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What would a Mormon White House look like?
If Mitt Romney is elected president, the White House will likely see some new traditions.
November 2nd, 2012
11:00 PM ET

What would a Mormon White House look like?

By Jessica Ravitz, CNN

Should Mitt Romney win the presidency next Tuesday, it will mark an historic first: a Mormon couple moving into the White House.

What would this mean and look like?

Would there be “dry” state dinners, since faithful Mormons don’t do alcohol? Would Secret Service tag along to sacred ceremonies only open to worthy church members? What book would a President Mitt Romney use to take his oath of office?

We can’t be absolutely sure about all the answers. But if the practices and homes of devout Mormons like the Romneys – not to mention his history as governor of Massachusetts – are any indication, we can begin to paint a picture of what a Romney-inhabited White House might look like.

First things first: About that oath

Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints believe the Bible is the word of God. But they also believe this about the Book of Mormon, which is subtitled “Another Testament of Jesus Christ.”

Given the importance of the Book of Mormon, this question seemed worth asking: Any chance Romney would place his hand on a Book of Mormon at his swearing-in ceremony?

“No, no way Romney would do that,” Jana Riess, a religion scholar, co-author of “Mormonism for Dummies,” and blogger for Religion News Service, wrote in an e-mail message. “I’m not aware of any Mormon who has sworn on the Book of Mormon instead of the Bible for national office. (I’m not aware of any local officials who have done this either.)”

Most likely, Romney would go back to the Bible he used in 2003 when he was sworn in as governor of Massachusetts – the same one his father, George Romney, reportedly used when he was sworn in as Michigan’s governor in the 1960s.

Beyond paint and fabric swatches

Having never been invited over for a meal, we can’t pretend to know anything about the Romney aesthetic when it comes to home decoration. But we wondered and asked about specific items that tend to hang in Mormon households.

Randall Balmer, an award-winning historian, author and chair of the Department of Religion at Dartmouth College, speculated that the Romneys – like plenty of Mormons – might display artwork featuring a depiction of Jesus and a photograph of LDS Church President Thomas S. Monson, considered a “prophet, seer and revelator” by members of the church.

Another possibility, said Riess, would be a photo of the Salt Lake Temple where Mitt and Ann Romney were married and “sealed” for eternity in a sacred ceremony in 1969.

Then there’s something commonly known as the “Proclamation on the Family,” which is often framed and displayed in homes – though rarely in upper-class households, said Joanna Brooks, author of “The Book of Mormon Girl: Stories from an American Faith.”

The proclamation features words set forth by LDS Church leadership in 1995, highlighting family and gender responsibilities. Among the points made: Marriage is between a man and woman; the primary responsibility of fathers is to oversee and provide for families; and mothers must first and foremost care for the children.

All of these items could show up in the White House, said Grant Bennett, an old Romney friend who spoke at the Republican National Convention and has known the Romney family since they met through church in 1978.

But he said, “the most quintessential Mormon item would be pictures of their family,” including those of ancestors, because “families are forever” and bound for eternity in the Mormon view.

Ann and Mitt Romney are surrounded by family before the October 22 presidential debate at Lynn University.

Bennett also suggested that a verse or two of Scripture that is particularly meaningful to the Romneys might be framed and on display.

If any of these things would hang in the White House, they would likely appear in the private quarters where first families are free to do what they please.

That doesn’t mean Romney wouldn’t be allowed to honor his faith in some way in the Oval Office, but decorative decisions in public rooms – the spaces visited on tours – are subject to committee discussions and advisers on historic preservation, explained Melissa Naulin, assistant curator in the Curator's Office of the White House Museum.

Can I get a cup of coffee? How about something stronger?

In accordance with a revelation received in 1833 by LDS Church founder Joseph Smith, something known as the “Word of Wisdom,” faithful Latter-day Saints abstain from coffee, tea and alcohol.

Does this mean a return to the days of “Lemonade Lucy,” the posthumous nickname given to the wife of Rutherford B. Hayes, the 19th U.S. president, who banned alcohol from the White House?

No, said Cabinet members from Romney’s gubernatorial era and a current top aide. They said this health-related observance is not one the Romneys would impose on or expect of others.

“As governor, when Mitt Romney entertained at official functions in the evening, alcohol was served along with soft beverages,” said a senior aide who asked not to be identified in stories about religion.

“There was always a healthy cup of coffee for anyone who wanted it,” said Renee Fry, a former Cabinet member.

“Cabinet dinner gatherings were not dry,” wrote Douglas Foy, who also served in Governor Romney’s Cabinet. “Although the governor and his wife did not partake – which the governor often joked about, since he sponsored the gatherings and paid for the wine!”

Storing – and refraining from – food

The LDS Church advises its members to store enough food to feed a family for a year.

Food storage is viewed as a practical measure, one that can come in handy during, say, a crippling superstorm, massive power outages or unforeseen financial hardships.

The practice is rooted in Mormon history. The church’s early pioneers, on their trek westward to what is now Utah, experienced great suffering and starvation. They also endured their share of persecution and couldn’t rely on the help of others. So having resources squirreled away became a collective comfort.

Any chance that the Romneys would institute White House food storage?

Not because they would need it for themselves or likely anyone else at the White House, but Riess said in these uncertain times, it could be a good lesson in preparedness to showcase to the nation.

“I wouldn’t be surprised to see that,” she said.

Mitt Romney gathers donations in the wake of Superstorm Sandy.

Even if a family storing it doesn’t need the food, by having it available that family is poised to help others. Serving those less fortunate or in crisis is big in the LDS Church, and it is a part of another practice that may find its way into the White House if the Romneys move in.

The first Sunday of every month is Fast Sunday, when committed Mormons who are able forgo food and drink for about 24 hours. Coupled with prayer, it has spiritual meaning. It also serves to instill compassion for those who are in need, and to that end Mormons are encouraged to minimally donate what they would have spent on food to the church’s welfare fund.

Fast Sunday, or calls to fast at other times, can also bind Mormons together when they pray and fast for a common cause.

A Utah woman created buzz earlier this fall when an e-mail she sent out to friends and family, suggesting they fast to help Romney before the debates, began making the rounds in Mormon circles across the country. A new website, romneyfast.org, also the brainchild of private citizens – and not a church-sanctioned effort – asks people to fast and pray for Romney and his wife Ann this Sunday before America goes to the polls.

When he was governor of Massachusetts, and in general, Mitt and Ann Romney observed Fast Sunday and “always contributed very generously to the fast offering fund,” said Bennett, who held church leadership roles with Romney in the Boston area.

What’s more, Bennett said that when Romney served as their congregation's bishop – the equivalent of an unpaid pastor – it wasn’t uncommon for the two friends to fast more than once a month. At the time, Bennett was one of Romney's two counselors, or advisers.

“Occasionally he would invite me and the other counselor to join him in fasting on a weekday for a specific purpose,” Bennett wrote in an e-mail. “For example, one purpose would be to seek inspiration regarding an important decision, another purpose would be to express love, support and solidarity to someone who was ill or going through very difficult times.”

Whether Romney would maintain this observance from the nation’s highest office, we can’t know. But it looks like the White House kitchen staff may be in for a little downtime each month, if they’re lucky.

Honoring the Sabbath, going to church and other Mormon observances

Sunday is a holy day for active LDS Church members. It’s a time when Mormons attend their local congregation - it's known as a ward, which in Catholic-speak would be comparable to a parish - and worship with their families and community.

The ward closest to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave., and likely the one the Romneys would be assigned to, is the Washington D.C. 3rd Ward, which gathers in what Mormons call a “meetinghouse” or chapel on 16th Street NW. The Washington Post described this ward as consisting of mostly Democrats, half who are nonwhite (including plenty of Spanish speakers), and having openly gay members in its leadership.

Riess said while ward assignments are almost always determined geographically, sometimes there are exceptions. And the truth is there just isn’t any precedent for how this would be handled for a U.S. president.

With or without Romney, D.C. a surprising Mormon stronghold

How much of his Sundays a President Romney could set aside for his faith is obviously uncertain. We already know he’s been hard at work on the campaign trail, Sundays included – though the senior aide we spoke to said he makes efforts to get to church when he can.

One need only look at President Jimmy Carter, who went so far as to teach Sunday school at his local Baptist church, to see how a sitting president can make room for faith, said Balmer of Dartmouth, who counts among his many books “God in the White House: How Faith Shaped the Presidency from John F. Kennedy to George W. Bush.”

Romney faithfully showed up at church on Sundays while he was governor, unless an official function got in the way, Bennett said. And when Romney ran for U.S. Senate in 1994 against Ted Kennedy, Bennett – then the ward’s bishop – assigned Romney to teach the weekly adult Sunday school class.

“He was in church virtually every Sunday teaching this class throughout the campaign, only occasionally arranging for a substitute teacher,” his friend said.

Beyond church, Riess speculated about other observances Romney would uphold.

Mormons reserve Monday evenings for “family home evening,” a time when families pray, study and sing together.

Someone serving in church leadership, who didn’t want to be named because of the sensitivity of the subject matter, said he doubted the Romneys would observe family home evening since their kids are grown and gone. But Riess suspected that Romney and his wife, especially given the size of their brood – five sons; 18 grandchildren – and the likelihood that family would be passing through, would honor the Monday tradition in some way, even if it was just the two of them.

There’s also a practice in LDS Church wards in which men who hold the priesthood – which means the authority, for example, to perform baptisms and offer sacramental blessings – are partnered up to visit other congregation members, ideally once a month, as home teachers.

The LDS Church does not have paid clergy, and this is one way that volunteer ward pastors, or the bishops, can make sure members get personal attention and lessons as needed.

So could home teachers come knocking on the White House doors?

It’s possible, said Riess, though obviously there’d be background checks and no unannounced knockings.

But a U.S. president couldn’t possibly be expected to regularly home teach others, right?

Probably not. But Romney did step up as governor, Bennett said.

“He both had home teachers, and he was assigned as a home teacher, when he was governor,” Bennett said. “He and Ann would ensure they were available for their home teachers to visit, and he was faithful in doing his home teaching.”

And then there’s the big question: What about the temple?

Many non-Mormons falsely assume the large and often magnificent white LDS temples they see in their cities are where Latter-day Saints go for church. But Mormons gather for Sunday services in meetinghouses or chapels, which are usually plain, unimpressive structures.

The Washington D.C. Temple, not too far from the White House, is considered by Mormons to be a house of the Lord.

The 140 temples currently in operation across the globe are actually closed on Sundays. Mormons view their temples as houses of the Lord, as Riess explained in her book, and they are not places for run-of-the-mill worship. Temples, instead, are reserved for the most sacred rituals – the details of which are not to be discussed outside temple walls.

The temples are so sacred that the doors are not even open for all Mormons; only those deemed sufficiently worthy by local church leadership are granted a “temple recommend” or an entry card.

While sacred ceremonies or “ordinances” for the living – such as weddings, during which couples are “sealed” for eternity – happen inside, there are also rituals performed by living substitutes or proxies for those who have died. These rituals include baptisms, which have been at times a subject of controversy for the LDS Church.

Romney, who long served in church leadership, surely has a temple recommend. But does that mean he’d actually go to the Washington D.C. Temple, which sits about 10 miles north of the White House in Kensington, Maryland?

“If I were him, I’d probably just not go while I was president, if only out of courtesy to other patrons,” said our source in church leadership who didn’t want to be named. “It’s not like it’s some kind of ‘go often or you’ll go to hell’ thing. It’s just a standard part of being a committed Mormon, which you do if you can find the time.”

And a President Romney couldn’t go there, let alone anywhere else, without Secret Service. So if he wanted to go, would he be able to? Even Secret Service agents would be turned away from the temple without the right access card.

Not a problem, speculated Balmer of Dartmouth. He said finding qualified agents, if Romney hasn’t found them already, would be easy.

It’s well-known that the CIA, FBI and, by extension, he said he assumes, the Secret Service recruit at LDS Church-run Brigham Young University. All these agencies, Balmer said, are “looking for people who are good, loyal, patriotic Americans,” and many Latter-day Saints, who believe in the divinity of the U.S. Constitution, fit that bill.

So if it would be important for Romney and the first lady to go to the temple, it should be possible.

And Riess said, given Romney's level of faith and church involvement over the years, she can’t imagine that he wouldn’t want to go. Minimally, she pointed out, there’s bound to be a family member’s wedding or “temple sealing” he’d want to attend.

“It would be a logistical problem,” she said. “But I’m pretty sure they’d find a way.”

- CNN Writer/Producer

Filed under: 2012 Election • Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints • DC • Mitt Romney • Mormonism • Politics

soundoff (2,237 Responses)
  1. The Dude

    To hell with Mormons, Christians, Muslims and every other cultist out there.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
  2. Bob

    Mormons are not Christians, not very hard to understand that. The cristian right is not Christian neither, no need to be right, left ,up or down when you are a Christian,You are or you are not.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • Preciousb

      And Bob, your comments and your spelling show just how clueless you are about Christians. I would recommend that you discontinue advertising your incompetence and start studying the definition of a Christian instead.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
  3. E B

    Good article, but it wouldn't matter that much in the end whether the White House is "Mormon" or not.
    Obama and the media seem to think they can get away with portraying Romney as someone he isn't. I've searched for and read dozens of personal accounts which agree Romney is kind, caring, hardworking, helpful, honest, humble, thrifty, and funny. That's the man we saw in the debates. I've not seen any such accounts of Obama, and I've looked. Yet the media still praises Obama and covers up his failures and criticizes Romney for his sucesses, day in and day out. The same media that references polls weighted unrealistically towards Democrats – above even 2008 levels.

    Read both sides for balanced coverage. How can you make an informed opinion on any topic if you consider only one point of view? You can't. Thanks for listening.
    http://www.conservativemormonmom.blogspot.com

    November 3, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
  4. Total Lies

    Would the bias CNN do an article like this if he were a Muslim? HELL NO.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      Yes, they would. A muslim president would be much bigger news than a mormon one. And the adjective would be "biased."

      November 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
  5. pastmorm

    Well at least we know what a Mormon-CNN looks like....

    November 3, 2012 at 12:48 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      You do realize you're on the belief blog right?

      About this blog

      The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Dan Gilgoff and Eric Marrapodi, with daily contributions from CNN's worldwide newsgathering team and frequent posts from religion scholar and author Stephen Prothero.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • pastmorm

      @ sad.....YAAAAAAWWWWWWN!

      November 3, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Good answer. I think your Mom wants to use the computer now.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  6. ssc

    How so? I actually enjoyed the article. Talk to any Mormon, and you will find that most of the assumptions were spot on about the teachings and family life of a Mormon family. There was nothing idiotic about it. It was a great article about how spiritual side of romneys life may play out as president and informational to those who may not be familiar with the faith. I thought the article was more than fair since they left out the real extreme beliefs of the Mormon church.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • GAW

      Shhhhh don't ell anyone about the secret stuff.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:49 pm |
  7. Magic undies and gold plates

    Joseph Smith was not a prophet, but he did profit.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:47 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      You do realize Joseph Smith was murdered for what he believed? Not sure how that's profiting.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • Total Lies

      Same is true of Mohammed.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:50 pm |
    • Magic undies and gold plates

      Until then, he profited

      November 3, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • GAW

      A lot of people are murdered and give their lives for what they believe.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Until then he profited...... That's all you've got? Really? Really? C'mon man. If you are going to put anti-Moromon crap out there you have to have more then that to back it up. How did he profit? please enlighten everyone.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Preciousb

      I hope you profit the same.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:02 pm |
    • OTOH

      SadSadWorld
      "You do realize Joseph Smith was murdered for what he believed?"

      So was David Koresh in Waco... and lots of other delusional people throughout history, showing stark evidence of the insanity of "My invisible superhero is better and holier than yours."

      November 3, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Otoh-
      If you truly believe this comparison then you need to do some research on the Mormon religion. Kind of sad.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:14 pm |
    • OTOH

      SadSadWorld,

      I have. Like all religions, there are tidbits of good ideas for practical, beneficial behavior in society, but mostly they are based on fantasy and superst'ition.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:20 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Otoh-
      Sure you have.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:29 pm |
  8. Bill

    For those of you calling the Mormons a cult, please define the difference between a religion and a cult. I think that if you look hard at most christian religions, they would classify as a cult at least to the same level as the LDS.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:38 pm |
    • truth be told

      It isn't that Mormonism is just a cult, it is that Mormonism is an anti – Christ cult. Anti- Christ is anti American. A vote for a Mormon is a vote for an anti – Christ.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Truth be told- You do know that the religion is the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints. Not sure where the anti-christ fits in there. Please explain.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
    • Bill

      @truth be told – The first definition of Anti-Christ is one who denies or opposes Christ; specifically: a great antagonist expected to fill the world with wickedness but to be conquered forever by Christ at his second coming. Mormons believe in Jesus Christ as the literal firstborn Son of God and Messiah, his crucifixion as a conclusion of a sin offering, and subsequent resurrection. This is from Wikipedia

      November 3, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • GAW

      The word cult has numerous meanings (Depends on the context) For most conservative Christians the term cult refers to any group who has differing theological beliefs other than their own.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • pastmorm

      A CULT insists that it is the ONLY way for any human on earth. A religion may teach similar teachings, but not with a do or die option.

      A CULT keeps SECRET CEREMONIES. A religion has all church buildings open to all.

      A CULT is started by a known charismatic criminal (yes, Joe has a criminal background). A religion is usually started by the son of God.

      A CULT has secret rituals, names and ceremonies in temples that are kept from the public. We know that other religions don't....

      A CULT isolates its members (history of UT).

      A CULT considers its leader or founder to be ABOVE reproach.

      A CULT teaches its followers that they can become GODS with Planets of their own.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
    • truth be told

      The Bible clearly states that anyone who preaches a false Christ is an anti – Christ. Mormons are not Christians, they teach a false Christ. The Bible clearly teaches you are not to add to the Holy scriptures or change so much as a punctuation mark. The book of Mormon, "another" testimony of (the Mormon or false) Jesus Christ. Mormonism was founded as an alternate to Christianity and until 50 years ago were violently anti- Christian or anti -Christ. They changed their approach to expedite a takeover of America.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:55 pm |
    • Moby Schtick

      @postmorm

      You must have a tough life going around insisting on your own weird definitions everywhere you go.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
    • GAW

      @ truth be told Do you need another layer of tin foil for your hat?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:58 pm |
    • GAW

      Some people here need a lesson in semantics. Words have different meanings in different contexts. The word 'cult' for example can be used by scholars of religion to refer to any religious group past or present or it can be used to refer to isolationist groups such as moonies, Children of God ect. I thought most people were intelligent to understand this? Life is not that simple nor is language.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:04 pm |
    • Serenade X D.O

      Mormonism has attributes that are significantly cult-like, in that it has charismatic leaders, it's worship conditions are liquid meaning they are prone to change upon these "prophets" and "seers" command and that it centrally involves the worship of the almost absurdist testimony of a man who claimed to have found golden tablets with a new testament on them and that Missouri will be the location of new Jerusalem.
      Point being is that it's so heterodox from main stream christian dogma that calling it Christianity is not even an honest opinion. It's no different than the heterodox beliefs of the leader of the Taiping heavanly rebeliion in China who at about the same time in history 1800s claimed that he was Jesus's brother and then started an empire based on strict adherence to biblical code in Southern China.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      pastmorm-

      A CULT insists that it is the ONLY way for any human on earth. A religion may teach similar teachings, but not with a do or die option. Never met a Mormon that was in a do or die situation

      A CULT keeps SECRET CEREMONIES. A religion has all church buildings open to all. In the times of David and Solomon there were temples that weren't open to all. Parts of the Vatican are off limits. Try entering a Mosque if you aren't Muslim.

      A CULT is started by a known charismatic criminal (yes, Joe has a criminal background). A religion is usually started by the son of God. Joeseph Smiths crimes were all do to religous persecution. And you hurt your own arguement with the term USUALLY.

      A CULT has secret rituals, names and ceremonies in temples that are kept from the public. We know that other religions don't.... Not all Cults do this. Mormons religous beliefs state that worthy members may enter the temple. So not all members can enter. So is it a cult within a cult? Now that's a conspiracy.

      A CULT isolates its members (history of UT). Mormons went to Utah because of persecution from non-Moromons. There are Mormons all over the world.

      A CULT considers its leader or founder to be ABOVE reproach. Noone is above reproach. Humnas are fallible. Leaders in every religion are not perfect. There are Mormon leaders that have gone to jail!

      A CULT teaches its followers that they can become GODS with Planets of their own.
      All religions have definitions of Heaven. What's yours?

      November 3, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • OTOH

      Serenade X D.O,

      It's also the scenario for the early 1st, 2nd and 3rd century Christian group. Paul of Tarsus and Constantine pulled it off though.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:12 pm |
    • Bill

      And Christianity is just an oversize cult. Look at the beliefs of Christians, and tell me why Morman beliefs are so absurd. Christianity was a cult before it became mainstream.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:13 pm |
  9. Paul Willson

    If he made any ammendments to the way things arte done based on his faith IMPEACH him for violating the seperation of church & state. This sounds like a re run of 1960 all over again

    November 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
    • Bill

      People in government office make decisions based on their own personal beliefs on a daily basis. To deny that would be ridiculous.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:57 pm |
  10. Dan Harmer

    One of the most hateful, inaccurate articles I've ever seen written. As a Mormon, I can tell you that we laughed out loud reading some parts of this. Where did you get this 'information'??? Interviewing ex-Mormons doesn't work. There is clearly an agenda there. You know, I don't like Romney either. I'm sure not going to vote for him. But, resorting to this kind of hate-speech isn't going to help anyone.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
    • Don

      As a life-long member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, I didn't find anything in this article that was extreme and certainly not hateful. I thought that for the most part, it was fair. The line by Joanna Brooks that upper-class Mormons don't use the Proclamation to the the World is bizarre, but that's the only thing I found out of touch. Obviously, as a member of the church, I might explain some aspects of Mormon culture differently, but I thought this was one of the better articles on this subject that has been written by a non-member. Also, I want to state that I didn't fast for Mitt. I think most members of the church thought that was a joke. At least I hope so...

      November 3, 2012 at 1:09 pm |
  11. devin

    you are incorrect about your understanding of mormons and food storage. mormons do not store food because it is a good and practical idea in case of brief emergency. mormons have enormous food storages in their homes because they are taught that they are the last living generation before armageddon and the second coming of christ. They believe that before the second coming the earth will be in severe turmoil and headed towards destruction. During this time of starvation, war, and darkness they will need to provide for themselves. Mormons believe when the earths inhabitants are just about to destroy themselves they will be saved through a Mormon theocracy which will set the stage for the return of christ.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      UUUUUUMMMMMMMM....No

      November 3, 2012 at 12:41 pm |
    • Preciousb

      Goodness. Is this from the idiot book of Devin? It's clearly some unique thinking and inaccurate information of Devin's.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:05 pm |
    • devin

      i should mention i am born, raised, and an active mormon my whole life.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:45 pm |
  12. facts

    Hey people lets get some facts straight. First, Romney wasn't some church leader who will use his new power to make us all Mormons. In his church, everyone helps lead the church so it was just him volunteering to lead his congregation. Second, someone is not a bad person just because he believes something different than you. Third, Obama isn't a Muslim. Fourth, even if all of the belief systems in the world are a bunch of make believe, why would you take that risk? What happens to all you anti religious people if you are wrong? Finally, we elect people based on who they are, so while faith is an important part, it is not the only part. I'm sure that Romney would never change the way of government based on his religion. There is a reason why there is a First Amendment. And just to make my point clear, OBAMA ISN'T A MUSLIM! AND ROMNEY ISN'T A CULTIST!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
  13. Anne Russell PhD

    Any female who votes for Romney is a fool.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Why?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
    • Jordan

      Any person who feels compelled to leave phd next to their name to "show how smart they are" is a fool and blowhard. Especially when your comment did nothing but show your ignorance and naivitivity.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:53 pm |
    • Ann

      Well then I must be a fool.

      I love how you put PhD after your name. Do you think that somehow makes your opinion more valid than anyone else?
      Maybe I should start putting Esq. after my posts. But then again, that would be obnoxious.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:01 pm |
    • Preciousb

      @Jordan. Like.

      November 3, 2012 at 1:06 pm |
  14. DebbyO

    So then we can assume, since Romney is such an upstanding devout Mormon that Mormons accept, applaud and promote – Lying (which he has done repeatedly) , cheating and stealing (not just on his taxes by hiding money offshore but everything else we have seen) Corruption – come on do we really think Billy Graham suddenly changed his lifelong ideals and beliefs on his own after meeting with Mitt Romney? No one , not even the POTUS has any right to push their religious views on anyone and I have had enough Mormons knocking at my door over the years to know that this is what they do. Who would want a President making decisions about them based on HIS faith, something that most Americans do not agree with?

    November 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • Jon

      Go give a Lewinsky to your beloved Obama. What an idiot!

      November 3, 2012 at 12:35 pm |
    • MormonChristian

      DebbyO,

      Read the article again. Romney didn't foist his religion on people as governor and he won't do it as President. Do you know any Mormons in the workplace? If you did, you would see they don't even talk about their religion unless asked.

      Don't confuse the missionaries who are looking for interested parties with average Mormon people in government or the workplace. We try to be respectful of others beliefs/non beliefs. There are plenty of other reasons to vote for or against Romney, but his way of allowing others to do believe or act as they wish is not one of them.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:51 pm |
    • Th510NM

      When has Romney ever once "pushed" his beliefs on us? At least his agenda is to bring our economy back, while Obama's is to make us totally dependent on the government. Starting with Socialized medicine, which by the way does NOT work in any other country. Also, his idea that those of us who work hard and support our selves should be expected to "share the wealth" with those who don't? I'm not talking about the people truly on assitance and trying their hardest to get off it, but the ones who don't do for themselves at all..why should I help them?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:52 pm |
  15. timedonkey

    Moroni, Moroni what? Baptism for the dead? If you have to believe that to be a Mormon then call loony tunes and anyone who does believe that can not be trusted to see reality, when you call imagination reality, then you will call reality, imagination.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • Hilarious

      Plenty of room for all his wives, oh yes, and those magic underwear.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:34 pm |
    • JDub

      Else what shal they do, which are baptized for the dead, if the dead rise not at all, why are they then baptized for the dead?
      - King James Version (1611) – Compare to scan of original 1 Corinthians chapter 15

      November 3, 2012 at 8:45 pm |
  16. Gradschooldude

    And don't forget, there would be a plethora of First Ladies!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
    • Th510NM

      He doesn't have multiple wives now....why on earth would you think he would have them once President?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:46 pm |
  17. grammar plz

    an historic?

    November 3, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • Proofreader

      grammar plz,

      Both "a" and "an" are acceptable.

      "Merriam-Webster's Dictionary of English Usage allows both forms – a historic and an historic."

      http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_articles#Distinction_between_a_and_an

      November 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
  18. cincinnatidavid

    So would Missouri receive special favors with the Mormon belief that Christ will eventually reign both from Jerusalem and Missouri [the Show Me State]???

    November 3, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
  19. ed

    "What would a Mormon White House look like?"

    ANYTHING is better than a muslim White House!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:30 pm |
    • cincinnatidavid

      Well, there's no issue about a "muslim White House", but no; a Mormon White House would not be superior to s Muslim White House.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:33 pm |
    • J Del Gado

      Laughable half-wits

      November 3, 2012 at 12:44 pm |
  20. J Del Gado

    Good article, good insight. Doesn't make CNN lefties, it's just a relative and current topic. He would be the first Mormon in. Just as when Obama was elected as the first black president. Its news!! Doesn't make it any less news because you disagree.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.