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. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Prayer changes things .

    November 4, 2012 at 6:45 am |
  2. Keith

    Who gives a shlt.

    November 4, 2012 at 6:37 am |
  3. mariner v

    Let us not forget the fact that Romney is a Bishop in the Mormon Church which you also don't hear a whole lot about. Another thing that you don't hear about is the ritual that Mormons participate in and which Romney has also participated, having to do with Baptizing dead Jews? I kid you not. You can google it. Query under: " Mormons Baptize Dead Jews." Jews have asked them repeatedly to stop doing this but they still continue to do it. They did it recently at Ann Frank's gravesite. Yup! You can google that information too. You can't make this stuff up. Have you heard anything about it? I am astounded that nobody has pursued this fact regarding some of the unusual practices of the Mormon Church. As has been noted by others it's not what you know that gets you it's what you don't know. Proceed cautiously and vote accordingly. You may not know it but Romney is not the guy you want in the White House, no matter what he is selling in public. You want to be concerned about what he is selling in the back rooms.

    November 4, 2012 at 5:39 am |
    • TSB8C

      Romney is no longer a Bishop. That is a temporary calling (usually lasts about 5-6 years) and then you are released from that to later serve in other positions. Since all positions and leadership in the church are voluntary and without pay, there is no permanent 'job' that you stay in. Also as members might move to other places, they would be released from their positions and someone else replace them.

      Your statement about baptizing dead Jews at Ann Frank's grave site is also grossly wrong. We do practice baptism living persons in proxy for a deceased relative (see 1 Corinthians in your Bible), but such baptisms are performed in a temple (like the one in DC) not at a grave site or other location; and a living relative would have to submit the deceased person's name and other info to the temple to have the ordinance performed. Whatever you read to the contrary is flat out wrong. It is against church policy to randomly baptize a person in proxy for a deceased Jew or any other person unless that has been requested by a living relative who would have submitted the deceased person's name to the temple for this purpose.

      November 4, 2012 at 7:14 am |
  4. Kurt

    Check Romney for the mark of the beast "666"

    November 4, 2012 at 5:38 am |
  5. Jannae

    Why does wealthy Mitt REALLY want to be in the White House? Scary thought...it just feels different than having a Christian or Catholic in there. It makes me nervous and uneasy inside. The only thing scarier would be a Jehovas Witness family in the White House...yikes! Would they eliminate holidays in the US?

    November 4, 2012 at 5:32 am |
  6. Leah Reis

    I would never vote for someone who still believes in mythology.

    November 4, 2012 at 5:28 am |
    • trent

      Well only one admitted Atheist has ever been a credible candidate for President in America, but saying you believe in the same God that almost all other American's speak, the God of the Pilgrims and most of our Founding Fathers, mythologies that go back over 5000 years, of is a far cry from saying you believe in the teaching of Joseph Smith, from the mid 1800!!

      For Christens that feel a belief in their God is essential, they should ask a Mormon if who they believe was the father of Jesus Christ, and if they believe in The Immaculate Conception?

      I think most know that Jews worship the same God of Abraham as Christens (that the old testament is the Jewish Torah), but far less realize that Muslims also worship that very same God.

      Mormon’s of course do NOT believe that the God of Abraham exists, or ever did. That's a basic fact of the religion of the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:41 am |
  7. Lars J

    I am surprised that the press has not mentioned that it is common for Mormon folk to refer to other Christians and non-Christians alike as "Gentiles". I have Mormon employees and they have shared that with me. But I've not heard it brought up. It is very much a "us and them" religion. Only if you live in a Mormon community would you pick this up. For a Mormon girl to marry a Catholic boy would be akin to a Muslim marrying a Jew in their culture. Well, maybe not as bad, but you get my point. It would be a family tragedy. Why is the media not focusing on this cultural phenomena?

    November 4, 2012 at 4:13 am |
    • trent

      For Christens that feel a belief in their God is essential, they should ask a Mormon if who they believe was the father of Jesus Christ, and if they believe in The Immaculate Conception?

      I think most know that Jews worship the same God of Abraham as Christens (that the old testament is the Jewish Torah), but far less realize that Muslims also worship that very same God.

      Mormon’s of course do NOT believe that the God of Abram exists, or ever did. That's a basic fact of the religion of the Church of Jesus Christ of Later Day Saints.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:33 am |
    • Jackie

      First of all, I've only ever heard Mormons use "Gentile" as a joke.

      Secondly, Trent, we do believe in the God of Abram. We believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God the Father, as outlined in the Bible.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:43 am |
    • trent

      ^ Young (1852, p. 50). The full text from the Journal of Discourses 1:51 reads as follows: "It is true that the earth was organized by three distinct characters, namely, Eloheim, Yahovah, and Michael, these three forming a quorum, as in all heavenly bodies, and in organizing element, perfectly represented in the Deity, as Father, Son, and Holy Ghost. Again, they will try to tell how the divinity of Jesus is joined to his humanity, and exhaust all their mental faculties, and wind up with this profound language, as describing the soul of man, "it is an immaterial substance!" What a learned idea! Jesus, our elder brother, was begotten in the flesh by the same character that was in the garden of Eden, and who is our Father in Heaven. Now, let all who may hear these doctrines, pause before they make light of them, or treat them with indifference, for they will prove their salvation or damnation. I have given you a few leading items upon this subject, but a great deal more remains to be told. Now, remember from this time forth, and for ever,that Jesus Christ was not begotten by the Holy Ghost."

      November 4, 2012 at 5:57 am |
    • Kev

      Trent, Your quote from the Journal of Discourses is a source that is not actually considered to be church doctrine, but rather personal viewpoints. Whereas the belief in the Godhead consisting of the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost is considered actual church doctrine as given by Joseph Smith in "The Articles of Faith".

      November 4, 2012 at 6:55 am |
  8. AH HA

    Romney is not afraid to face a ravenous herd of subhumans, because that is how he views poor people already

    November 4, 2012 at 3:15 am |
  9. Adam

    What is worse then mittens becoming president is that would mean at least half of Americans don't think Mormonism is a crazy cult. They wear magic pajamas people, not to mention all the bigotry they have shown towards women, African Americans and gays. Those are facts, I couldn't make up stuff as crazy as what the Mormon church believes.

    November 4, 2012 at 3:13 am |
  10. thebeast

    Ok...this mormon thing has to be let out of the bag! I also grew up mormon. I always say that it was a good place to start but for me not a good place to stay. I'm interested in growing spiritually, thinking for myself and not just reciting what I'm told to believe. It is a religion based on extreme guilt. God forbid you go out and experience life in a different way then the rest of the "ward". Of course if you do, you won't get to the same kingdom when you die as the rest of your family will because, god knows, non of them ever did anything "wrong". They guilt you pretty good with that one. In fact you'll never be able to see your family after you die, unless one of the "good ones" come to visit you in the lesser kingdoms. Someone mentioned earlier that mormons come across very sweet and nice and most of them are. Yet underneath all of that there is a sense of feeling sorry for anyone that is not an active member. The only reason most practicing mormons would talk to a non-member is to find the perfect opportunity to try and convert you into the church. The idea that someone could have found faith somewhere else is out of the question. After all, haven't you heard that its "the only true church." It's comical to think one persons faith is better than the others. Faith is faith. Not being worthy is the biggest underlying lesson that is taught and just about everything that's fun makes you not worthy. No wonder many of the people that turn away from the church go hog wild...and plus, now they're for sure not gonna make it to that kingdom on high so they might as well have a real good time. There was no big surprise for that romney had to go to a list to find qualified and intelligent women because in a "priesthood holder's" mind there really not any, or I should just say they're just not any working outside the home. A woman is taught to do what the man says...always and without question. A man is in charge of everything, which gets me to the next subject. The arrogance of a man in a leadership position in the mormon church. Seriously...that alone should scare the hell out of anyone thinking of voting for that man. Romney is NOT for the people, he's for a select few and trying to look good in hopes that some of you might join the church. I realize that theres always exceptions to the rule but, in general, that's the rule.

    November 4, 2012 at 3:05 am |
    • Miriam

      Aweseome! Thank you for your insight .. enriches my world, you are true hero! I .....

      November 4, 2012 at 3:55 am |
    • Jackie

      "The only reason most practicing mormons would talk to a non-member is to find the perfect opportunity to try and convert you into the church." ...that is completely untrue. As a practicing Mormon, I've talked to non-members because I worked with them, went to school with them, and was friends with them. I've attended the religious functions of my friends of other faiths, and I honestly never tried to push my religion on any of them. I had a lot of respect for what they believe and admired their relationship with God.

      "There was no big surprise for that romney had to go to a list to find qualified and intelligent women because in a "priesthood holder's" mind there really not any, or I should just say they're just not any working outside the home. A woman is taught to do what the man says...always and without question. A man is in charge of everything" ...that has NEVER been my experience. I don't know a single Mormon man who thinks he holds the priesthood because he is more intelligent or capable. Generally, they tend to express the view that women don't have the priesthood because they are MORE righteous, and don't need the structure and the extra help.

      Furthermore, 13% of Mormon men think women should have the priesthood, whereas 8% of Mormon women have expressed the desire. For a great read about this, see http://mormonmidrashim.blogspot.com/2012/02/priesthood-cooperative-culture-and-why.html

      November 4, 2012 at 5:48 am |
  11. n8r0n

    Mitt Romney isn't just any Mormon. He was a Mormon bishop when he was younger.

    People who think this is just another flavor of Christianity need to learn a little more about Mormonism (although that can be a little difficult, given how secretive Mormons are).

    It's absolutely appropriate to consider someone's religion when they're a member of a cult that's responsible for so much bigotry, and outright insanity, as Mormonism is. These people may look clean-cut, but Mormons are absolutely the worst America has to offer.

    Misogyny. Intolerance of gays. Willful ignorance of science. Excommunication of people who leave the religion. Secret rituals. These are the things we ridicule in other countries, when we claim to bring our "civilization" to the rest of the world.

    Don't take a step back by letting this awful human being run our federal government.

    November 4, 2012 at 2:22 am |
    • Adam

      Agreed! I let the crazy cult members do what they want, but this guy wants to be President. Its time to call Mormonism what it is, a cult.

      November 4, 2012 at 2:59 am |
    • Doug

      You ARE RIGHT ON !!!

      November 4, 2012 at 3:37 am |
  12. Johnny Blammo

    Say what you will, but come Wednesday morning, the Religious Right, the Tea Party and the Republicans in general could not sell their "God is on our side" schtick, and got hammered.

    There won't be a President Romney, and no senator will be named Akin or Mourdock.

    The days of the Limbaugh Borg are over. The country is reacting away from their extremism, just as the radical left ultimately alienated themselves out of relevance in the early 1970s.

    November 4, 2012 at 2:09 am |
  13. Who Cares, Mormons and Christianity

    Mormons are Christians, in every sense of the word. Anyone who takes a millisecond to know a Mormon knows they are trying to be like Christ. Read literally five pages of the Book of Mormon and you will see they are trying to follow Christ. Get into all your technical definitions and you start to sound like this guy who posted today on this article: "Ya! Everyone knows there is only one, real cosmic Jewish zombie who is his own dad and also a fire ghost who had himself killed in order to save us from a sin made by a rib woman who listened to a talking snake!"

    The fact is, I don't care what religion you belong to, we (America) need moral, ethical, leaders helping guide this amazing country. If you believe God gave any of us unalienable rights, then we need to preserve those rights. Baptist, Evangelical, Catholic, Jehovah's Witness, Seventh Day, Mormon, the list goes on and on. Technically, is one of them perfect? Are you all perfect? Those who are Christian recognize our imperfection but seek to follow perfectly after Christ. We need to bind together, Christianity itself is under attack, instead of picking each other apart.

    November 4, 2012 at 1:49 am |
    • Wraith

      And so as long as you have the far crazy right hijacking your Christian faith, it will remain under attack. When the extremists of your faith finally realize they have no right to legislate their, "good book," on the rest of society, it will remain under attack. When your extremists finally get that they have no place in dictating what a woman is to do with her body and who two consenting adults are allowed to love, then it will remain under attack. There are more and more people getting real tired of the hate your own extremists spout, pushing them further away from your beloved Christianity.

      November 4, 2012 at 3:04 am |
    • mslch

      amen to that.

      signed – a baptist minister

      November 4, 2012 at 3:24 am |
    • Doug

      Religion.. The most evil force on this planet.. And you want everyone to join.. Thanks, but no thanks..

      November 4, 2012 at 3:44 am |
    • An ex-christian

      No. Mormonism is NOTHING like regular christianity, and that's 28 years of having christianity, the bible, etc. crammed into my head. That's 28 years of sunday school, sunday and wednesday church, and 2 years of bible college in mormon-controlled Arizona. Individual mormons, I'm sure, are great people. But the church as a whole is a terrible, controlling, mind-numbing thing out to absorb and have anything it will. What's worse, they have enough money to control, buy, and sell everything in this country many times over. Have you heard of California's Prop 8? Well, the mormon church didn't want a particular law passed, and by god, they changed the direction of an ENTIRE STATE. The mormon church is scary, holy cow.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:48 am |
    • truth be told

      Mormons are not Christians, Mormons are anti-Christ and always have been.

      November 4, 2012 at 6:42 am |
  14. Who Cares, Mormons and Christianity

    Mormons are Christians, in every sense of the word. Anyone who takes a millisecond to know a Mormon knows they are trying to be like Christ. Get into all your technical definitions and you start to sound like this guy who posted today on this article: "Ya! Everyone knows there is only one, real cosmic Jewish zombie who is his own dad and also a fire ghost who had himself killed in order to save us from a sin made by a rib woman who listened to a talking snake!"

    The fact is, I don't care what religion you belong to, we (America) need moral, ethical, leaders helping guide this amazing country. If you believe God gave any of us unalienable rights, then we need to preserve those rights. Baptist, Evangelical, Catholic, Jehovah's Witness, Seventh Day, Mormon, the list goes on and on. Technically, is one of them perfect? Are you all perfect? That is why we are all Christian, recognizing our imperfection but seeking to follow perfectly after Christ. We need to bind together, Christianity itself is under attack, instead of picking each other apart.

    November 4, 2012 at 1:45 am |
    • mama k

      I think you may have the right intentions, but we are not solely a Christian nation. And the U.S. of A. was never founded on Christianity, so you need to be careful how you word things so as not to offend non-Christians living here.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:52 am |
    • Who Cares, Mormons and Christianity

      Mama K, I like your style. I couldn't agree more, and really mean it when I say we need moral and ethical leaders, and we need those same builders in our communities. I just think it's silly that the "Christians" take so much energy picking each other apart. No offense intended to non-Christians.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:54 am |
    • Doug

      Not true at all.. Mormons are not even close to chistianity .. They believe the profit is the same as jesus.. That my friend is a cult.. Get a grip !

      November 4, 2012 at 2:43 am |
    • golds

      Doug, you left the church early, obviously with a very shallow understanding of it. Mormons do NOT believe the prophet is the same as Jesus. Your other assertions are equally misinformed–you might want to admit that since you left at age 15, you really aren't much of a mormon scholar.

      November 4, 2012 at 3:44 am |
    • Lars J

      For "Mormons to be Christians in every sense of the word", they would have to decide whether it is the Pope, the individual Christian, or the President of the LDS church that is the ultimate voice of God on earth. Right there is a fundamental difference because I think they have already decided that answer. They would have to accept the Bible as the rule of faith, the Word of God, not "another Testament", the Mormon Scriptures. But, currently, they officially believe it is not translated "correctly" over the centuries, so it is not trustworthy. Christianity has its genesis in the Bible, especially the New Testament. So how can you be a Bible believing Christian when the very book of the Bible is considered unreliable? I could go on, but what you are writing is no more true than to say the Pope is Jew in every sense of the word. Sure they claim to believe in the same God, but there are differences.

      November 4, 2012 at 4:06 am |
  15. saved and pray you get saved

    We are living in the last days. If governor Romney gets elected it is only bringing us closer to that great day that JESUSis coming for his church. Laugh, make jokes about it, but when millions of people including some of your saved love ones disappear right before your eyes and go back with him, the mocking of GOD will cease. Just wait

    November 4, 2012 at 1:57 am |
    • Fallacy Spotting 101

      Post by 'saved and pray you get saved' is a form of the flawed argument known as Pascal's Wager.


      November 4, 2012 at 1:01 am |
    • Athy

      Saved and pray you get saved,
      Your comment does more to demonstrate the utter stupidity of religion far better than anything I could possibly come up with. Keep up the good work for atheism.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:14 am |
    • Doug

      How horrible life must be when you actually think this is the end.. I hope you aren't telling this to children but I have a strong feeling you are.. I grew up Mormon, but at the age of 15 I told my mom I felt it was false, had no proof at all about those tablets, they discriminate against others and the list goes on.. This is one religion that is purely evil, on the surface these people seem so nice, so kind, but once you get to know them, they are cold as ice..
      I would never vote for any mormon in any capacity ever.. This is one evil religion.. Buyer Beware !!!

      November 4, 2012 at 1:40 am |
    • sarah

      I hope you're not thinking of starting a band with that name, dear. It reeks of PPP confusion (past-present-past).

      November 4, 2012 at 1:46 am |
    • Real Deal

      saved and pray you get saved,

      You mock reality.

      You have nothing but your early version of a Sci-Fi, fantasy, horror story, with not a shred of verified evidence that it is fact.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:48 am |
    • Doug

      Thanks so much for playing.... You make the true point why we can not elect this cult freak.. We can't have Romney and we can't have a Mormon in that office.. No now, not ever !

      November 4, 2012 at 3:46 am |
    • and as always

      fallacy spoter is wrong, the statement issued in no way resembles pascales.

      November 4, 2012 at 6:44 am |
  16. Ox

    Everyone needs to earn a living and Romney earned his living in honorable, legal means.

    If you have money invested in a company, you want a guy like Romney guiding the ship.

    Romney was not a politician, his first responsibility was to his clients and customers.

    In business, even when operating honestly, there are often winners and losers and anyone who invests or has ever invested money realizes this.

    Winners trend to be those who do research and the hard work to make prudent decisions.

    The losers trend to be those who do the opposite, but even the wise and prudent sometimes wind up on the losing end and that is just the nature of investing.

    Just because Romney prospered in business, it doesn't mean he did anything immoral our illegal. He achieved what he did thru hard work, preparation, and great intellect.

    If Obama is reelected, a large segment of the population has absolutely no idea what Obamas plan for America is and that is because he has disguised it so well.

    If Obama is reelected, lookout; there will be unprecedented change to America to the point it will no longer be recognizable as we now know it.

    When Obama talks about redistribution, he is not only talking about wealth among the social classes, he is also intending for a redistribution of power worldwide and since America has more than what he considers their fair share, you can imagine what the implications are for the US as he seeks to cut America down to what he and his brotherhood brethren think it should be.

    Romney is exactly what America needs. If you choose the alternative America, you will get exactly what you deserve and we will have no one else to blame.

    November 4, 2012 at 1:53 am |
    • Mittens Rmoney

      Thanks Ox. Your check is in the mail. Thanks for not bringing up all those times I flipflopped, or where I stand on abortion. Now which stand was it I was taking this week?

      November 4, 2012 at 1:57 am |
    • Rox

      Ox being a vulture and feeding off the carcasses of failing companies like Romney exemplified in what he did at Bain is hardly the result of "great intellect". Many such as Romney succeed in business by being aggressive sharks, not by excelling. He has never once been enterpreneurial.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:00 am |
    • Doug

      Honorable way ? hmmm, so you feel that a company that wipes out the employee pension plan is honorable ? Wow.. unless of course it was your pension and the story would change with a quickness..

      November 4, 2012 at 1:42 am |
    • Doug

      Do you really think anyone is going to believe that.. Wow.. Show me those taxes loser !!!!!!!!

      November 4, 2012 at 2:45 am |
    • kelstermcgil

      your flawed logic and lack of any real fact in your argument is what makes you the doomed sheep. Keep praising corporations and the crooks that run them. it is you who is in need of a reality check.

      November 4, 2012 at 3:40 am |
    • government is no business

      Just because someone made a company profitable does NOT make him fit to govern a country. I'm sorry. It will never be.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:51 am |
  17. steve

    i guess if the white house is good enough for a black person a simple mormon won't matter

    November 4, 2012 at 1:45 am |
    • Doug

      Except the Mormons believed that all blacks were unworthy of holding any office in their church until 1979 when their prophet ( Profit ) had a vision that God told him it was time to let blacks in.. Of course this was the day before it all went to trial...
      They have a history of having visions on the eve of law suits.. Funny how God gets it right the night before the church is about to lose millions..

      November 4, 2012 at 1:47 am |
    • golds

      Doug, blacks could always hold positions and were welcome in the mormon church. They could not hold the priesthood, something separate, which caused many mormon people great sorrow, including the leadership, since the beginning. It was a great day in the mormon church when this was changed, most people literally rejoiced. Also, don't know where you got your idea that it was "going to trial". On what legal grounds could anyone take a church's hierarachical beliefs to court? First time I've heard that one. Go to blacklds.org to see what black members of the mormon church say about their experience.

      November 4, 2012 at 3:05 am |
    • confused black mormon

      @golds: Come on, man. The church was on the brink of having its tax-exempt status removed for basically not running the church in terms of equal rights.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:57 am |
  18. Lord Golob from Kolob

    Rumor has it now that our boy Mittens Rmoney is going to lose the election bigtime. However, we aren't quaking or soiling our Magic Underwear now, not when we have our fluffer Abinadi working so hard for us with his aggressive comment stuffing and linkspamming.

    November 4, 2012 at 1:38 am |
    • steve

      you sound scared
      on welfare are we?

      November 4, 2012 at 1:45 am |
    • Ted

      Uh, Steve, maybe you should read the Lord G's comment again. That whoooshing sound might go away.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:03 am |
  19. Tom H

    Religious people are delusional.

    November 4, 2012 at 1:32 am |
    • diane

      Teenagers, drunks, druggies and dementia patients are delusional, not people who have a system of values and beliefs that are unshakabe by man. You might be 23, but i doubt it. I want to thank you for helping me decide to vote for the man who is not a teenager, even though his faith is not my faith. Someday you may need to turn to someone who loves you, and God will be there with his son. When you become *delusional* enough to be a human being, let him know.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:54 am |
    • Frank

      Uh, diane, where were your goddie boy and his useless son when the water washed over NY NC NJ and all? Yes, you're delusional, and quite stupid too.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:05 am |
    • Funny

      @diane: Funny how your people used to preach how mormonism was a cult. "Oh it's a cult, it's a cult!" But...now that a mormon republican is running against a black man, it's all of a sudden all lovey-dovey. Hmm. Tell me, what are you and your ilk going to do when a black republican runs for president? Would you vote the same if romney were running against a white protestant? What if the democrat candidate were a fire-and-brimstone christian? Would you vote for him?

      November 4, 2012 at 6:01 am |
  20. 1freethinkr

    Know before you vote:


    November 4, 2012 at 1:28 am |
    • Yup

      Excellent video reference. Couldn't agree more that Mormonism is a wacky cult. However, take away the fallacies and what is the core of the Mormon belief? Family, honor, service, caring, doing good unto others... no, it's 'not' Christianity in the sense of the Christian Church... it has it's additions that make it radically unacceptable... but it does have good, sound values. Romney is a dedicated Mormon. He has faith. He has values. And he also has my (conservative Christian) vote because, to be fair, I have NO IDEA what Obama's faith is. I don't know what his values are. He seems to jump to whatever tune might bring him more votes. That's not a leader... that's a follower... and a follower should NOT hold the highest office of our nation.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:54 am |
    • Frank

      Yup, is that what you say when your cell mate asks you to bend over?

      November 4, 2012 at 1:07 am |
    • Ox

      Stop bending over Frank, once you lose your self respect you have nothing left and that's where you're at now.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:18 am |
    • Ox

      Totally bogus. A partial truth here and there mixed with a lot of falsehood.

      November 4, 2012 at 1:41 am |
    • Who Cares, Mormons and Christianity

      Yup's right on the money. Obama is faithless – we don't know anything about his faith. Romney has given two years of his time as a missionary, and countless hours in his service as a church pastor and leader, helping other people, many not even members of his church. Totally unpaid, totally voluntary. How many people in any of your circles of friends do you know who have made these kinds of sacrifices?

      November 4, 2012 at 2:03 am |
    • golds

      The video is twisted; a perversion completely out of context. There's plenty of them around, which are designed to disinform and scare people off.

      November 4, 2012 at 3:10 am |
    • Wraith

      To vote for or against a candidate based solely on their religion is to vote strictly against intelligence. You know, there's this place on the other side of the globe whose government is set up entirely based on their own, "good book.". That place is Iran. It's so very saddening that a politician's worth is not measured by their accomplishments or concern for the citizens of this (once) great nation, but is measured by not just whether he believes in a god, but believes in a god as the individual understands it. We are a secular nation, founded on *deist* principles, and it seems that there are quite a few of my fellow Americans who want nothing more than the establishment of a Christian theocracy, there very own western Taliban.

      November 4, 2012 at 5:14 am |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33 34 35 36 37 38 39
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 Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.