Friday, October 19, 2007

Romney's "Values Voters Summit" Speech

In the News

Romney not giving the Mormon speech tonight
By Michael Kranish, Globe Staff
Boston.com

Mitt Romney will not make his long-anticipated speech about his Mormon faith when he speaks tonight at the Values Voters Summit in Washington of evangelical Christians.

"This is not a religion speech," said Eric Fehrnstrom, a Romney spokesman.

While some conservative Christians say Romney needs to give a speech similar to the one that John F. Kennedy gave during his 1960 campaign to become the nation's first Catholic president, the address is expected to focus on Romney's proposals for strengthening families.

The Romney campaign provided excerpts of the speech, quoting Romney as saying he is "pleased that so many people of many faiths have come to endorse my candidacy and my message."

"I think those who know me would say that I am pro-family on every level, from personal to political," Romney says in remarks prepared for delivery. "I know this: the greatest blessing in my life is Ann and our five sons and daughters-in-law and ten grandchildren. My driving motivation is to have our kids and grandkids grow up in an America that is safe, prosperous and strong."

Romney pledges that if elected president, he will convene a White House summit to look at ways to strengthen the family, particularly in the inner city. He also says that he and his wife will use the bully pulpit of the White House to urge Americans to avoid out-of-wedlock births.

"It's time to make out-of-wedlock births out-of-fashion again!" he says in the speech.

The former Massachusetts governor also vows to push a federal constitutional amendment defining marriage as between one man and one woman, to appoint anti-abortion judges, and to oppose taxpayer funding of abortions.

Romney also says he can bring together all the major parts of the Republican coalition.

"I want to build a stronger military, a stronger economy, and stronger families," he says in the prepared remarks. "I call these the three legs of the Republican stool. These three unite the coalition of conservatives that Ronald Reagan championed -- defense conservatives, economic conservatives, and social conservatives. We won't win the White House with only two out of three or one out of three. Republicans win the White House by motivating all three parts of our coalition to carry us to victory."