Ramesh — Yes, the Linker article is full of problems. But the setup is an interesting question, even if one doesn’t agree with its premises. Linker writes, probably correctly, that Romney will have to make some sort of statement about Mormonism in the way that JFK had to make a statement about Catholicism in 1960:
Yet Romney’s task will be much more complicated [than Kennedy’s]. Whereas Kennedy set voters’ minds at ease by declaring in unambiguous terms that he considered the separation of church and state to be “absolute,” Romney intends to run for president as the candidate of the religious right, which believes in blurring the distinction between politics and religion. Romney thus needs to convince voters that they have nothing to fear from his Mormonism while simultaneously placing that faith at the core of his identity and his quest for the White House.
Linker’s “blurring the distinction” line is a standard-issue jab at the right. But I think it’s probably true that if faith plays a big part in Romney’s appeals to voters, then people will want to know more about that faith.