I don't want to say anything at all about this ridiculous Romney Hates Muslims meme. But:
Then comes this: a separate account by two Republicans at a separate fundraiser who say Romney made a "no Muslims in the cabinet" remark which they took as racist. So is this an affirmative action story or a discrimination story or a credibility story? If the remarks were made there are other folks who heard them so the Romney team would be well advised to answer fully and completely with first, last and final explanation of what their candidate meant. Republican voters are serious about terrorism and the threat of Islamic fundamentalism but I see no evidence they would be receptive to this viewpoint which as David Frum has pointed out would eliminate one of the most qualified foreign policy experts around. -- Jennifer Rubin, AmSpecBlog
Why need I point out that you can't be racist against a religion? But on to the meat of the matter:
UPDATE: Did Romney make the statements? Spokesman Eric Fehrnstrom doesn't quite answer but says this: "Governor Romney doesn’t hire people solely based on their religion, race or ethnicity. As governor, Mitt Romney had a diverse Cabinet with women and minorities. There were people of many different backgrounds in senior positions, and they were selected based on their skills and qualifications. That’s the same approach he’ll bring to the White House."
What a bore and disgrace to politics that we still apparently need to issue this rote, genuflecting boilerplate whenever someone files a logically incoherent accusation. I take the point for the Romney camp to be quite plainly the following: that Mitt does not understand being Muslim to be an expert qualification. Nor should he, nor should anyone. Rare will be the times that I defend current Supreme Court jurisprudence on the question of diversity admissions, but certainly there is a world of difference between hiring Zalmay Khalilzad because his personal profile offers an unparalleled match with his job(s) and hiring Zalmay Khalilzad because he's a Muslim (his bio doesn't give his religion, appropriately enough; this is an example, I'm not really assuming he's Muslim), and because not hiring him means you're 'racist against Muslims'.
And of course Khalilzad's profile might actually be somewhat relevant to the challenges of serving as, like, Ambassador to Iraq, instead of the challenges of serving as Cabinet Member X. May we please all now abandon this topic?