The polygamy smear: Another line of attack on Romney backfires

Mitt Romney’s grandparents, Gaskell and Anna Romney, however, were not among them. They wed in 1895, and it was the only marriage for each of them. You have to go back three generations, to Gaskell’s father, Miles Park Romney (1843-1904), to find a polygamous ancestor of Mitt Romney.

To be sure, that’s still unusual. Most of Western civilization rejected polygamy centuries ago, so that very few non-Mormon Americans are of such recent polygamous descent. But we can think of one major exception among prominent U.S. politicians: a powerful officeholder whose very father was a polygamist…

The truth is that Romney and Obama are both products of distinctively American subcultures–respectively, the Mormon church and the academic left. The difference is that whereas the Mormons, for more than a century, have aspired to join the American mainstream, the academic left is aggressively adversarial. It’s true that there is much about Mormonism that seems odd to people of other faiths. But a contest over whose opponent is weirder is one Obama cannot possibly win.