Mitt Romney on Tuesday shrugged off the latest blast from Nevada Sen. Harry Reid -- that the Republican presidential hopeful badly represents the Mormon Church.
"I really don't have any response to Harry," Romney said in an interview with FoxNews (at 5:11) on the airport tarmac in Dayton, Ohio. "He can say whatever he'd like to say. This isn't a race about Harry Reid."
Reid this summer led a pressure campaign against Romney by asserting the wealthy candidate had paid no income taxes for 10 years.
That charge proved to be false when Romney last Friday released summaries of his tax returns since 1990, although Reid and other Democrats said they remained unsatisfied that the Republican was not releasing full returns.
At the same time on Friday that he spoke about Romney's taxes, Reid injected a new issue when he told reporters he agreed with fellow Mormon Gregory Prince, who wrote in a Huffington Post blog on Sept. 19 that Romney is "not the face of Mormonism."
'"He said that Romney has sullied the religion that he, Prince and Romney share," Reid said. "And he’s so disappointed that in his words, ‘It’s a good religion and he’s hiding from it.’ "
Republican vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan was interviewed alongside Romney.
Ryan, who is a Catholic, didn't weigh in on the Mormon matter, but came to Romney's defense.
"If there’s one thing we’ve learned about this we always get over-the-top comments from Harry Reid," Ryan said. "We’re used to hearing things like this coming from Harry. These kinds of comments have no place."