In case you haven’t seen it yet, this ought to please John. Honestly, try to write a narrative piled deeper with schadenfreude than these pitched battles within the religious right over who is and isn’t religious right enough.
On the one hand you have Catholic bigot and permanent victim Bill Donahue throwing down with young Earth creationist and anti-gay bigot Mike Huckabee. Donahue knows full well that the old protestant fundie position, which ranks Catholics somewhere between Jews and yard trimmings, never died so much as it went quiet from political necessity. The coalition held so long as it promoted vaguely Christian leaders like Ronnie and George Dubya who lay the Jesus on much thicker in their politics than in their lives (it matters that neither attended any specific church). But when a guy steps forward who isn’t afraid to wear hard-line sectarianism on his sleeve, Catholics like Donahue know full well their place in that hierarchy.
Then you have multiple-choice Mitt Romney’s battle with himself. Does he support religious tests for political office? It depends on the religious test. When it applies to muslims, you bet he does. Affirmative again when the question is whether America should pick leaders out of the the vaguely pan-Christian “people of faith” category that the religious right encompassed for a while. A guy who puts a tagline like “freedom requires faith!” into character-defining speeches is one rum-and-coke away from glossolalia.
Or anyway, so it would seem until someone brings up the LDS church. Then talking about a candidate’s religion is not just wrong but contemptible (and incidentally, death at the polls).
To sum up, judging Muslims, atheists and vaguely Christian “people of faith” is good. Judging Mormons is very, very bad. As with so many other issues Romney is like one body inhabited by two guys. Or just one of the smarmiest, most opportunistic, sucking character vacuums who ever lived.