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Christian author: A Mormon should never be president
Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney speaks during last month's CNN presidential debate in New Hampshire.
July 7th, 2011
03:39 PM ET

Christian author: A Mormon should never be president

Tricia Erickson is author of the new book,"Can Mitt Romney Serve Two Masters? The Mormon Church Versus The Office Of  The Presidency of the United States of America". She runs a communications company, Crisis Management, Incorporated and Angel Pictures & Publicity, a political and entertainment publicity and consulting company that promotes conservative causes and personalities. In an off-set "In the Arena" interview, Erickson shares her insight on why Mormons should not be considered for the White House.

(EDITOR'S NOTE: Due to the provocative–and in some cases, inflammatory– nature of Erickson's answers, we asked for a response from Mormon historian Richard Bushman, the Howard W. Hunter Visiting Professor of Mormon Studies at Claremont Graduate University in California. His remarks follow the answers below, along with reactions from Corey P. Saylor, National Legislative Director of the Council on American-Islamic Relations and Ahmed M. Rehab, Executive Director, CAIR-Chicago.)

You ask, “Can Mitt Romney serve two masters?” He was governor of Massachusetts from 2003 – 2007 and his belief in Mormonism seems to have only served him well. Why would this be different if he were elected president?

Let me say that my book is divided in to two parts. Part I covers the spiritual aspect. Part II covers the political.  Both parts are important when considering voting for this possible front runner.

Read more about Tricia Erickson's allegations against Mormonism on CNN's In the Arena blog
- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Mormonism • TV-In the Arena

soundoff (424 Responses)
  1. Pops

    Imagine no religion.....

    July 8, 2011 at 8:21 pm |
    • Lycidas

      Why not just imagine no possessions. Could you do that?

      July 8, 2011 at 8:25 pm |
    • DiamondSky

      Why don't American atheists immigrate to North Korea, their crazy true utopia? North Korea shines as the pure example of absence of religion. A living hell for everyone.

      July 9, 2011 at 12:51 am |
    • Steve

      @DiamondSky: Why should atheist be forced to live anywhere else? Why is it that when some disagree with the direction of the country, simpletons like you say, "Well go move to Canada/North Korea/Anywhere else"? If you have a problem with other people exercising their free speech, you should probably read the first amendment. While you're at it, you can see that the first amendment also guarantees that, "Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof." It also guarantees individual's rights not to believe in any religion.

      July 10, 2011 at 9:49 am |
  2. Testing4Echo

    If it weren't for Scientologists, the Mormons would look like real nutjobs.

    July 8, 2011 at 5:52 pm |
    • Artist

      Very true lol

      July 8, 2011 at 7:22 pm |
  3. TexasTarotReader

    I've worked with Mormons, Jews, Christians and Muslims allike. Erickson's intentionally inflammatory rhetoric is obscene. How she can espouse to follow a religion of love while spewing this hate-filled venomous bull is beyond me. Shame on you. You should review the idea of Pride as one of the seven deadly sins. You are so proud of your faith that you allow yourself to demean anothers. Shame.

    July 8, 2011 at 5:48 pm |
    • Name

      That's actually pretty typical, really. People think their "god" loves them more than others because of how well they love their "god". Pretty funny, really. People don't understand, as they bicker over which misinterpretation of thousands of years old historical fiction is better, that from the perspective of someone who hasn't been duped by the inherent stupidity of religion, that it looks just like a fight over which wizard is better, Harry Potter or Gandolf the Grey. The funny thing is, when it's Christians versus Smith-tians, they argue over this Bee Ess as though any of it is real. To an outside (sane) observer, this is of course, hilarious.

      July 8, 2011 at 6:06 pm |
  4. Abraham

    Tricia –
    As a practicing Mormon, your for profit book and venom towards my faith helps address a huge misconception that we're like the group of intolerable Evangelicals like yourself and to you I say "Thank you." This will help others delineate the LDS community from the small malicious group of persons like you.

    Like many good people of all political and religious spectrum's I work and live among FANTASTIC Evangelicals who are some of my fines friends. Sure we have doctrinal differences but we're all trying to do our part to be good citizens and Christians and respect each other (they would not subscribe to your general assumption that you religiously speak for them). Though Latter-day Saints hold dearly to our faith, we know that no religion has a monopoly on virtue (Tricia – does your religion hold a monopoly on all truth and virtue).

    I for one will vote for an honest good person whether he/she is Jewish, Muslim, or any branch of Christianity. The Inquisition is over and it's time to see people for their character, wisdom, and ability to govern effectively.

    So again – Tricia,...Thank you! Keep putting out the froth that appeals to the intolerable and I hope you enjoy the $$$$ you make selling religion. If you had such conviction in your faith (whatever branch of Evangelicalism it may be) you wouldn't need to attack another but rather find common ground for the good of all.

    July 8, 2011 at 4:00 pm |
    • Truth Teller

      Mormons are the occult. ( with mainstream acceptence) Your into witchcraft, Satanism and so forth. God still loves you.

      Why don't you give your heart to Jesus. (the one in the Bible) not the one on your marque. Otherwise you will suffer the doom of the second death. I hope to see you in heaven.

      July 8, 2011 at 4:50 pm |
    • Abraham

      Truth Teller – I hope to see you in Heaven too!

      July 8, 2011 at 4:53 pm |
    • Tricia Erickson

      When people are in the distorted state of mind of deception, I believe that if we choose to leave them there, it is a form of abandonment. I believe that if you love someone, you owe it to guide him or her into the truth in order that he or she can truly be set free. And you can almost take it to the bank that when lies are involved, the liar has something to gain, and it usually had to do with power or money.

      July 8, 2011 at 7:26 pm |
    • Samuel

      Be careful of which Jesus you give your heart to. The fake one has butchered many people and is quite adept at deception and giving people, who do not know what they are talking about, the ability to use broad generalizations with the speech of objectification. It is a fact that the propaganda of objectification always precedes war and murder. Beware of the rage mongers as they love to manipulate and step back and watch people slaughter each other. Then they say " I did nothing wrong."

      July 10, 2011 at 10:03 am |
    • Tracy

      @Tricia Erickson – Guess what? You have weird beliefs too! I guess no christian fundamentalists should never be president either.

      July 14, 2011 at 10:29 am |
  5. Reality

    Another book based on Google searching!!! Save your money and search the topic on your own.

    =================================================================================

    July 8, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  6. Truth Teller

    Show me a president that wasn't a satanist. Mit Romney would fit right in.

    Wait a minute. J.F.K. He wasn't a satanist and Lincoln. Look what happened to them.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:18 pm |
  7. Artist

    Maria S.

    This article is ludicrous. Evangelicals have forgotten their own beginnings. They weren't accepted by the main stream religion (Catholic) when they were just getting started. Their people were beaten and terrorized and some of them killed by religious zealots, which was sanctioned by the government. It's been nearly 500 years from those beginning years and now they wish to treat the Mormons with disdain. How hypocritical! With the growth of the LDS Church; in 500 years, they will be the major religion in the world. I'd say get used to it because if you don't join the LDS Church, your children or grand children surely will.
    --
    Actually I do not think you are that far off with what the LDS have been doing in South America etc. When the empire that supports christianity falls, your group will be in line to become the new bast ard ization of christianity...the new and improved. It iwll be interesting to see how Islam moves in the ME and Europe as well.

    July 8, 2011 at 3:07 pm |
  8. Iconoclast

    Anyone who beleves in fairy tales, christian, mormon, jewish, Islamic, hindu, buddhist or otherwise should be barred from holding the most important job in the world. Any person who claims a religion serves a master other than his/her nation.

    July 8, 2011 at 2:21 pm |
    • opinion

      One nation, under God.

      Enough Said

      July 8, 2011 at 2:58 pm |
    • Stevie7

      "One nation, under God"

      Which is just a phrase in the pledge of allegiance that was added in the 50's and certainly does absolutely nothing to prove or disprove the existence of any deity.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • opinion

      The proof of any deity was not the purpose of that response. Clearly, if you would have read the post before you would have understood that.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Truth Teller

      You beleive in fairy tales. ( Evolution)

      July 8, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
    • Stevie7

      One cannot be undersomething that doesn't exist, but anyway.

      It's still just a pledge. This nation is not a Christian nation and was not founded on any Christian religion. Just because someone added the word 'god' to the pledge or our currency in the last few decades does not make this a Christian nation.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:34 pm |
    • Stevie7

      I don't believe in anything. One does not believe in evolution. One looks at peer reviewed studies and experiments to inform their world view. One does not look to a 2000+ year old book that says that light was created before the sun to gain an accurate understanding of our origins.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:36 pm |
    • Iconoclast

      You people crack me up. Evolution is a scientific theory, subject to empirical testing and verifiable experimentation. Also science welcomes rational discourse and challenge. That's how we figure things out. Science does not rely on dogma, and an argument that states: "The book says it's true, therefore the book is true." If you want to disprove evolution as a theory knock yourself out, good luck to ya! Keep in mind nobody is going to accept the argument that the Bible says such and such as proof.

      "Faith is believing in something you know aint so"
      Mark Twain

      July 11, 2011 at 2:46 pm |
  9. jracforr

    No one thought that christianity would take over the Roman Empire but it did It seem that decision was up to god. If god wants, a Muslim or Communist or even a Mormon will be president. If the Mormon religion is of god then your grandchildren and all your posterity will be Mormons just as the Romans had to yield to Christianity.

    July 8, 2011 at 1:59 pm |
    • Stevie7

      The romans yielded to Christianity because their emperor decided to convert and forced everyone else to by the sword. Christianity was enforced at the state religion of the roman empire through intimidation and violence. So, are you saying to prove that one is a legitimate religion one should confiscate and destroy religious possessions and buildings of those who don't believe as you do and to kill anyone who is a heretic? God lets his intentions be known through violent, murderous acts of humans? Wow, that's some loving god you got yourself.

      July 8, 2011 at 2:11 pm |
    • Truth Teller

      I hate to tell you but its the Roman Empire that took over Christianity. Infiltraiting it with paganism.Thats how you destroy something. You infiltrate it. Just ask the Jesuits

      July 8, 2011 at 3:35 pm |
    • Truth When It's Convenient Teller

      TruthTeller
      Care to tell us the year that the Roman Empire took over Christianity ? Constantine used Christianity for political purposes to unite hie empire (Edict of Constantine, 321), even though he remained a pagan.

      July 8, 2011 at 5:54 pm |
    • Samuel

      Christianity did not take over Rome. The name was pasted over a pagan mystery religion which was set up by The wife mother of the first world dictator Nimrod, who in many languages has many names. He was worshiped as god. His mother was worshiped as the mother of god. To maintain the continuity of that system of church and state Mary was pasted into the role of Semiramis, the wife mother of Nimrod. He was the sun and she was the moon. These are the roots of the Universal Church which rules by conquest. One translation of her name is Allah. The fruits are conquest, destruction, death and disobedience to the creator of Heaven and Earth. A very slick system.

      July 10, 2011 at 10:26 am |
  10. GavilanSalvaje

    If she had said "MORONS" can't be president I would agree.

    But if a Catholic could be one of the most revered presidents why can't Mormons be President?

    If we want a president who serves only one master then we 'd need presidents to be unadopted orphans who are single and are childless.

    Mormons should be allowed to run for president.

    If they get the electoral votes then they should be president.

    July 8, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
    • Samuel

      He has to run the gauntlet just like Kennedy did. Anyone can become president. The Mayor of Springfield, Ohio would make an excellent president.

      July 10, 2011 at 10:30 am |
  11. Artist

    James – interesting response. But I didn't see anything regarding his "gla ss looking" activities etc and court records...you know during the time he was being a prophet. What I am curious to find out is if mormons believe the arrests and what surrounded them. Do you deny Smith's activities and statement to the judge regarding his seer stones and fraud. Do mormons deny his treasure hunting activities? How do mormons feel about the witnesses being considered biased and not considered a true 3rd party witness? Am I a liar in what I posted?

    July 8, 2011 at 1:42 pm |
  12. Jae

    Is Tricia Erickson the same woman who founded The Erickson Agency, which was punished by the FTC? If so, this woman has serious credibility issues.

    According to the FTC website:
    "The Erickson Agency, Inc. and its owner, Patricia Erickson, have settled Federal Trade Commission charges over Erickson's role in Model 1, Inc. and Creative Talent Management, Inc.'s deceptive scheme to lure consumers into paying large amounts for modeling and acting training classes based on the promise of getting high-paying assignments."

    http://www.ftc.gov/opa/1999/10/erickson.shtm

    July 8, 2011 at 12:50 pm |
    • One7777777

      They are presenting FALSE people who "claim" to be Christian.

      July 27, 2011 at 9:30 pm |
  13. John John

    So why should ANYONE who thinks a magical being in the sky controls our destiny be president? Christians need to wake up and realize religious mythology is just a crutch for people that do not understand science in any meaningful way.

    July 8, 2011 at 12:41 pm |
    • ZarGoth

      Thank you very much!

      July 8, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • Truth Teller

      to John John

      Your a non spiritual masterpiece

      July 8, 2011 at 9:48 pm |
  14. Todd C

    Next week, is CNN going to post an article about why a Black Gay Jewish Woman should never be president? Or is Mormonism the only acceptable target for this hate speech?

    July 8, 2011 at 12:34 pm |
    • Truth When It's Convenient Teller

      Well Toddlet,
      Maybe if one runs they might. You want they should run one on your gerbil-for-president ?

      July 8, 2011 at 6:05 pm |
  15. George

    all Tea Baggers areEvangelicals, but not all Evangelicals are Tea Baggers..... yet

    July 8, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
  16. Truthful

    I'd rather have a Mormon in the WH than a Muslim (or a Muslim-appeaser.)

    July 8, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
  17. Charles

    So the option is to stay with the empty suit in the White House? Is she saying this?

    July 8, 2011 at 10:55 am |
    • One7777777

      Can't you tell both sides – Repubs included – are trying to guarantee he stays in? Need to ask yourself WHY...

      July 27, 2011 at 9:31 pm |
  18. John H.

    CNN is promoting hatred and bigotry by giving the author of this book a platform with which to spout her lies and hatred. Evangelical pastors have a deep vested interest in pulling the Alinskyite tactics on a faith which threatens their financial prosperity. There is no balance in reporting when such lies and bigotry are spouted.

    Shame on CNN!

    July 8, 2011 at 10:49 am |
  19. Maria S.

    This article is ludicrous. Evangelicals have forgotten their own beginnings. They weren't accepted by the main stream religion (Catholic) when they were just getting started. Their people were beaten and terrorized and some of them killed by religious zealots, which was sanctioned by the government. It's been nearly 500 years from those beginning years and now they wish to treat the Mormons with disdain. How hypocritical! With the growth of the LDS Church; in 500 years, they will be the major religion in the world. I'd say get used to it because if you don't join the LDS Church, your children or grand children surely will.

    July 8, 2011 at 10:37 am |
    • ThinkHarder

      "Hypocritical" is not the word you want. None of the Evangelical people who are being negative towards Mormons were alive 500 years ago when Evangelicals were having their own hard time.

      What you should have said was something more like, "They lack insight and/or transcendent thought."

      July 8, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • merri

      I don't want to be part of any evangelical, fundamentalist religion whether it has roots in Catholicism, Protestantism, Mormonism, or any other. Fundamentalism is extremist in nature and is as destructive to an orderly, sane society as any other form of zealotry.

      July 8, 2011 at 12:57 pm |
    • MomOf3

      @ThinkHarder

      "What you should have said was something more like, "They lack insight and/or transcendent thought."

      Isn't that a given when you talk about fundies? 🙂

      July 8, 2011 at 1:11 pm |
    • dbinpitt

      If education trends continue, in 500 years traditional religion will be an afterthought in a secular, educated society. LDS and other major religions will linger in third world countries where education will not be implemented as successfully.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:43 pm |
    • Lycidas

      @dbinpitt- Sounds like you have misplaced hope.

      July 8, 2011 at 6:44 pm |
  20. AvdBerg

    Not only have the Mormons been deceived but the whole world (Revelation12:9).

    For a better understanding of the subject issue we invite you to read the article Mormon Church ~ Cult and Spiritual Harlot of the website http://www.aworlddeceived.ca

    We also invite you to read the latest entry of the Current Events page of the website. All the other pages and articles explain how this whole world has been deceived as confirmed in Revelation 12:9.

    July 8, 2011 at 9:55 am |
    • merri

      Oh wait a minute! When was the Catholic Church replaced as the "harlot"? There can be only one harlot!

      July 8, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Iconoclast

      Where does it mention Mormons in the book of Revelations? You are the one who is decieved by the biggest lie of all: The Bible.

      July 8, 2011 at 2:24 pm |
    • Bill Kilpatrick

      The harlot referred to in Revelation is not the Catholic Church or the Mormon Church. It's the Roman empire, which had been imprisoning and executing Christians as enemies of the State. John was bitter about this. You'd be, too. He wrote Revelation as an apocalyptic statement, one last war cry declaring, "You will never take us alive!" What John DIDN'T see was that Christianity would become so successful – as a cultural rebellion – that it would eventually take over Rome. Rome did not slaughter all the Christians, nor did Jesus come back in glory. In need of a unifying force, the "harlot" became "the wife." At least in a cultural sense, Jesus became "King of Kings and Lord of Lords." When the old Roman Empire finally fell apart, all that was left of it was the Church, an empire of faith that held Europe together for a thousand years.

      July 8, 2011 at 3:20 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.