Romney adamantly rejects same-sex marriage

Republican White House challenger Mitt Romney, wooing social conservatives, adamantly rejected same-sex marriage Saturday and trumpeted his belief in Christian values and the family.

Three days after Barack Obama became the first US president to approve gay and lesbian marriage, Romney told university graduates that the "pre-eminence of the family" remains at the heart of the principles that underpin the nation.

"As fundamental as these principles are, they may become topics of democratic debate," the presumptive Republican nominee told the class of 2012 at Liberty University, the biggest Christian campus in the United States.

"So it is today with the enduring institution of marriage. Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman," he said, raising a loud cheer from a crowd of more than 25,000 -- the biggest so far in this campaign season.

Romney, who did not directly refer to gays or lesbians, had previously voiced opposition to gay marriage, although he has also stated same-sex couples should have some rights such as child adoption.

But Saturday's speech was his unbowed rebuttal in a week dominated by Obama's landmark endorsement of gay marriage, and the Republican hopeful sought to set himself apart from the president in the run up to November's election.

"Central to America's rise to global leadership is our Judeo-Christian tradition, with its vision of the goodness and possibilities of every life," he said in a speech punctuated with references to God.

"Take those away, or take them for granted, and so many things can go wrong in a life. Keep them strong, and so many things will go right."

Romney, a former governor of Massachusetts and venture capitalist with a personal fortune estimated at more than $250 million, also moved to rebut his image among some voters as a corporate suit who puts profit before people.

"I have never once regretted missing a business opportunity so that I could be with my children and grandchildren," he said, while also referring to his wife Ann, a homemaker who is often by his side on the campaign trail.

"Among the things in life that can be put off, being there when it matters most isn't one of them," he said, while seeking to tap into a sense among many evangelicals and the Catholic church establishment that Obama is riding roughshod over the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of religion.

"It strikes me as odd that the free exercise of religious faith is sometimes treated as a problem, something America is stuck with instead of blessed with," said Romney, a Mormon.

"Perhaps religious conscience upsets the designs of those who feel that the highest wisdom and authority comes from government -- but from the beginning, this nation trusted in God, not man," he said.

Virginia is a key battleground in the November 6 presidential election.

First Lady Michelle Obama beat Romney to the punch by delivering her own commencement speech at Virginia Tech university, about 90 miles (145 kilometers) from Lynchburg.

Romney was introduced to the stadium crowd -- 6,000 of whom were graduates -- by Liberty University president Jerry Falwell Jr, the son and namesake of its late Baptist founder, as "the next president of the United States."

On the struggling US economy, with unemployment still at 8.1 percent, Romney told the young graduates: "If we take the right course, we will see a resurgence in the American economy that will surprise the world."

Liberty, the largest evangelical university in the world, is something of an essential campaign stop for Republican presidential candidates, having previously hosted Ronald Reagan and the elder George Bush.

But its invitation to Romney stirred controversy among some evangelicals due to his Mormon background and while Liberty students agreed with his opposition to same-sex marriage they urged him to apply caution.

"I thought the speech was great. A lot of things that he said, I agree on," said student Lindsay Burnett, noting that though she shares Romney's view on same-sex marriage, "on the other hand we're not here to judge others."

Many core Republicans remain wary of Romney, with critics saying he is a moderate who has suspiciously shifted his stance on social issues, including abortion.

Last year, pastor Robert Jeffress, a leader of the Southern Baptist Convention, the largest evangelical movement in the United States, dismissed Mormonism as "a theological cult."

But a new poll by Religious News Survey shows that such doubts about Romney might be waning among some core conservatives, with the presumptive Republican nominee enjoying a huge 68-19 percent lead over Obama among white evangelicals.

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • Nonviolent disciplining of kids pushed

    Child rights advocates called on senators to pass and strongly endorse a law that will institutionalize positive and nonviolent methods of disciplining children.The Child Rights Network (CRN), Plan International Philippines (PIP), Philippine Legislators’ Committee on Population and Development (PLPCD), and Lihok Pilipinas Foundation led the call for the enactment of the Positive Discipline Bill.Several Quezon City Council members led by Majority Floor Leader Jesus Manuel Suntay, Victor Ferrer …

  • Method to their madness

    [caption id="attachment_256768" align="alignright" width="212"] Illustration by Rod Cañalita[/caption] EMMANUEL PORTUGAL Country Manager for the Philippines, VMware I look after the garden. I’d like to think that I have a green thumb—no plants have died so far! The ones I like now that I planted a few months ago is the Blue Iris. Like the town in the movie, my Blue Iris shows up in the morning and only appears for one day. …

  • JGFP Summer Tour on today

    The summer tour for local junior golfers kicks off with the holding of the ICTSI-JGFP Baguio Junior Open today and tomorrow at the treacherous Baguio Country Club course in Baguio.Sixty players aged 6 to 17 years old are entered in the 36-hole tourney serving as the opening leg of the summer circuit organized by the Junior Golf Foundation of the Philippines with the International Container Terminal Services, Inc. Foundation as main sponsor. ... …

  • PH now market ready to absorb infra bonds

    The Philippine market is now ready to absorb infrastructure bonds that will be issued by private companies amid a growing pipeline of infra-related projects under the government’s Public-Private Partnership (PPP) program. President Benigno Aquino III last week said the government is still committed to spend more on the country’s infrastructure, with 16 PPP projects currently on the pipeline and nine that have already been awarded. Over the years, some of the country’s biggest infrastructure …

  • Filipinos are saving more – BSP survey

    More Filipinos have the extra cash to save for that proverbial rainy day, according to the Bangko Sentral ng Philippines (BSP). Based on a quarterly survey on consumer confidence, domestic households with savings have the means to increase family reserves and to bring up the amount to historical highs. The central bank said improved family income, a generally positive outlook on the economy, inflation and foreign exchange rates encouraged saving behavior during the first three months of 2015. …

  • AXA Philippines growing alongside its parent firm

    Philippine AXA Life Insurance Corp. is growing side by side with its parent firm, global insurance firm AXA, after posting significant growth in its total premium income amid an increasing market share in the country. A statement showed that in the Philippines, multi-billion firm AXA Group saw P18.35 billion in total premium income. The local entity of AXA, AXA Philippines is a joint venture between AXA Group and the Metrobank Group. In 2014, it saw an increase in market share to 11.6 …

  • End to traffic jam in sight? Japan to lend P4B to PHL for road projects

    The Japanese government will be providing some P4 billion to the Philippines for road projects aimed at decongesting monstrous jams in Metro Manila.Noriaki Niwa, chief representative of the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), said the loan will cover major interchanges to address traffic congestion in Metro Manila, including flyovers, and road links.Among them are the interchanges on EDSA-Roosevelt/Congressional, EDSA-West/North, and C-5-Green Meadows and North/Mindanao Avenue. ... …

  • US won’t provide flexibility for countries interested in TPP

    Washington D.C.—The US government will not provide any flexibility for potential member countries, like the Philippines, in their bid to become part of the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP), a senior official said. Economic and Business Affairs Deputy Assistant Secretary William E. Craft, Jr., said all restrictions stated under the TPP trade deal will be maintained and have to be met by the current and future member countries. Earlier, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) said that the …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options