Mitt Romney capped off the week in which he made the anti-climactic announcement that he is, in fact, running for president with a statement that has drawn considerably more attention: He thinks the planet is actually warming.
At a New Hampshire campaign stop on Friday, Romney stunned the world with his rather mundane acknowledgment of facts. Via Reuters:
“I believe the world is getting warmer, and I believe that humans have contributed to that,” he told a crowd of about 200 at a town hall meeting in Manchester, New Hampshire.
“It’s important for us to reduce our emissions of pollutants and greenhouse gases that may be significant contributors.”
The Reuters story notes that he “broke with Republican orthodoxy” in making this statement. I would point out, however, that the GOP’s last presidential nominee, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), came to this not-exactly-earth-shattering conclusion as well. So have others among the 2012 pool: Tim Pawlenty (though he has since apologized), Jon Huntsman, and Newt Gingrich (who has since tried to repent for that by advocating that we abolish the EPA).
Nevertheless, conservatives have declared Romney’s statement to be “political suicide.”
“His run for President as a Republican is now officially over,” declared Charles Johnson over at (the formerly conservative blog) Little Green Footballs. The conservative blog American Thinker declared the statement a “blunder.” And over at Hot Air, Allahpundit ponders whether this is a “gaffe” that could cost Romney in the primary, while wagering that Mitt will eventually flip-flop on this in some way: “Many sins can be forgiven in the name of winning, especially if/when Romney inevitably finesses his position here by endorsing ‘market solutions’ to the problem instead of regulation.”
If believing in global warming is going to be a deal-breaker, there won’t be many candidates left in the running.