‘Kremlinology’

FrostyRomneyWith the back-and-forth between Mitt Romney's campaign and the Log Cabin Republicans on ENDA and the gay group's endorsement of the GOP presidential hopeful, Ben Adler reminds readers of the essential truth about Romney's LGBT politics: they're contortionistic. Or, put another way, he's blowing smoke.

In an article at The Nation called "Romney Flails on Gay Rights", Adler writes, "Given how Romney is trying to carefully balance appeals to social moderates by presenting himself as opposed to discrimination without taking a stand on any actual legislation, figuring out his position on ENDA is turning into Kremlinology", the art of reading the USSR's Cold War policies.

The politics of gay rights are forcing Romney to perform these feats of contortion. Put broadly, his religious right base opposes civil rights for gays across the board, while a majority of the public supports them, except for marriage, on which the public is roughly evenly divided. As a general election candidate that makes Romney’s optimal position supportive of all gay rights except marriage. But that would alienate his base. (Since Romney has virtually no known actual principles on anything, the only relevant factors here are his political incentives.)

On a related note — Romney's relationship with a "minority" group, in this case women: the former Massachusetts governor has caught up with President Obama among that coveted group. The president once had a 16-point lead, but now Romney has 47% of likely female voters and Obama has only 45%.