John Heilemann on Hardball: Politics and the Pandora’s Box of Social Issues


John Heilemann visited Hardball tonight to discuss Mitt Romney’s confusing flip-flop about his support of an amendment that would allow employers to opt-out of birth control coverage in health care plans, and why Romney’s comments could alienate female voters as his campaign simultaneously tries to court the religious right. “The problem is once you open the Pandora’s box of social issues, the Republican right on the far cultural extreme is so loud that it overtakes the debate,” Heilemann said. “You can’t make fine distinctions so you end up talking about contraceptives and that is a dead loser for them with women voters.” Romney has been polling ahead of his opponents with female voters, but Heilemann says Romney’s campaign is “looking down the barrel of a huge problem.”