Wednesday, March 28, 2012

GOP candidate is drawing a varied Christian response

With a Mormon candidate having a good chance to garner enough electoral votes to earn the GOP nomination, we at Mormonism Research Ministry are starting to get used to the question, “Should (or Could) a Christian vote for a Mormon presidential candidate?”
In March, Bill McKeever posted an article on our website talking about this very issue. (See  We also produced a short video, using the article as our script. (See Without saying “yes” or “no” to the question, Bill discussed the issues that a Christian voter needs to consider when determining whether or not to vote for a Mormon candidate. For example, he explained how those of us in Utah would never be able to vote if voting for Mormons was inherently wrong. After all, most candidates for public office in this state are Latter-day Saints.
While voting is an important right, there are many things to consider in determining the right candidate for such an important office as president. We must consider the candidates’ world views as well as how determining how they will handle topics that are important to us (i.e. abortion, finances, health care, foreign policy, etc.). While there are no perfect candidates, we must determine who would be the person most likely to lead the people in a way that aligns with a biblical perspective.
There are, Bill said, three possibilities if a person decided not to vote for the Mormon candidate: Abstain from voting, write in another candidate, or vote for the incumbent. We encourage Christians to pray on their knees for God’s will in this coming election. However, because MRM is a 501c3 nonprofit organization, we’re not allowed to tell people how to vote.
There are typically two responses to our position. One side says that we are not being forceful enough because they feel that  it’s mortally wrong to ever vote for a Mormon candidate, regardless of the choices.  (I wonder, What if a candidate is secular humanist? Shouldn’t that be an automatic disqualifier too?) One responder to the video even took us to task, accusing us of being in cahoots with the LDS Church, exclaiming that “this is a sneaky mormon video pretending to be a christian (sic) made video but yet a mormon made video!!! mormons are evil !!!!!” Another side feels that because we run a ministry showing how Mormonism is not Christianity, we are somehow automatically opposed to any LDS candidate.  As one man told us recently as a public meeting held at a church, our opposition to Mormonism may cause what he felt was a good candidate from winning the election.
This is not an easy issue, and no matter where we try to land, we’re bound  to get criticized. Pray for us at MRM as we have opportunities to not be political but rather deal with the Mormon issue that is now a current topic and being discussed in many different places.

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Blogger Mitch Hurst said...

We're electing a President, not a pastor. While people's own individual views on faith can come into play when they punch their votes, the idea that one's faith, or lack thereof, is some sort of disqualifier is really anti-democratic given the pluralism that now exists in American society. Christians really need to learn to accept the fact that there are nonbelievers and people of other faiths who also deserve representation,.

10:29 AM  
Blogger Keith Walker said...

Another take...

10:45 AM  
Blogger Brazil said...

In this pluralistic society, I can think of only two aspects of one's religion which would disqualify them from office: 1) beliefs which suggest their judgement is flawed, 2) beliefs which undermine their oath of office.

JFK did not face #1, but he he responded forcefully to #2 -- even going so far as to give his Speech on Separation of Church and State. I disagree with aspects of that speech, but it made clear that he alone was running for the office.

That same speech made Santorum want to throw up, but I think that's an extreme over-reaction.

While I disagree with Romney's religion, Romney has evidence of good judgement and results. He still needs to address the second issue.

As Christians, it is a candidate's effect on the country and on the church that matters more than whether he attends that church.

11:38 AM  

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