American voters are not obligated to disregard a candidate’s faith doctrines when entering the voting booth. Face faith or sweep it under the table? That is the choice. To some faith doesn’t matter, to others it’s the only thing that matters. Religious beliefs influence decision-making throughout life. Ultimately, this is religion’s most dynamic function. Under religious tradition Mormon candidates are presumed to have a clear duty to the LDS General Authority.
Doctrinal suppression of communication by LDS leadership places a cloud over Mitt Romney’s candidacy and LDS integrity. September 25, 2012 the Daily Beast reported Mormon Blogger David Twede faced church censure and possible excommunication for his politically driven statements tying Mormon Church doctrines, secular ambitions and political history to Mitt Romney’s belief in those doctrines and his political ambitions.
Given Mitt Romney still holds the office of High Priest in the LDS church, he may find that he answers to a higher power (i.e., the LDS prophet) more than to the US voters says David Twede—a fifth generation Mormon.
In October 2011 I submitted Romney and Mormon’s Silent Vulnerability: the Tipping Point to several news outlets echoing divided allegiance and the appearance of potential bias.The opinion editorial went unpublished and ignored by everyone who received it. Let’s revisit and raise same issue.
- If Romney is elected President of the United States will his devotion to LDS authority entail a conflict of interest? Does allegiance to one mean infidelity to the other? (October 2011-Tipping point) This subject is treated in the upcoming book Mormons of the Lie by Ronald J. Washington, MD.
- If he were elected, would the LDS church influence President Mitt Romney to administer its agenda? (David Twede September 2012)
Unraveling the mystery won’t be easy. However, history may supply an answer. Joseph Smith, founder of Mormonism and author of the Book of Mormon, intended to establish a theocracy. His campaign for the US Presidency was cut short by his untimely death.
For that reason two possible explanations for the relationship between candidates and LDS leadership emerge. First, the leadership may manipulate the candidates. Or perhaps, the candidates manipulate the leadership. Both are terrifying. The first is awful; the second is much more frightening. Both may be true.
Where leadership and governance embraces a sense of vision informed by faith, sidestepping or mute silence will not suffice.