Mitt Romney, the Republican Party's 2012 presidential nominee, strongly condemned the flying of the Confederate flag on the grounds of the South Carolina state capitol on Saturday, prompting current GOP candidates to weigh in on a subject controversial across the "First in the South" primary state.Romney posted this tweet yesterday morning:
By afternoon, Jeb Bush had taken a fairly firm stance on Facebook and Twitter:
I'll grant that Jeb never exactly says that "the right thing" for South Carolina is to remove the flag. But it's the strongest statement of disapproval by any of the Republican candidates so far.
O'Keefe notes that this is a long-held position for Romney:
Romney first weighed in on the flag as a Republican presidential candidate in 2007, when he said "That's not a flag I recognize."Yes, Romney won the nomination in 2012 -- but he lost the South Carolina primary again. Newt Gingrich beat him by 12 points and won 23 of the state's 25 delegates. During the campaign, Gingrich refused to condemn the flag:
"That flag, frankly, is divisive, and it shouldn't be shown," he said during a debate sponsored by CNN.
The comments sparked outrage among some South Carolina conservatives, a key voting bloc in the Palmetto State. In protest, a group called the Americans for the Preservation of American Culture ran several radio ads attacking Romney for not supporting the state's heritage. Ultimately, Romney placed fourth in the South Carolina primary.
But Romney restated his opposition to the flag in 2012, when he won the GOP nomination.
“I have a very strong opinion,” Gingrich said.... “It’s up to the people of South Carolina.” (He then qualified his answer by assuring that he is opposed to segregation and slavery.)
Gingrich elicited a rousing standing ovation and yells of approval from the audience. Watch it:
That's probably the answer that's going to win the most South Carolina votes, and, as O'Keefe notes, it's the most common answer among the GOP presidential candidates:
Ohio Gov. John Kasich, who is expected to launch a presidential campaign soon, said in a statement Saturday that the flag issue "is up to the people of South Carolina to decide, but if I were a citizen of South Carolina I'd be for taking it down."Of course, if you catch today's conservatives in what they consider a safe space, they'll tell you in no uncertain terms that it's not really a matter of local preference -- Romney is just flat-out wrong. Here are comments in a Free Republic thread in response to Romney's statement of opposition:
... In Miami, Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) said Saturday that it is up to the people of South Carolina, not "outsiders," to decide whether to remove the Confederate flag.
"This is an issue that they should debate and work through and not have a bunch of outsiders going in and telling them what to do," he told reporters.
...[Scott Walker said] that "The placement of a Confederate flag on the Capitol grounds is a state issue and I fully expect the leaders of South Carolina to debate this but the conversation should wait until after the families have had a chance to bury and mourn their loved ones."
Carly Fiorina, the former corporate executive also running for president, didn't mention the shooting during a 20-minute speech Saturday at a Faith and Freedom Coalition conference in Washington. Asked about Romney's comments after her speech, she told reporters "personally I agree with him but I believe it's up to the people of South Carolina."
Romney, the job seeker who no one likes, goes after everyone but the killer.The candidates seem cowardly, and even Jeb's statement seems like weak tea, but he's running a risk even with that degree of opposition. I think he'll pay for it.
“Take down RomneyCARE/ObamaCARE”.
You know, I was just sitting here wondering, “what does that old Progressive Republican has-been, Mitt Romney, think about all this?”
Or not. Just shut up, Romney.
People from the northeast are arrogant power-mad control freaks, generally speaking...
Exactly the reason Mitt wasn’t elected. PC BS. If he had jumped off the PC Bandwagon like the Donald did he would had a grand slam homer of epic proportions.
He never learned that you cannot listen to any dem. Don’t follow the Media Agenda.
Take down the angel Moroni statue on the top of Mormon tabernacles - it’s a symbol of using the cult’s polygamy laws to oppress and abuse women.
As a Yankee, my first thought was “In his imagination.”
No, it’s not. It’s another symbol they have designated as racist in order to trap anyone who sees it as a symbol of states’ rights.
... we all know that cloth comes down a pole and starts beating people, so we can stop so much by banning the cloth!
Mitt - can you say states’ rights? How about the 10th amendment? Any of that sound familiar?
To many, it is a symbol of racial hatred.
So, as long as you can find some people, somewhere, to whom something is (or can be made into) a "symbol of racial hatred," then that is grounds to prohibit it?
Exactly what the Left is going for here... once this passes, then ANY symbol raised by us Hate-filled Right-Wing Evil folks can be abolished... including that more common stars and stripes flag, too.
Very few of these anti-Confedreate flag geniuses know much about the Confederacy period . Over 80% of the Confederate soldiers who fought in the Civil War were not fighting to preserve slavery in the south . They came from homes with no slaves and no interest in the slave issue . I think these anti-Confederate iceholes ought to go back and study the Civil War for the real and accurate facts regarding this majority of the southern fighting force against the unbalance of northern trade and taxes imposed on southerners during the 1860s . Lincoln used the slavery issue to get re-elected in his second term....