I’ll have to defer to any LDSers in the readership here, since my Mormon theology is, to say the very least, weak. I will say that it’s not exactly a shock to hear that a prominent member of a church or sect either doesn’t know or may not subscribe to all the tenets of the church or sect to which he belongs. My own Southern Baptists had a knock-down drag out back in the 1980s over basic theology and doctrine, my conservative side more or less won, but most of the more liberal folks who were disputing some basic tenets stayed put in the SBC. Some, like Jimmy Carter, eventually left. He hasn’t been missed.
And then there’s the head of the Anglican church, Rowan Williams, disputing pretty much the entire Christmas birth story.
So there’s all that to consider here. Still, if the founding head of your church claims to have spoken directly with God, and you say that he didn’t, you have at the very least a problem to work out with your own church and you’ll probably hear from the elders. As a non-Mormon, I really don’t care all that much, though I’d be a little more careful than Mitt is here to claim that God hasn’t spoken to anyone directly since Moses. The Gospels themselves sort of militate against that, if you accept the divinity of Jesus.
Update (AP): Team Romney sends this quote:
Pre-Eminent Mormon Scholar Says Governor Romney’s Comment Doesn’t Contradict LDS Church. “Jan Shipps, one of the pre-eminent Mormon scholars, says Romney’s comment doesn’t contradict LDS Church beliefs because he mentions that God spoke to ‘some others,’ and he didn’t just leave it at Moses.” (Thomas Burr, “Comment Appears At Odds With LDS Faith,” Salt Lake Tribune, 12/22/07)