Reprinted from May 16, 2012. It shouldn’t surprise many people that most members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, commonly referred to as Mormons, are politically conservative. Indeed, LDS Church members believe that the Constitution of the United States is a divinely inspired document, and that adherence to its original meaning constitutes living according to God’s will. Church members adhere to a strict code of morality, which includes not just matters of sex outside of marriage, but extends to personal areas such as how they dress in public, what they view, and even what they ingest into their bodies.
Much whispering behind the scenes has been accumulating because GOP Presidential Nominee Mitt Romney is not only a high profile Mormon, but a very dedicated member and leader of the church. While Romney endures off-mic rumor and innuendo for his membership in the LDS Church, the arguably second most powerful politician in the nation, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, receives not an utterance about his lifelong membership in the same church.
What is the difference between Mitt Romney and Harry Reid? Politically speaking, the two couldn’t be further apart on almost every issue. On religious and moral issues, however, some might suggest they are kindred spirits—not most LDS Church members, but others might.
In fact, much of what Harry Reid espouses in his public life is repugnant to LDS-Christian doctrine. High taxes, exorbitant debt, burdensome governmental intrusion and regulation into the lives of citizens, socialistic schemes, anti-family policies, welfare dependence, the funding of anti-Christian arts, organizations and lifestyles are only the tip of a burgeoning and murky iceberg that is growing exponentially beneath the waters of American society under the leadership of Reid and his hard left associates.
So how does Harry Reid justify his political views and his divergence from the basic tenets of Mormonism? “I don’t believe in abortion,” is his explanation.
That’s it? He doesn’t support abortion in his political life?
I disagree that Harry Reid’s stated opposition to abortion is enough to save him (in a secular or religious way). Like congressmen who attach their pork barrel projects to bills they know will pass without their votes then quietly vote against them so they can claim fiscal responsibility while collecting campaign contributions for success at “bringing home the bacon,” Harry Reid is only fooling himself that he is a good LDS Church member.
There is a reason that most LDS Church members are conservative. It is a question of morality and personal liberty for them. Harry Reid has supported every anti-American, anti-family, anti-decency piece of legislation that has come down the pike. He is responsible for nearly every dollar of the $15.7 trillion debt—and in case he doesn’t understand it, debt robs liberty and creates poverty. Although he personally votes against direct abortion legislation, he supports candidates and elected officials whom he knows will support it—and that’s supporting it.
So what is the real difference between Mitt Romney and Harry Reid regarding their membership in the LDS Church? On the surface, anyway, the difference is that Romney reflects his religious values in his policies while Reid utterly tramples them in his.
For Harry Reid, and all of those who make a pretense of following Judeo-Christian principles while leading our nation, and indeed, the Western world down a path of fiscal and moral destruction, let me share a scripture that you might recognize, and find helpful in your future career.
“I know your works, that you are neither cold nor hot: I would you were cold or hot. So then because you are lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spew you out of my mouth.” Revelation 3:15-16.
Kelly Peters says
I’ve heard that the Democratic Party has changed over the years. At one point the LDS church even encouraged diversity in political parties, especially in Utah. I would go out on a limb and say that today any LDS democrat should not qualify for or be worthy for a temple recommend because they affiliate themselves and support those that are against the church’s standards. Simply put they support debt, homosexuality and abortion to name a few. I would also say that any democratic LDS person is a hypocrite and doesn’t have any leg to stand on.
Steven Wilden says
There are many good LDS Democrats, other than Harry Reid. The current leader of the LDS Church, Thomas S. Monson, is said to be a traditional Democrat. My former bishop in Idaho is a Democrat, and my own father and grandfather have generally voted Democrat. My father now realizes that the current Democrat party policies are more harmful than good. He also voted for the conservatives Ronald Reagan and Mitt Romney. In recent years and today, the Democrats are changing. Those Democrats I mentioned above do not support what is going on in their old party today. Thomas Jefferson, founder of the Democrats, would roll over in his grave and denounce the current state of his party. Being married to a European LDS woman and having traveled in Europe, I have learned that the LDS people there are more conservative than liberal (in the modern sense) overall. The trend toward liberalism is growing it is true, due to the socialist led governments and education available in most European countries and a liberal CNN led Amer-Euro press. They have been given the pro liberal line for some time. It is interesting to note that Fox News is not broadcast in Europe on the regular television channels, as far as I am aware of. Some have accepted the false notion that Democrats are somehow more sensitive to Christian values or people’s needs. This is because the Democrats tax and through money at people for votes. It is interesting to note that current Democrat and Socialistic policies lead to more suffering, unemployment, self indulgence and poverty in every case. Yes, irresponsible and self centered free enterprise can lead to financial woes as well. Freedom, moral values, responsible free enterprise, liberal (not as currently understood) and technical education, individual development and hard work, unfettered by government, are the only way to improve a nation, a community, a family and a person. It is plainly obvious when one sees the destruction of Biblical and Christian values and human liberty going on in America and in European nations today. The Democrats once upheld moral values and human liberty in America. They no longer do overall as evidenced by their policies and programs. They support big government, moral relativism, financial debt, class opposition, racial politics and demonize our religious or moral values in government. Of course officially, the federal government of the USA supports human rights, even to the point of elevating the demands of LGBT or sexual deviants to that which is equivalent to the traditional family. No nation in history has long survived this trend. Don’t be amazed, the student in the Netherlands is one of those that has accepted the liberal views growing around him as they are taught in the schools and broadcast over the news. We will all suffer if we continue in this direction. Steven Wilden, Bremerton, WA
Steven Wilden says
correction: This is because the Democrats tax and throw money at people for votes.
I am an LDS Church member from Utah, heart of Mormonvill USA. I would like to just point out that there are legitimate points of view when it comes to church members being Liberal, AND conservative. HOWEVER a persons conduct is always something that should stay close to the tenants of their faith, even if they believe that enacting the tenants of their faith on others isn’t such a good idea. Harry Ried is not a good person, and because of that i think he needs to have a serious sit down talk with his bishop about what he needs to do going forward. Dont get me wrong, i am Conservative my self, very much so in fact, however i can see how some people can support SOME liberal policy’s and still hold strong to the church. Those people being not nearly as suspicious of government action as most Americans are. However going to ether extreme, anarchist on the right, and Progressive on the left, would put you well outside of the church’s boundaries and you will be held accountable for your actions and beliefs that are contrary to your faith before god. thats my perspective on the whole “Church and Politics” thing.
As a curious student from the Netherlands who is also a member of the LDS Church I came across this article. I am always amazed to see American members of the church use gospel doctrine to justify being extremely conservative and thus republican. I am amazed for two reasons as the members of the church I have met in many other countries say that the democrats are much more Christlike.
All I can say is… church and state are seperate. You can’t judge, or try to judge, someone on it’s political ideas. I am not an American, so I don’t support either political side, I’m just interested in politics.
Diederik: Thank you for your comment. Yes, we also know several Europeans who have immigrated to the US and do not understand the essentials of personal liberty–so we understand your problem. Trying to explain the concept of personal liberty to someone who lives under the tight scrutiny of government and is discouraged from personal excellence by government policies should be simple, but we find that once the mindset of Big Brother government is established in a person, that person becomes numb to its detrimental effects. Let us just direct your attention to the explosive growth in America for its first 150 years, before “progressives” began to undermine it. The US was elevated from a third world colony to the world’s leading super power in a short time because personal liberty, including the right to accumulate what you built and earned, was guaranteed by our Constitution, and the people had the will to enforce its mandates. Enemies of personal liberty — the kind that have all but destroyed Europe (economies, morals, families, etc.) — have taken over the US, and Americans who understand the value of personal liberty are struggling to restore that foundation. For an LDS person, it may be useful for you to study that aspect of your religion that declares the Constitution of the US to be inspired of God, and that God was behind the establishment of the US, so that religious freedom would accommodate the restoration of the gospel and the Church in the days preceding the Second Coming of Christ.
Stephanie/ Plesiosaur says
Being an American is awesome, but we certainly aren’t the only ones that can fathom the value of personal liberty. To say that to a Dutch guy in particular, is ridiculous. The Dutch were among the first nations in the world to embrace religious freedom. The Netherlands was *the* safe haven for many of the Enlightenment authors that inspired the American Founding Fathers. And within living history the Dutch have experienced tyranny and oppression first hand, many of them sacrificing their lives in defense of the liberty of their neighbors. So….if anything, Americans don’t grow up with the value of personal liberty that many Europeans do. “You don’t know what you have until its gone.” Americans don’t know what that feels like, the nations overtaken by the Third Reich do.
I am a dyed in the wool Mormon Texan, and I agree 100% with what Diederik said.
A good Mormon would not have said the awful things Reid said about Romney during the campaign.
You do not understand other possible ways of looking at things. The two are not that different, nor is one more valiantly righteous than the other. They are pursuing their own view of how to best address the problems facing the nation. Harry Reid’s faith is strong, as is his commitment, but Mormonism does not impose such a narrow minded view of things. Liberty and pursuit of happiness are key, but no one political ideology has the pure truth of God. Compassion, mercy, care for the poor and less fortunate are also lessons that Christ taught. God created this life for us full of apparent paradoxes. Learning to navigate and find the truths of the gospel, to support agency, but to lift those less fortunate than ourselves. The roles of government, societies, individuals, and business are not fixed or constant, but a never ending dance. The ebb and flow of each with changing roles and needs of each need to be considered. The mix is not static, but a paradoxical maze that needs constant review, compassion, and wisdom. Yesterday’s answers are different from today’s, which will be different from tomorrow’s just as the problems change. There are principles to be considered, and the right solution for one situation with its accompanying times, magnitude, and suffering, will not be the same each time. The scriptures show righteous rulers providing for the welfare of their people in a variety of ways. To claim otherwise is clear proof that one has not understood or read them.
Dear Confused–we disagree with your premise. Indeed, the two are diametrically opposed. If you were to read the LDS Church’s Book of Mormon you would find that the two political approaches are fully defined in its pages containing the history of two divergent populations–high taxation and government regulation is described as evil, and a tool of Satan and his minions to enslave humanity. Indeed, wherever socialism has been implemented, it enslaves its citizens and forbids the free and open worship of God and His Son. Those who seek to impose socialism on populations always wrap it in a covering of mercy and care for the less fortunate–offering them a steady diet of government handouts in exchange for their sovereignty. This is how populations are enslaved, and how individuals become the property of the state. Property and freedom are confiscated from some, in the name of compassion, and given to others. The givers receive no benefit because they give not from the heart, and the receivers of this confiscated property are never strengthened, but are always weakened. In our article of July 13, 2012 Democrats Destroying Minorities, we supplied compelling evidence that social programs of the left, lately led by Harry Reid and his comrades, are the very cause of most of the poverty, misery and social injustice extant in this great nation. It is shameful how our minority brothers and sisters have been forced back onto the plantations that the Democratic party created and defended to the very last minute before losing to the Republicans (who are not the great defenders of Constitutional government that they once were). Read that article, and watch the video embedded therein, then write us and tell us that liberals and conservatives are simply approaching the issues with equal care, but from differing philosophies. Publius
Thomas Clement says
Consider the scripture Matthew 25:
32 And before him shall be gathered all nations: and he shall separate them one from another, as a shepherd divideth his sheep from the goats:
33 And he shall set the sheep on his right hand, but the goats on the left.
34 Then shall the King say unto them on his right hand, Come, ye blessed of my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world:
41 Then shall he say also unto them on the left hand, Depart from me, ye cursed, into everlasting fire, prepared for the devil and his angels:
The conservatives (a.k.a as Republicans) commonly called the RIGHT and the liberals (a.k.a. Democrats) commonly called the LEFT.
It cannot be any clearer than that. A comparison between the Lambs, and the goats.
Harry is NO lamb. And I don’t even have to judge him in this regard. He has already made his bed, in which he must lie.
Consider this. The law of the land demands that every year a budget be created, and implemented. Who is the one person who is holding back passing a budget “against the law of the land”?
12 We believe in being subject to kings, presidents, rulers, and magistrates, in obeying, honoring, and sustaining the law.
Honor the president we must, but break the law we must not. I think Harry is in over his head.
This article brings up a good point, after all, by their fruits ye shall know them…..he will have to answer to a higher power one day,…Good luck with that Harry!
Which brings up another good point … judge not that ye be not judged … good luck with that Diana!
There is sufficient room within the LDS Church for a broad range of political differences of opinion without taking the pejorative tack of calling a person’s right to membership in the Church into question. There is nothing in Senator Harry Reid’s political positions that would be grounds to call him before a Disciplinary Council to consider his membership in jeaopardy. Everything stated in this article can stand as stated (and I can agree with) but “Failure to Excommunicate” is completely uncalled-for and provocative in the extreme.
The editors would remind you that Harry Reid went before the national press for the specific purpose of lying about Mitt Romney’s failure to file tax returns for 10 years–full well knowing that he was lying about it. Lying to destroy a church member’s reputation is a very serious matter–and it brings dishonor and disdain upon the church and the body of the high priesthood. Like all leftists, Harry Reid lies every day as he misrepresents the underlying purposes of the political policies he advocates and the easily foreseeable results that they will bring to our nation. As a leftist Harry Reid seeks to steal liberty and property of innocent citizens. A professional liar has no place in a Christian church.
Exactly right, his views and support with the President doesn’t belong to any Christian Church.
Satan is the Father of all lies, We believe it is not possible to serve 2 Masters. Harry Reid and his lies do not represent the values We live as Members of the Church. Excommunication is usually reserved for Moral issues such as infidelity in Marriage or Murder…..the most grievous types of Sins. If He hasn’t transgressed in that way the Church will most likely not ever excommunicate Him. But his constant Lying proves which Master he is really serving. A Wolf trying to hide under Sheep’s clothing perhaps. He will get his, Vengeance is mine sayeth the Lord.
Don’t worry, eventually it will all hit the fan for Harry!
Harry Reid has been systematically working to pull the constitution apart thread by thread. Any member of any church can conveniently fool themselves into thinking that their actions are on the up and up. A church leader cannot excommunicate a member who wants to believe they are right even when they are wrong. If Reid can answer all the questions the way he is suppose to, then how can a leader question his rights to be a member? Harry Reid can put up a righteous facade, one that keeps excommunication at bay, but if he were to adopt the integrity to see the WHOLE truth, he could find that his membership in the church might be questionable. That being said, no one has the right to judge Harry Reid’s worthiness to be a member of his church. Only the leaders have that right, and most importantly God the Father, and He is never fooled.
Thomas Clement says
No actually not even the leader have right to judge Harry. Harry has already judged himself. It is to himself he will answer the age old question: Who’s on the Lord’s Side WHO?
I have to contradict your statement.
I’m not going to say what they ought to do, but in fact his local and regional/national leaders DO have the right, and responsibility, to judge Harry. It is laid out very clearly in the Doctrine & Covenants 107:58-84. As far as the Church is concerned.
They will act only as they feel warranted. None of the rest of us, no matter how outraged, have a say.