Last week I wrote HERE about Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith and how his Mormonism was perceived by both Democrat and Republican voters. Today, I came across an interesting piece in the LA Times discussing the reactions of candidates Michele Bachmann and Herman Cain to the assertion of a pastor in Dallas, Texas with ties to RIck Perry that Mormonism is nothing but an unchristian cult.
When asked to respond to the pastor’s remarks, neither Bachmann or Cain rose to the bait. Neither Bachmann, nor Cain agreed with the pastor’s statements when asked. Of course, that doesn’t necessarily mean that they disagreed either. As is often the case with candidates for any office, both of them sidestepped the question, but had totally different approaches.
I was actually surprisingly impressed with Bachmann’s response; she framed the Mormon issue as one of religious tolerance, which is something that has to be important to her as a fundamentalist Christian.
Cain’s answer to the question didn’t impress me so much; he said that he was not running for “the theologian in chief.” He also stated the obvious fact that Romney was a Mormon, while he, Cain, was a Christian.
Romney has said that he believes that Jesus Christ is our Lord and savior, but that he is also a firm believer in his Mormon faith.
The LA Times article detailed some of the differences between the religious beliefs of an evangelical christian like Michele Bachmann and a Mormon such as Mitt Romney.
To some evangelicals, the differences between Christianity and Mormonism cannot be papered over. Mormons, for example, believe that God and Jesus have bodies of flesh and bone and have taken human form. They teach that God, Jesus, and the Holy Ghost are independent, and not a unified Trinity as orthodox or traditional Christians believe.
As mentioned by the LA Times, the differences between the two religions are not insignificant, but it is interesting to me that many of the same fundamentalist Christians who cry that they are being discriminated against because of their religion have so little tolerance for the religions of others. Their common lack of respect for those with different religions or no religions including Muslims, Jews, and atheists coupled with their common disregard for the separation of church and state.
The only problem that I would personally have with Romney’s Mormonism is if he were to further blur the lines between church and state. Religious tolerance is one thing, but allowing a religious body to sway the governance of a country is quite another thing entirely. The Mormon church’s track record with Proposition 8 does not speak volumes for the church’s ability to stay out of government affairs.