Anti-Romney, anti-Mormon calls being made in Iowa
In an apparent push poll, a research firm has called Iowa Republicans this week praising John McCain and critcizing Mitt Romney and his Mormon faith. An individual in Manchester, Iowa, contacted me on Wednesday night saying he received a call with information about McCain's military service and anti-spending record.Then there were "lots of negatives on Romney," said the recepient of the call in an e-mail, including mentions of his "flip-flops," hiring illegal immigrants as landscapers and extensive discussion of Mormonism."Statements were on baptizing the dead, the Book of Mormon being on the level of the Bible, and one about equating it to a cult," said the Iowan, deeming them "common criticisms of Mormonism." "I think they asked twice if being a Mormon would be an issue," this person added.The person conducting the call said he didn't know who they were polling for, said the source. McCain's campaign, which has fielded calls into their Iowa headquarters complaining of similar such calls, emphatically denies responsibility."Sen. McCain strongly rejects this style of campaigning and we have absolutely no involvement whatsover," said Jon Seaton, McCain's top aide in Iowa.Another McCain source, however, said tonight that the calls had been traced back to a number linked to the Tarrance Group — Rudy Giuliani's pollster.Giuliani spokeswoman Maria Comella said their campaign has "absolutely nothing to do with this."Calls to Ed Goeas, Giuliani's pollster and a principal at the Tarrance Group, and Mitt Romney's campaign were not immediately returned. UPDATE: Romney communications director Matt Rhoades offers the following statement:"Whatever campaign is engaging in this type of awful religious bigotry as a line of political attack, it is repulsive and, to put it bluntly, un-American. There is no excuse for these attacks. Gov. Romney is campaigning as an optimist who wants to lead the nation. These attacks are just the opposite. It's ugly and divisive."
Ok- This is just disgusting! Romney is a good man, Mormons are fine people. McCain's Mom blasted Mormons on Hardball on MSNBC last week too. They can't attack Mitt's views for the country? They have to go after his religious beliefs? Nice to know there is still religious tolerance in the country. This really makes me see red!