Why aren’t more evangelicals voting for Romney?

posted at 8:20 pm on March 16, 2012 by Karl

It figures that days after considering whether there might be an anti-Mormon “Romney effect” in 2012, there would be fresh data from Michael Tesler at YouGov:

Media speculation abounds that Mitt Romney’s poor performance among Evangelical voters in the 2012 Primaries is rooted in anti-Mormonism—a sentiment that will surely intensify if the former governor loses this week in Alabama and Mississippi. My analysis of seven surveys conducted by YouGov from late January to early March 2012 (pooled n=7,000, with 1,791 likely Republican primary voters), however, suggests that Romney’s religion is not the main reason why he has not won over these voters.

***

Why, then, has Romney underperformed among this group throughout the primary season? The answer most likely resides in moral issues like abortion and gay marriage. For, unlike attitudes about Mormons, Evangelical Republicans are much more conservative on these issues than their fellow partisans. Moreover, and also unlike anti-Mormonism, Evangelicals are more likely to vote in the primaries based upon moral issues than other Republicans.

This is consistent with Erick Erickson’s January account of a meeting of prominent Christian conservatives — one which also suggests Team Romney played this all wrong (although Erickson is no Romney fan for a host of reasons):

If you are reading this from the media, I think the story you should tell is that Mitt Romney will probably become the nominee of the Republican Party with even less good feelings between evangelicals and him than John McCain had.

The problem for Team Romney is that the distrust of Romney is overwhelmingly about his record and shiftiness, but the Romney campaign fundamentally believes it is about his religion. When Team Romney concluded the pitch (read from an iPad seemingly without a passionate delivery) with an admonishment to not be an anti-Mormon bigot, it was game over. Several of the attendees felt like the Romney campaign was almost implying that they’d win without evangelicals and would expect everyone to line up when it was over even without Romney reaching out.

Erickson’s reference to John McCain is interesting, as ol’ Maverick also had a more difficult time with the evangelical vote than George W. Bush. Comparing the 2004 and 2008 exit polls, it appears evangelical turnout marginally increased — as it has for decades, due in large part to the rising socioeconomic status (.pdf) of the demo — from 23% to 26% of voters. However, Bush won 78% of white evangelicals, while McCain only won 73%. Overall, that’s a little over a percent of the electorate — which seems small, but which could matter in a very close election, depending on where those votes are located (it would likely be less significant a loss in Alabama or Mississippi than in Virginia, North Carolina or Georgia).

Of course, the exits are not detailed enough to explain the difference from ’04 to ’08, so it would be risky to assume McCain’s showing was all or even largely about evangelicals thinking he was insufficiently committed to social issues. Evangelicals care about those issues, but not all of them are single-issue voters. The economic meltdown of ’08 may well have played a role here. Moreover, it is possible that the larger youth vote in 2008 brought out young evangelicals who are less socially conservative than their parents. In these respects, the 2012 environment would likely be more favorable to Romney, should he become the GOP nominee.

The lesson here is that Romney should be able to make inroads with evangelicals if he becomes the GOP nominee. The question is whether he is up to the task. Maintaining his standard cool attitude about the campaign in this regard may make it tougher for someone perceived as inauthentic to build bridges with this demographic.

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Santorum is a superior candidate from a social conservative point of view.

It’s not about whether Mitt is a Mormon. It’s not about whether he’s a progressive. it’s about whether social conservatives have a better candidate to support.

In the general they won’t have a better candidate, of course.

David Blue on March 17, 2012 at 3:37 AM

I am an evangelical firmly rooted in my faith

This year I value the president’s effectiveness to getting things done over his faith
particularly when he doesn’t allow it to determine how he would govern

That is why I am voting for Mitt

Mormons are family oriented, hard working, conservative people
Their beliefs run contrary to the gospel
But they focus on benevolent acts

Much more than one could say about a man who sat in a church spewing hate and claims on the surface to be a Christian

Jesus wants you to give your fair share and beyond to the government? What an insult

audiotom on March 17, 2012 at 4:04 AM

While there may hot be much overt anti-Mormonism, there is still a lingering ignorance, suspician and distrust of Mormons. Given Romney’s mixed record on abortion and same-sex mariage, he has a difficulty job of establishing solid credentials.
Romney has tried very hard to make his Mormonism not a campaign issue, and attempted to maintain a religious neutrality. How he can reach out to evangelicals without compromising his neutrality is a difficult and tricky problem.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 5:25 AM

Kolob.

steebo77 on March 17, 2012 at 5:26 AM

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 5:25 AM

He can do what he is doing. Presenting solutions for the problems that are common to all Americans and leave identity politics to the Dems. Sure appealing to this constituency with these issues and that one with those is a way to cobble together a coalition of special interests. The net result is what we have now.

As they say in all-American San Juan:

Muerte para el Establicimiento!

MJBrutus on March 17, 2012 at 6:24 AM

I would expect Romney to do well with all Americans who value the prosperity of this country over their petty wants.

MJBrutus on March 17, 2012 at 3:28 AM

Uh-huh. So why should anyone think that Romney is just the ticket for that national prosperity? Just because he’s rich?

He can do what he is doing. Presenting solutions for the problems that are common to all Americans…

MJBrutus on March 17, 2012 at 6:24 AM

He’s doing no such thing. He really has no coherent message. Anyone that can go from “we don’t care about the very poor” to “I’m for indexing the minimum wage to inflation” cares about one thing: getting his ass elected.

ddrintn on March 17, 2012 at 7:23 AM

Why aren’t more evangelicals voting for Romney?

Who cares?

Dante on March 17, 2012 at 8:40 AM

This is consistent with Erick Erickson’s January account of a meeting of prominent Christian conservatives — one which also suggests Team Romney played this all wrong

Honestly.

I should care what Erick Erickson says…..WHY?!

Erick Erickson pronounced Newt Gingrich WOULD BE THE NOMINEE!

He may be the “right’s” equivalent of BOB SHRUM.

I don’t give any credence to what Erick Erickson says; no one else should either.

Evangelicals are 25% of the GOP; why do they have such OUTSIZED INFLUENCE over the other 75%?

We should dump the evangelical rump of this party, because they poison the entire party. We would be a national leader in every election if we didn’t have to be shamed every single time by these religious radicals and hypocrites, who are no different from their liberal counterparts when it comes to spending recklessly, waging wars of choice, and trying to have it both ways on the pro-life issue, when it comes to the death penalty [which costs taxpayers millions and has executed innocent people by the hundreds if not thousands.]

As a true conservative, who watched in horror for 8 years as G.W. Bush violated EVERY CONSERVATIVE VALUE, I abhor watching THE SEQUEL with Rick Santorum, who will destroy the GOP once and for all if he has half a chance. And, THAT is who evangelicals support: A BIG-GOVERNMENT, BIG-SPENDING “CONSERVATIVE” as Erick Erickson describes him himself in his post:

THIS IS WHAT A BIG GOVERNMENT CONSERVATIVE LOOKS LIKE.

So, the question is: Why is Erick Erickson calling Santorum a “conservative” at ALL?!?

mountainaires on March 17, 2012 at 9:17 AM

I really believe that the country needs Romney’s skills and expertise very desperately, to fix the complexity of the problems in Washington. There is no evidence that Santorum can do this, his experience is big government not executive. If he had proven himself as a governor before this he would be a “contenda” And Newt is full of good ideas but not a role model for your children.

If a lot of the problems are not fixed soon, no one knows what will happen and if they can be fixed at all.

I am hearing an ad run by Winning our Future, which the hearer can make of what they will. An almost southern sounding lady with a baby says: Mitt is Not One of Us. If you run an ad like that, you don’t belong in the republican party. It marginalizes other people in your own party who make their mind up based on rational facts. It is just nebulous enough to be undefined, but it is intended as an insult to whomever decides to vote for Romney. So, is it not one of us based on religious bigotry, or can someone here put a name to it?

Not one of YOU. Why do you want to go there?

Fleuries on March 17, 2012 at 9:31 AM

mountainaires on March 17, 2012 at 9:17 AM

Wow, love the inconsistency of your hate filled post. You have no idea or clue who evangelicals are or what they truly stand for.

By the way, I thought you could care less for EE and yet you quote him and use his words to support your own theory, talk about being hypocritical.

GWB – was awful in his last term of office for all conservatives including evangelicals. There were many evangelicals just as upset as you were. GWB was not an evangelical, but I bet you did not know that at all.

Your continuing the myth of Santorum is laughable at best. Though it might be tiring to repeat over and over again that Santorum was one of the top three conservatives by voting record in the Senate, but who cares about that right, lets cherry pick him to death, much easier.

Romney is going to go down as a great failure. He has nothing positive to run on. He believes we are in a recovery, loves Romneycare (father of Obamacare) and the list goes on and on. He wants now to defund PP which he has supported in the past through his own bill, etc.

You want a squish go vote Romney. Try to win an election without the Evangelical vote. Go ahead.

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Fleuries on March 17, 2012 at 9:31 AM

Let me get this straight, you are whining over a PAC ad that correctly identifies the fact that Romney is not conservative at all. Are you tone deaf to the Romney PAC ads that are so venomously negative that he is actually turning people off from voting for HIM?

This is similar to when BillO asked Romney about the SuperPAC’s and Mitten’s had the gull to take Gingrich and Santorum’s PAC’s to task and conveniently forget about the lying machine of his own PAC and on top of it BillO lets it slide (wonder who Bill loves).

Romney’s claim to fame – - – -ROMNEYCARE. If that is what you want then fine, but let’s call a spade a spade.

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 9:49 AM

… Santorum was one of the top three conservatives by voting record in the Senate …

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Comic gold.

Dante on March 17, 2012 at 10:24 AM

… Santorum was one of the top three conservatives by voting record in the Senate …

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 9:41 AM

Comic gold.

Dante on March 17, 2012 at 10:24 AM

Fact.

Of course, Ron Paul has never won a statewide election, or any election outside of his own Congressional District, so he’s never been in the Senate.

There Goes The Neighborhood on March 17, 2012 at 10:36 AM

One thing I do have to give props to the Mitt Romney supporters over. This absurd idea that he’s somehow the most conservative of this less than conservative bunch is quite a magic trick. You all push it without blinking though.

hawkdriver on March 17, 2012 at 10:46 AM

Nice try. The problem is, what Mormons teach about becoming gods is very different from what those Bible passages teach, and even the early church fathers taught.

Some early church fathers on the idea of theosis:

[T]he Word of God, our Lord Jesus Christ, who did, through His transcendent love, become what we are, that He might bring us to be even what He is Himself. Irenaeus

Do we cast blame on him [God] because we were not made gods from the beginning, but were at first created merely as men, and then later as gods?” Irenaeus

“Yea, I say, the Word of God became a man so that you might learn from a man how to become a god.” Clement of Alexandria

‘Men are gods, and gods are men.’” Heraclitus

men are “deemed worthy of becoming gods and of having power to become sons of the highest.” Justin Martyr

“The Word was made flesh in order that we might be enabled to be made gods.” Athanasius

“But he himself that justifies also deifies, for by justifying he makes sons of God. ‘For he has given them power to become the sons of God’ [John 1:12] If then we have been made sons of God, we have also been made gods.” Saint Augustine

“Men should escape from being men, and hasten to become gods” Origen

Eastern Orthodox Christianity still teaches the principle of theosis.

C.S. Lewis writes of the doctrine of theosis, “The command Be ye perfect [Matt. 5:48] is not idealistic gas. Nor is it a command to do the impossible. He is going to make us into creatures that can obey that command. He said (in the Bible) that we were “gods” and he is going to make good His words. If we let Him – for we can prevent Him, if we choose – He will make the feeblest and filthiest of us into a god or goddess…”

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 12:37 AM

Like I said, nice try.

I’m assuming you copy n pasted that from a pro-Mormon propaganda website, since this is a commonly used, dishonest Mormon tactic.

Mormons will cite certain phrases to try to prove they are just like orthodox Christianity, when they have secretly redefined these terms for themselves. What these early church fathers were talking about was something VERY different from what Mormonism teaches. But the Mormon relies upon the ignorance of people, much like liberals do, in order to further their secret agenda.

THAT is why Mormonism is considered a cult – because they are so secretive as to what they actually believe. They commonly use misleading or flat out dishonest tactics when discussing their beliefs. Mormonism tries to portray itself as just another Christian denomination, when Mormonism is NOTHING like orthodox Christianity.

Jesus and Lucifer are brothers? That ain’t orthodox Christianity.

God the Father and Jesus are both created beings? That ain’t orthodox Christianity.

You can become a god the same way that God the Father became a God? That ain’t orthodox Christianity.

Not even close.

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 12:06 PM

One thing I do have to give props to the Mitt Romney supporters over. This absurd idea that he’s somehow the most conservative of this less than conservative bunch is quite a magic trick. You all push it without blinking though.

hawkdriver on March 17, 2012 at 10:46 AM

I don’t know who it is you’re talking about. For my part, I never said that. In fact, I find the idea of being “the most conservative” to be an asinine, intellectually sloppy benchmark to evaluate a candidate.

MJBrutus on March 17, 2012 at 12:23 PM

I’m assuming you copy n pasted that from a pro-Mormon propaganda website, since this is a commonly used, dishonest Mormon tactic.

The quotes are from Irenaeus, Clement, Heraclitus, Justin Martyr, Athanasius, Origen, and Augustine. I can list the original citations, if you like. If you have issues with the accuracy of the quotes, by all means correct them.

Mormons will cite certain phrases to try to prove they are just like orthodox Christianity, when they have secretly redefined these terms for themselves.

The point of the quotes is to show that original Christians in the time of the Apostles and apostolic fathers believed in the doctrine of theosis, just as Eastern Orthodox Christians (and other modern Christians such as C. S. Lewis) still do. Some branches of “Orthodox” Christianity no longer do. On that point, it does make Mormon theology different from some branches of “Orthodox” Christianity–but not from others (i.e. Eastern Orthodox).

Certainly, Mormons (and Southern Baptists, and Catholics, and Episcopalians, and Eastern Orthodox, and any of the other 1200 branches of Christianity) define different theological terms and doctrines differently. I don’t see any of those differences as disqualifying for a Presidential nominee.

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 12:58 PM

I imagine the evangelicals don’t want to vote for him for much the same reason as many of us don’t either; he’s an oily unlikeable used car salesman who is probably going to get his a** handed to him by a weak incumbent.

austinnelly on March 17, 2012 at 1:29 PM

I’m assuming you copy n pasted that from a pro-Mormon propaganda website, since this is a commonly used, dishonest Mormon tactic.

The quotes are from Irenaeus, Clement, Heraclitus, Justin Martyr, Athanasius, Origen, and Augustine. I can list the original citations, if you like. If you have issues with the accuracy of the quotes, by all means correct them.

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Nice try to dodge my point. I didn’t question the authenticity of the quotes. I questioned which website you cut n pasted this from. The fact you didn’t give a straight answer, and tried to dodge it, suggests you did copy it from a Mormon propaganda site. If so, why try to hide it? There’s no need to be dishonest…

Mormons will cite certain phrases to try to prove they are just like orthodox Christianity, when they have secretly redefined these terms for themselves.

The point of the quotes is to show that original Christians in the time of the Apostles and apostolic fathers believed in the doctrine of theosis, just as Eastern Orthodox Christians (and other modern Christians such as C. S. Lewis) still do. Some branches of “Orthodox” Christianity no longer do. On that point, it does make Mormon theology different from some branches of “Orthodox” Christianity–but not from others (i.e. Eastern Orthodox).

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Again, you are being dishonest, because NO orthodox branch of Christianity has ever taught or believed what the Mormons teach about becoming a god.

This is exactly what I’ve been talking about. Mormons state “I believe Jesus is the Son of God,” but that isn’t the issue. Both Christians and Mormons believe Jesus is the Son of God. The problem is, when a Mormon says “Jesus is the Son of God,” Mormons mean something that is completely different than what orthodox Christianity means by that.

That is why you, and people like you, use quotes with certain words and phrases, without explaining what they meant by those words and phrases, and what Mormonism means by those words and phrases. Because if you did, people would come to understand they mean two completely different things. In other words, Mormon doctrine is a wolf in sheep clothing.

I don’t see any of those differences as disqualifying for a Presidential nominee.

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 12:58 PM

Wow, another dodge. We weren’t discussing whether or not this disqualifies Romney as a candidate. We were discussing whether or not the doctrine of Mormonism, that man can become a god, falls within orthodox Christianity.

I hope people are paying attention, because this is exactly how it is done – never give a straight answer, but dodge, play word games with secretly redefined words, and try to divert. Obama would be proud.

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 1:48 PM

THAT is why Mormonism is considered a cult – because they are so secretive as to what they actually believe. They commonly use misleading or flat out dishonest tactics when discussing their beliefs. Mormonism tries to portray itself as just another Christian denomination, when Mormonism is NOTHING like orthodox Christianity.

That has it almost backwards. Innuendo, selective quotation, exaggeration, and absurdities are staples of counter-cult literature about Mormonism. They present a barely recognizable caricature of Mormonism as “the truth”.

Their claims are quite checkable, beginning with the Book of Mormon itself. That is the great secret of Mormon belief, and it’s only a secret because people won’t read it.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

That has it almost backwards. Innuendo, selective quotation, exaggeration, and absurdities are staples of counter-cult literature about Mormonism. They present a barely recognizable caricature of Mormonism as “the truth”.

Their claims are quite checkable, beginning with the Book of Mormon itself. That is the great secret of Mormon belief, and it’s only a secret because people won’t read it.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

Thanks for once again proving my point. Mormons will often point people to read the book of Mormon. The thing is, the book of Mormon goes back to the beginning of Mormonism, in its earliest stages.

Much of the theology in the book of Mormonism is pretty close to orthodox Christianity, even though the story is not. But this is why people who make this point are being deceptive: the real off-the-wall theology that makes it distinct from orthodox Christianity was developed after the book of Mormon.

Mormons have a lot of what they considered inspired sources of their doctrine. So again, we see the “I believe Jesus is the Son of God” tactic to divert from the heart of the matter.

So, why don’t Mormons be upfront and tell people they believe God the Father was once a man just like us? It is “kinda” a big theological point, and I don’t recall reading that in the book of Mormon. What are you trying to hide?

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 2:38 PM

There’s no need to be dishonest…

What is dishonest about copying and pasting quotations you admit are accurate? The quotes ARE from the apostolic fathers listed. Would cutting and pasting them from ANY existing source change them? You seem hung up on how they got on the page, implying that cutting and pasting is a “dishonest Mormon tactic”. Do other religions eschew the use of cutting and pasting accurate quotes in order to illustrate a point? You are attacking the method of transmitting the quotes. It does not change the quotes, or that they illustrate this point well: The original apostolic fathers quoted believed in theosis. You don’t. OK, our religions differ on that point of doctrine. Other Christians besides Mormons believe in theosis, as I’ve shown.

If you want to read a Dominican Catholic monk’s thesis on the topic, try this:

Jordan Vajda, OP, “Partakers of the Divine Nature”: A Comparative Analysis of the Patristic and Mormon Doctrines of Divinization, master’s thesis, Graduate Theological Union at the University of California, Berkeley, 1998.

He comments on his paper: “The historic Christian doctrine of salvation — theosis, i.e., human divinization — for too long has been forgotten by too many Christians, despite the fact that this teaching is a part of that common inheritance — first millennium Christianity — that unites Catholics, Protestants, and Orthodox Christians.”

We weren’t discussing whether or not this disqualifies Romney as a candidate.

I believe that’s part and parcel of the thread we’re commenting on: “Why aren’t more Evangelicals voting for Romney?”

I hope people are paying attention, because this is exactly how it is done – never give a straight answer, but dodge, play word games with secretly redefined words, and try to divert. Obama would be proud.

As I mentioned, all religions define words and terms to suit their beliefs and doctrines. For an LDS perspective on this point, see:

Daniel C. Peterson and Stephen D. Ricks, Offenders for a Word: How Anti-Mormons Play Word Games to Attack the Latter-day Saints (Aspen Books, Salt Lake City, Utah, 1992).

EyeSurgeon on March 17, 2012 at 3:31 PM

I suppose I would be considered “evangelical”. My objection to Romney is very simple.

It’s not about religion, it’s about Obamacare. Romney put it in place in his home state, he consulted on Obamacare, and I can’t stomach that.

bigbeachbird on March 17, 2012 at 3:38 PM

Their claims are quite checkable, beginning with the Book of Mormon itself. That is the great secret of Mormon belief, and it’s only a secret because people won’t read it.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

I am unsure you really want to go there. Unlike the Bible which has and is used by archeologists for a litany of reasons, the Book of Mormon is so inaccurate that the Smithsonian has stated that it has not nor will it ever use it as a source for any archeological digs. Sadly, Mormon archeologists who tried to prove BofM acknowledge complete failure as well.

The Book of Mormon plagiarizes KJV and honestly, try to build those boats that those people supposedly used to get to the Americas. It is downright inconceivable to have them even function.

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 4:34 PM

What is dishonest about copying and pasting quotations you admit are accurate? The quotes ARE from the apostolic fathers listed.

Which I’ve never disputed. I’ve already pointed out that that isn’t the point.

Would cutting and pasting them from ANY existing source change them? You seem hung up on how they got on the page, implying that cutting and pasting is a “dishonest Mormon tactic”. Do other religions eschew the use of cutting and pasting accurate quotes in order to illustrate a point? You are attacking the method of transmitting the quotes.

And this is another strawman, yet another example of your dishonesty. I really asked you a simple question, which you refuse to answer. You continue to refuse to admit what website you copied n pasted those quotes from. You either copied that directly from a Mormon site, or you didn’t. But you “ain’t” tellin’.

It does not change the quotes,

I never said it did.

or that they illustrate this point well: The original apostolic fathers quoted believed in theosis. You don’t. OK, our religions differ on that point of doctrine. Other Christians besides Mormons believe in theosis, as I’ve shown.

Again, you are flat out wrong. The early church fathers did NOT believe they would become gods, just as God the Father had once been a mere man and became God. When they speak of becoming gods, they mean something very different. And the way you play these games, you are lying. Here is the deception Mormons regularly engage in:

Mormons will say “I believe Jesus is the Son of God.” They say that, because they know it will win approval of orthodox Christians. And Joe Christian might buy it, because Joe Christians assumes the Mormon means the same thing Christians mean by that.

But the Mormon knows all along that they believe something very different by that statement. They believe Jesus is a created being, and that Jesus was literally “begotten” by God the Father.

So when the Mormon tries to win the support of Christians by saying “I believe Jesus is the Son of God,” they are actually disagreeing with Christians that “Jesus is the Son of God,” because Mormons take that to mean Jesus was created, and Christians take that same phrase to mean Jesus is uncreated and eternal.

Mormons deliberately use a phrase that sounds like they’re agreeing with Christianity, when in fact, they are disagreeing with Christianity, over a foundational doctrine.

We weren’t discussing whether or not this disqualifies Romney as a candidate.

I believe that’s part and parcel of the thread we’re commenting on: “Why aren’t more Evangelicals voting for Romney?”

Go back and check the previous comments between us. Your initial post that I responded to had nothing about Romney’s fitness for being a candidate. You are trying to change the subject, because I have exposed your dishonest tactics.

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 4:48 PM

Of course, their is an anti-mormon bias that exists in the south…It didn’t take long for the Perry campaign to play to the bias with the pastor who used the “cult” word…Did Perry apologize? No matter…Huckabee played to the bias as well in the previous election cycle. For the bigots, out there no matter their religious affiliation, I would have to ask, how is your flock doing??? Having spent a lot of time in Utah, I came to really admire the mormons for their industry, thrift, family life, and political leanings. Utah is a deep red state…What the mormons created in what was the wasteland of the Salt Lake Valley in the mid-1800s is now something to behold. Utah is one of the best run states and Salt Lake city is a world class city. Furthermore, if you compared the mormons to non-mormons I think the mormons would compare quite favorably in terms of personal happiness, and satisfaction of family and professional life. I think you would also find less divorce, alcoholism, drug addiction, and less societal ills across the board. So again, I have to ask the bigots, how is your flock doing? Mitt has done well to avoid religion as an issue…And yet, I know if he is the nominee the mormon faith will be placed under the microscope. This shouldn not be a problem, I think many Americans will find a lot to like in this religion…

Nozzle on March 17, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Their claims are quite checkable, beginning with the Book of Mormon itself. That is the great secret of Mormon belief, and it’s only a secret because people won’t read it.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 2:30 PM

I am unsure you really want to go there. Unlike the Bible which has and is used by archeologists for a litany of reasons, the Book of Mormon is so inaccurate that the Smithsonian has stated that it has not nor will it ever use it as a source for any archeological digs. Sadly, Mormon archeologists who tried to prove BofM acknowledge complete failure as well.

The Book of Mormon plagiarizes KJV and honestly, try to build those boats that those people supposedly used to get to the Americas. It is downright inconceivable to have them even function.

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 4:34 PM

PuritanD71, that’s not the Mormon tactic. They don’t rely upon objective evidence to try to prove their religion is true, they depend upon the “burning of the bosom,” – their “test” for truth is founded on a subjective, internal feeling.

What this guy is doing is trying to do is what Mormonism does all the time. They try to portray themselves as not being all that different from “regular” Christianity. One of the ways they do this is have people read the book of Mormon.

Like many cults, Mormonism started out not too far from orthodox Christianity, but over time they steered farther and farther away. The truly bizarre doctrines of Mormonism hadn’t been developed until after the book of Mormon was written.

So they want people to read the book of Mormon, and trick them into thinking it is a summation of what Mormons believe. The general Christian will read it and think “Hey, this isn’t all that different from what I believe,” thus lowering their guard. It is only over time that the other, stranger doctrines are gradually revealed.

Look at how none of the Mormons here will come out and just admit they believe God the Father was once a mere man like us, and that only later did he become God. Yet they want you to think they’re just another Christian denomination.

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 4:59 PM

So again, I have to ask the bigots, how is your flock doing? Mitt has done well to avoid religion as an issue…And yet, I know if he is the nominee the mormon faith will be placed under the microscope. This shouldn not be a problem, I think many Americans will find a lot to like in this religion…

Nozzle on March 17, 2012 at 4:51 PM

Nice. So tell me, does it make one a bigot because they are wary of voting for a political leader that believes he is god, or at least on the path to godhood?

Great evil has been perpetrated by such political leaders throughout history.

I think it is a legit point to raise. It doesn’t take a bigot to have reservations about electing a president that thinks he’s on his way to becoming a god. Because Romney, as a “good Mormon,” most certainly believes he is on his way to becoming a god, just as he believes God the Father was once a man who became God.

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 5:03 PM

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 4:59 PM

It depends on how Mormon some Mormons are as well as those who may read this thread who do not fully understand why it is not Christian.

Understandably, those who have climbed the charts per se, not much will show the light for them. They are consumed already. However, there is always hope.

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 5:05 PM

Thanks for once again proving my point. Mormons will often point people to read the book of Mormon. The thing is, the book of Mormon goes back to the beginning of Mormonism, in its earliest stages.

Sure. It’s considered foundational. Why is that any more deceptive than expecting someone posing as an expert on Shakespeare to demonstrate that he has read the plays?

Much of the theology in the book of Mormonism is pretty close to orthodox Christianity, even though the story is not.

Yes, that’s among the reasons Mormons protest so vigorously at being called non-Christian.

But this is why people who make this point are being deceptive: the real off-the-wall theology that makes it distinct from orthodox Christianity was developed after the book of Mormon.

True, but not deceptive. Many countercultists rip genuine Mormon teaching that is considered advanced theology from its context and sensationalize it, and take poorly-supported speculation as if it were the ordinary stuff of sermons and Sunday School.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 5:35 PM

I am unsure you really want to go there. Unlike the Bible which has and is used by archeologists for a litany of reasons, the Book of Mormon is so inaccurate that the Smithsonian has stated that it has not nor will it ever use it as a source for any archeological digs. Sadly, Mormon archeologists who tried to prove BofM acknowledge complete failure as well.

The Book of Mormon plagiarizes KJV and honestly, try to build those boats that those people supposedly used to get to the Americas. It is downright inconceivable to have them even function

I don’t want to get into a discussion about whether the Book of Mormon is true or not, or credible or not.

One commenter rather acidly observed that it the Book of Mormon was the one book which it was respectable to criticize without ever having read.

To use an analogy, it is perfectly acceptable to decide whether to buy a movie ticket or a book based on a review, although it’s considered wiser to consult two or three independent reviewers.

However, if one is claiming to be a reviewer, it is negligent to crib from other reviewers without seeing or reading the work itself. It’s folly to write up a review that is obviously cribbed and offers up howlers that betray that one has not actually seen or read the work. And it’s dishonest to pose as an expert after having written up and published such as review.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 6:52 PM

However, if one is claiming to be a reviewer, it is negligent to crib from other reviewers without seeing or reading the work itself. It’s folly to write up a review that is obviously cribbed and offers up howlers that betray that one has not actually seen or read the work. And it’s dishonest to pose as an expert after having written up and published such as review.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 6:52 PM

More diversionary tactics. Reading the book of Mormon won’t itself give you any insight into whether or not it is historically accurate – which was Puritan’s point. But we’ve seen this repeatedly – y’all keep trying to change the point.

Reminds me when people were pointing out what Obama’s church believed. What was the media’s response? You’re racist for even bringing it up. Never mind the question: are these things actually true?

And if you merely bring up what Mormonism actually teaches, they call you a bigot (hoping they can distract you from asking the question: but is this actually true?).

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 7:25 PM

And if you merely bring up what Mormonism actually teaches, they call you a bigot (hoping they can distract you from asking the question: but is this actually true?).

IcedTea on March 17, 2012 at 7:25 PM

Sadly, this is more true than not. It is funny that Christianity can be made fun of, poked at and that is a-okay. Bring out an honest discussion about another religion….you are a bigot.

Sigh!!!!

PuritanD71 on March 17, 2012 at 8:09 PM

Of course, their is an anti-mormon bias that exists in the south…It didn’t take long for the Perry campaign to play to the bias with the pastor who used the “cult” word…Did Perry apologize? No matter

Nozzle,

There is an anti-mormon bias – period. The first time I heard that Mormonism is a cult was up north and I grew up in the south. I know you want to assume that it’s the slow, country, low intellectuals in the south but unfortunately that’s not the case. Do I care that he’s a Mormon? No. His Mormon faith isn’t what concerns me. What concerns me about him is I really don’t know where he stands on way too many issues. I have to hope (and pray) that a conservative Congress is able to keep him in check.

And to the person that wishes that evangelicals would drop out of the GOP, try winning an election without us. Evangelicals aren’t what’s wrong with the GOP – for the most part, they are one of the best selling points that the GOP has. Be mindful that SOMEONE is going to work at accommodating the Evangelical bloc, be glad it’s the GOP. It would be entertaining to watch you go it alone but it definitely wouldn’t be beneficial for you.

BDev on March 17, 2012 at 10:30 PM

“low intellectuals” —> I meant to say something else…people with low I.Q.s maybe? lol

BDev on March 17, 2012 at 10:32 PM

More diversionary tactics. Reading the book of Mormon won’t itself give you any insight into whether or not it is historically accurate – which was Puritan’s point. But we’ve seen this repeatedly – y’all keep trying to change the point.

How can you tell the honest and well informed non-believers, from the honestly misinformed, from the well-informed liars, from those who are both ignorant and deceitful, unless you yourself are well informed? That’s a general question that applies to literary criticism, diet plans and political candidacies as well as controversial religions.

Confutus on March 17, 2012 at 10:40 PM

BDev on March 17, 2012 at 10:30 PM

BDev, I never said the GOP should go without the so-called evangelical vote…I was merely addressing what I perceive as the closed-mindedness of some groups when it comes to mormons. In particular, those who like to throw out the “cult” moniker. I think Utah is one of the best states in the union for a lot of reasons. And, since it was established and built by mormons, I give them a lot of credit for that. I’m not interested in parsing the book of mormon, I tend to look at the results of these persons of faith. Their church is dedicated to Jesus Christ, I’m not sure how one finds a problem with that but many many do…Ok. I recommend a couple of things. For those who are curious, take a vacation to Utah. See for yourself what these fine people built. And secondly, please select the best candidate to beat the man who celebrates Rhamadan in the Whitehouse. The man who declared America is no longer a christian nation. The man who is at war with all things American. Our history, traditions and way of life. Please don’t not vote for Mitt because of his faith. That is my main point…

Nozzle on March 18, 2012 at 11:05 AM

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