COLUMN: Ask questions before voting
I am originally from Cape Cod, Massachusetts and I am familiar with Romney’s stances and political policies during his time as governor. I thought he might actually get my vote in the 2012 election. However, I came to quickly realize during this campaign that he has changed his policies and viewpoints to fit the audience from which he is seeking favor. One of the most important issues Mitt Romney has taken a 180 degree turn on is GLBT rights.
During this election, Romney has stated over and over he believes marriage should remain between one man and one woman. If we take a look at his 1994 campagn for Senate against Ted Kennedy, we can see how he has changed this stance in order to satisfy the opinions of the Republican party that he is depending on in this election.
During his 1994 campaign, Romney stated in a letter to the Log Cabin Club of Massachusetts - a gay and lesbian political rights group from which he was gaining support- something uncharacteristic. After many discussions and interactions with gay and lesbian voters in the state of Massachusetts, he was ‘more convinced than ever before that as we seek to establish full equality for America's gay and lesbian citizens, [he would] provide more effective leadership than [his] opponent" in relation to gay rights. Romney asserted "we must make equality for gays and lesbians a mainstream concern," further confirming, "I can and I will."
This "I can and I will" catch phrase is one I have heard from Romney many times while watching the presidential debates. Now, he claims that he can and will make sure that the institution of marriage will remain between a man and a woman.
It is apparent Mitt Romney’s political strategy will appeal to whomever holds the key to winning the election. In the primarily liberal state of Massachusetts, it is hard to believe that someone who did not support GLBT rights would be elected into any political position of power. So, Mitt Romney appealed to the liberal stances of the majority of Massachusetts citizens. Now that he is running for president, he must once again appeal to whomever will elect him. His best shot seemed to be to appeal to the masses -- in this case, the conservative red states. He had to change his ideas to secure their vote.
This makes me ask, "Why should I vote for someone who is just telling people what they want to hear?" It also makes me ask, "What do you really think, Gov. Romney?" Romney's flip-flop stances should inspire you to ask these questions, too.
Sarah Sullivan is an English writing junior.