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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. scott

    I'm curious... did CNN run stories trying to scare people about how Obama would 'black'en up the White House? I didn't think so...

    November 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm |
  2. Jesus loves you

    There will be pictures of their false prophet on the White House walls. Can you believe that? America is going to be run by a cult! Vote Obama he doesn't believe in false prophets!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:23 pm |
    • Jon

      You are one disgusting human being!

      November 3, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
    • truth be told

      When you're voting Mormon you are voting anti- Christ and anti America.

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

      Do you find it sad or ironic that you put Jesus in your name and then speak hateful words about other people?

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

      Jesuslovesyou ...... The only difference between a 'Cult' and a 'Religion' is the number of members

      November 3, 2012 at 12:31 pm |
  3. Peikovi

    But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg. – Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782
    Question with boldness even the existence of a god; because if there be one he must approve of the homage of reason more than that of blindfolded fear. -Thomas Jefferson, letter to Peter Carr, August 10, 1787
    "... and as every sect believes its own form the true one, every one perhaps hoped for his own... they believe that any portion of power confided to me, will be exerted in opposition to their schemes. And they believe rightly; for I have sworn upon the altar of god, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man." – Thomas Jefferson, September 23, 1800.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • Jerry

      I don't think there will be anymore Ramadan dinners at the Romney White House.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:27 pm |
  4. SadSadWorld

    It's sad to think there are still bigots out there in the world but I guess it's true. The anti-Romney people on here need to learn facts before spouting lies. If you want to learn about the Mormon religion go to a Mormon church and ask the bishop. The anti-Obama people need to stop with the Muslim stuff. It just looks rediculous.

    Mormons are everywhere. You could be standing in line next ot one at the grocery store. I promise nothing bad will happen to you. The Philadelphia Eagles didn't all convert to Moromonism did they? How about everyone at Notre Dame? Guess what, the Senate Majority Leader is Mormon. Are all of the Dem senators now Mormon? For most Mormons they just want to be left alone.

    Is it bad that Mormons believe in a strong family and being prepared for future emergencys? Is it bad that they don't drink? Is it bad that Mormons believe that they can possibly become like God when they die? For those of you that believe in Heaven what do you belive Heaven is like? For those that don't believe in Heaven what do you believe happens when you die?

    This election comes down to two fundamental questions. Are you better off then you were 4 years ago? How do you want this country run for the next four years? Same as it has been or different.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:20 pm |
  5. coco

    CNN is a worthless piece of crap rag...why don't you do a piece on what an OBAMA Whitehouse HAS looked like with the likes of terrorists and friends photographed giving the middle finger to historical paints profiles of past presidents hanging on the wall, or of guests gaining access to secured events, or God knows what else that has gone in there while this treasonous president has been in office. You are a piece of crap and I'm continuing to call for a boycott of you ....

    November 3, 2012 at 12:18 pm |
  6. newsjunkieII

    I am having difficulty, CNN, locating the articles and opinions you SURELY must have published on the religious ideals Obama brought into the White House.
    Let's see....
    There is Rev Joseph Lowery who Obama selected to give the public invocation at his inauguration. Rev Lowery preaches that all white people are going to hell.
    And Rev Jeremiah Wright who Obama worshipped under for most of his adult life. Rev Wright has touted his hatred for America and Jews for years.
    And, of course, Rev Louis Farrakhan, a blatant racist who does not deny his hatred for the Jewish people.
    Help me find those articles and opinions, CNN.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:10 pm |
    • Rick

      Or all the articles quoting from LDS church leaders who taught that black people were inferior spiritually, cursed and sons of perdition. Where are those articles?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Rick-
      I'm surprised you live in the USA considering how at one point in history there were slaves here. Do you root for sports teams? They were all segregated at one point in history. What about the military? At one point in time the military was segregated. I guess people are allowed to change stances but not religions.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:36 pm |
  7. Reality

    Dear Mitt,

    You got three days to wake up to the following:

    Only for the new members of this blog-

    Putting the kibosh on religion to include Mormonism:

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Abraham i.e. the foundations of Judaism, Christianity and Islam are non-existent.

    • As far as one knows or can tell, there was no Moses i.e the pillars of Judaism, Christianity and Islam have no strength of purpose.

    • There was no Gabriel i.e. Islam fails as a religion. Christianity partially fails.

    • There was no Easter i.e. Christianity completely fails as a religion.

    • There was no Moroni i.e. Mormonism is nothing more than a business cult.

    • Sacred/revered cows, monkey gods, castes, reincarnations and therefore Hinduism fails as a religion.

    • Fat Buddhas here, skinny Buddhas there, reincarnated Buddhas everywhere makes for a no on Buddhism.

    Added details available upon written request.

    A quick search will put the kibosh on any other groups calling themselves a religion.

    e.g. Taoism

    "The origins of Taoism are unclear. Traditionally, Lao-tzu who lived in the sixth century is regarded as its founder. Its early philosophic foundations and its later beliefs and rituals are two completely different ways of life. Today (1982) Taoism claims 31,286,000 followers.

    Legend says that Lao-tzu was immaculately conceived by a shooting star; carried in his mother's womb for eighty-two years; and born a full grown wise old man. "

    November 3, 2012 at 12:09 pm |
    • Jane

      Mormonism is no more a cult or business than the Roman Catholic church. Anyone who thinks otherwise is sadly mistaken.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:18 pm |
  8. Simon

    Well, we already know what a self serving communist White House looks like.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:08 pm |
    • Jane

      Then throw in the Muslim leanings............

      November 3, 2012 at 12:19 pm |
  9. NorwoodX

    CREEPY MORMONS ARE CREEPY. I'M DEFINITELY VOTING FOR OBAMA. ROMNEY CAN KEEP HIS SECRET CULT RITUALS AND HIS GOOFY BOOK OF MORMON. ugh!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:07 pm |
    • Jane

      Not as creepy as the Muslim beliefs. I

      November 3, 2012 at 12:21 pm |
    • Kade

      your basing your vote on Romneys realigion and personal life? wow! that is why you should NOT vote! honestly, do NOT go to the polls on tuesday, and do NOT be so proud of your right to vote! education of the voters mind is key, and you have no education in your voting ways!

      November 3, 2012 at 12:29 pm |
  10. Michelle

    Well-written article – while it may or may not happen that a Mormon is elected, I for one appreciate the effort to give a comprehensive and fair review of what it might look like for a Mormon to win, i.e. what practices Mormons observe. Thanks for being so civil, courteous, and thorough!

    November 3, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
  11. jeanie

    Since when did having traditional morals become an issue? Does it really matter what religion someone is so long as they don't force their beliefs on others. I personally could care less what religion the president is as long as he or she has the best interest of all Americans (not big business) as their top priority. Unfortunately both Democrats and Republicans have their own agendas and neither really care about us.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:04 pm |
  12. USMC5053

    I am reminded of the JFK election and the attacks on him; 'first Catholic in the White House!' Will the President take orders from the Pope? Silly tempest in a teacup. Romney is obviously a decent American who will use Christian ethic to guide him, whereas obama is clearly a muslim leaning socialist guided by the 20 years he spent listening to the preaching of an anti-America Rev. Wright.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • truth be told

      When you vote Mormon you will be voting anti – Christ. The demons appear as angels of light.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • sir

      jfk was a boob. almost got us all killed at he bag of pigs fiasco.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:05 pm |
    • NorwoodX

      JFK was not a member a Bishop in a secret cult, Romney is. Don't you Mormon PR people ever grow tired of lying?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:11 pm |
  13. Magic Underpants

    Newly married couples in Mormon Temples are fondled by old men and women before they are allowed to leave.

    November 3, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • USMC5053

      That's right, and Jews eat Christian babies.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:03 pm |
    • christopher hitchens

      What wine with Christian baby, white or red?

      November 3, 2012 at 12:05 pm |
  14. scott

    So in other words, his white house would not look unlike any other white house we've seen in decades... Why is this even a story?

    November 3, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • truth be told

      A vote for Mitt Romney is a vote for an anti – Christ

      November 3, 2012 at 12:02 pm |
  15. Hutterite

    One mormon does not a government make, but what happens here in Utah is enough to make me not want to vote for WiMi. They've got a lot more quirks and wierd, funny and apocalyptic ideas than this article details.

    November 3, 2012 at 11:59 am |
    • SadSadWorld

      You should get out more. Every politican is this way.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:28 pm |
  16. Magic Underpants

    Magic Underpants will be required to be worn by all staff members and visiting dignitaries.

    November 3, 2012 at 11:58 am |
    • christopher hitchens

      They will also require you to wear some, used, soiled and on your head.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • SadSadWorld

      Christopher-
      That made me laugh out loud.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:24 pm |
  17. Free Man in the Republic of Texas

    CNN
    Election is down to the wire...
    Time to play the Mormon Card

    I am NOT a Mormon but when you attack the freedom of religion of one American citizen
    you attack the freedom of religion of ALL citizens...

    But hey as Nancy Pelosi said:
    "Get over your conscience."
    "You have one year."

    FORWARD -> -> ->
    To total depravity !!!

    November 3, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • kyledurfee

      I'm a Mormon and I actually found this to be one of CNN's better articles about the faith. The headline seemed like ti was trying to stir in a little bit of controversy, but most of it was pretty fair.
      But if you were talking about the comments and all the people that attack religion down there, then I see where you're coming from.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:16 pm |
    • Jane

      Religious freedom, religious freedom, religious freedom..............

      November 3, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
  18. Jessica Ravitz

    Maybe I should weigh in here to explain why I wrote this piece. Mormonism is a faith that is vastly misunderstood and often derided by those who choose to latch onto stereotypes. My sincere hope in writing this for the Belief Blog was to debunk myths, humanize a belief system that is dear to the Romney family's heart and answer some of the questions swirling around the country. If we, as a nation, were on the verge of making history by electing our first Hindu, Jewish, Muslim, you name it, president, I can honestly say that we would have written something to talk about how those traditions might play out in a presidency. The Belief Blog is not about fanning prejudice or influencing votes one way or the other; it's about opening people's eyes to belief systems that might be different from their own.

    November 3, 2012 at 11:52 am |
    • Mjohnson

      I thought you did a great job Jessica, thank you for trying to be non-bias.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
    • Troy N.

      A great article. As a practicing Mormon, I appreciate it when an author has clearly made an effort to get a fair representation of our faith. I have been very impressed with many of the articles CNN has posted throughout Romney's campaigning that have been fairly accurate in terms of representing Mormonism. Thank you!

      November 3, 2012 at 12:22 pm |
    • Kevin

      Ms Ravitz – as a member of the LDS church, I felt you did a very good job of detailing some of our religious practices and how they might be observed should Gov Romney be elected. Pardon some of my co-religionists paranoia over the liberal press and for throwing stones at your timely reporting on these things. Also, please ignore the trolls who are rabidly anti-Mormon, anti-religion, anti-anything but what THEY believe and cannot respect what others believe.
      "In important things unity, in less important things liberty, in all things charity." – sorry, I don't know the original source of the quote.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:25 pm |
    • Ryan

      This isn't news, its gossip. If you want to know how things would change then ask the Romney/Ryan campaign. Anything else is speculation without merit.

      November 3, 2012 at 12:45 pm |
    • DrSmith

      A little late for the CYA post. BTW, isn't the Old Media day of rest still occurring? Oh, right, not on election week...

      November 3, 2012 at 1:08 pm |
    • mike.

      you are one hundred percent correct...and thank you for an interesting piece of journalism. as a muslim(one of 1.5 billion), i find the need to educate america on faiths of many hues NEEDED. I enjoyed reading it and thought it very interesting. I work with a few mormons and your article taught me more than my conversations with them...thanks.

      November 5, 2012 at 1:31 pm |
  19. Gimmeabreak!

    @1freethinkr - you're no "free thinker." You're an idiot. But while we're talking about idiots, Obama's 20-year affiliation with the hate-filled, racist Jeremiah Wright indicates the biggest idiocy now occupying the White House.

    November 3, 2012 at 11:45 am |
  20. Mike

    Quite a long article over something that's obviously not going to happen. The electoral math is pretty obvious if you're intelligent enough.

    November 3, 2012 at 11:45 am |
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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.