Mitt Romney suggested that President Obama has taken God out of his heart during a rally in Mansfield, Ohio on Monday, telling a crowd of manufacturing workers that unlike the current occupant of the White House, he will always be guided by the Almighty. The comments appear to be a new post-convention Republican strategy to paint Obama as anti-God:
ROMNEY: I believe it’s important to have a president and I will be a president, if elected, that honors that pledge and all the pledges that I made. [The Pledge of Allegiance] says that we are a nation under God…. If I become president of the United States, I will not take God out of my heart, I will not take God out of the public square and I will not take it out of the platform of my party.
The former Massachusetts governor began his address by thanking the audience for reciting the Pledge of Allegiance, which he recalled saying himself “as a boy in fourth grade.” Then, in what is a newer section of his stump speech, Romney implied that Obama and the Democratic Party have taken God out of their governance, referring to a last minute effort — made at the request of Obama himself — to reinsert the word ‘God’ into the platform at the DNC convention.
The campaign has tried to exploit the incident, with Romney promising, on Saturday, that “I will not take God off our coins, and I will not take God out of my heart.” Last week, Paul Ryan claimed that Democrats had “purged” God from their platform, ignoring the document’s long-standing section on “Faith.”
The new attack line is also reminiscent of Romney’s charge from January — when the candidate was trying to stave off a primary challenge from Sen. Rick Santorum (R-PA). “Then of course there’s the assault on religion,” Romney said, describing the Obama administration’s policy expanding contraception coverage to women.