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{LDSL Blog} Mormon Republicans vs. Mormon Democrats

Kate Ensign-Lewis - October 04, 2012

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There may be more of us Mormons on one side of the spectrum, but that doesn't mean there's only one right way to vote. In fact, both parties emphasize gospel principles; if we only reached across the aisle more often, we might realize that.

Harry Reid (Mormonism’s most famous Democrat) recently asserted that Mitt Romney (our most famous Republican) is not the face of Mormonism. When we ran the article last Tuesday, many of our readers responded. And as usually happens in comments that imply taking a side, things got a little heated.

Too often we vilify the “other” political party—and too often conservative Mormons (and let’s face it—that’s most of us) vilify Democrats. (I know it goes the other way, too.) Sometimes we even question each other’s testimonies because of our political beliefs. This is silly and, quite simply, un-Christlike—there is a true gospel, but there is no “one true” political party. In fact, I think both parties espouse important gospel truths—which is why we have Mormons on both sides of most debates.

I have a theory of why we Mormons choose the political parties we do. The theory is based solely on gospel principles and ideals—not on agendas or special interests. Basically, it comes down to AGENCY and LOVE.

Some Mormons fall on the right of the spectrum (“conservative,” “Republican,” or even “Libertarian” in the U.S.). They fall here because the party emphasizes AGENCY—freedom for the people to choose how they live and where they put their money and resources, without being compelled. They believe the government should be small, and its biggest responsibility is to ensure people maintain their power of choice.

Other Mormons fall on the left of the spectrum (“liberal” or “Democrat” in the U.S.). They fall here because the party emphasizes LOVE, in the form of helping the poor or disadvantaged and generally being more accepting of different minorities. They believe the government’s biggest responsibility is to give people opportunities for success and ensure a better life for all citizens, and they emphasize finding new ways to do so through programs and projects.

Both of these principles are fundamental in the gospel, and that's not to say that people who choose one party don't also firmly believe in the other party's guiding principle. They simply have different beliefs about what the government's most important responsibilities are and which principles are better emphasized.

The theory is simplistic, yes, but from the conversations I’ve had with Mormons on both sides, it fits pretty well on an idealistic level. I know some people choose political parties because of a few very specific platforms, but I would hope that's not true for Mormons. I honestly think that most of us Mormons think of these things in a gospel sense—which party is truest to the foundations of how we live Christ’s gospel. We ran a great article last year that touches on this very idea.

In short, we choose our political parties BECAUSE of our LDS beliefs, not in spite of them.

So, this leaves us with the final question: Does the theory work for you? Why do you fall on the political spectrum where you do? How is it informed by your beliefs?

And, although I can hope it’s unnecessary, it's better safe than sorry to request: Please, if you refer to other commenters or the "other" political party, remember to be civil. There’s a saying I once heard that fits in this situation and goes something like this: you don’t have truth, and I don’t have truth—but together, we can come to a greater truth. There are good people across the political spectrum, and we all have something to learn from reaching across the aisle—whether that be in church or in politics.

- -
Kate Ensign-Lewis is an online editor with LDS Living, a wife, and a mother to an adorable one-year-old. She enjoys talking about politics, although she still hasn’t been able to figure out which party fits her best—which is why she is a registered Independent.

© LDS Living, 2012.
Comments 41 comments

kathycopper said...

08:09 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I am so thankful to read these comments. Quite frankly, I have had to bite my tongue and not become judgemental of other Mormons who I have respected in the past but who have demonstrated the real spirit of contention. I have read and heard such awful untrue and uninformed things about our president from these very same mormons (who I love!)that it has caused great heartache. We need AS A PEOPLE need to BE more informed and not to spread garbage. The spirit of contention is not of me-- Christ said. Reaching across the aisle and across our differences and coming together in the true spirit of love is the end goal! Come on people! After al we have the same goals and we are brothers and sisters.

irish said...

09:20 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I respectfully disagree..... while neither party is perfect, one must examine the respective party's principles and policies. Ask yourself which embraces and encourages Abortion, Homosexual Marriage, Sexual Promiscuity, Reliance on the Government, Illegal Activities (Illegal Aliens), deference of the (inspired) US Constitution, and holds the principle and beliefs of the Mormon church with ridicule and contempt. Lastly, just because someone expects a person to live at a higher standard doesn't mean that they don't love them and aren't willing to see them improve and get-ahead.

robokenn said...

09:35 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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Thank you for your article. As advised by church leadership, we should study the issues and seek our Father in Heaven's guidance as to who we should vote for. Too often I've heard people at church treating politics as part of our religion. The gospel is true. Jesus Christ is our redeemer and path back to our Heavenly Father. Democrats are not the anti-christ and Republicans are not the second coming. They are people. Children of our Heavenly Father. Our brothers and sisters, trying to do what they feel is best for our country. It is our duty to study and pray as we see best, and not because of propaganda from either side has clouded our eyes and allowed us to give up our agency.

grams said...

10:01 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I agree whole heartedly with this article and prior to Sen. Reid's hateful comments about Gov. Romney's taxes and possible questionable criminal tax evasion, I had no feelings on his testimony either. While I am trying very hard not to be judgemental about Mr. Reid, I have had to explain his behavior to non-members of my family who found his "attacks" to be very unmormonlike,their words, and actually shocked them. I'm greatful that Romney acted in accordance to our Gospel standards and didn't say anything in his responses about Mr. Reid. That has confirmed to me his standards and gospel behavior versus that of Mr. Reid's.

justlearning said...

10:02 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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We seem to forget that we belong to a world wide church where most of us are neither Republican nor Democrat. I feel it is time we stopped judging each other by our political views and started recognizing that the gospel of Jesus Christ has room for all of his children no matter what type of government we live under.

flyer66 said...

10:03 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I agree with Irish. I am personally tired of hearing about how we should go across the aisle and learn from one another. That might be true for a few things but as a whole, it cannot happen. If a person votes democrat then he/she is also voting for those things and much more that "Irish" wrote in his/her comments. It makes no difference what they say they believe because it is part of the party platform and like it or not your vote is for those things. It is easy to see what side the author comes in on. A "conserative", which I am, does NOT need to be far right in order to believe in "agency". That was given to me by our loving Heavenly Father and not by the Democrat Party. It is true that the Republican Party is not perfect but it does believe in those founding principles that our Founding Fathers brought forth when God brought this nation out of darkness and gave it to us for our land of inheritance. I love my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ and I will not knowingly cast a vote for the things that the Democrat Party stands for.

sean.jorgensen said...

10:11 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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When Latter-day Saints from opposite sides of the political spectrum debate each other, I agree that the 'lefties' tend to emphasize love while the 'righties' tend to emphasize agency. Overall, though, I don't think the theory works. First, I would observe that both sides emphasize both points, but in different ways. As you mentioned, righties emphasize agency in their advocacy of small government. However, lefties also emphasize agency when they speak out against legislating morals. And while lefties emphasize love when defending entitlement programs, righties emphasize love when arguing that private charities and churches are better at caring for the poor. Personally, I'm a strong LDS lefty. Both agency and love are fundamental aspects of my political philosophy. I attribute the divide between LDS lefties and LDS righties to two factors. The first and less important factor is values voting. Many members simply aren't willing to consider Democratic policies due to the party's pro-choice, pro-Gay marriage tendencies. The second and more complex factor is our various approaches to philosophical issues in general. I believe that left-leaning Latter-day Saints have stronger skeptical tendencies than right-leaning Latter-day Saints. Quite simply, they are more willing to question the Church, and are thus more open to political ideologies that initially seem to conflict with the Church's moral values. This skeptical tendency can be dangerous, of course, but the alternative tendency (not to question) can also have side effects. In my opinion, right-leaning Latter-day Saints are more likely to become dogmatic in both religion and politics. I am not saying any of this to criticize either side, but to share my own opinions and experiences about our various tendencies. In the end, I think that left-leaning Latter-day Saints come to have more nuanced, more flexible political philosophies. The philosophy I espouse is Rawlsian social contract theory, which is the theory I find most compatible with the gospel. I look to this secular theory because the Constitution and, I believe, the gospel do not permit me to unilatterally apply my religion to social policy. In my opinion, right-leaning Latter-day Saints come far too close to doing just that. Morover, those I have talked to in-depth have not been willing to consider the merits of social contract theory, or of secular political philosophy in general. In doing so, they somewhat ironically tend to rely on broadly libertarian theories. So, in sum, I attribute the difference between LDS lefties and righties to their willingness or lack of willingness to consider various secular political philosophies. Again, I do not wish to criticize my fellow Latter-day Saints whose opinions fall on the opposite side of the political spectrum. I'm sure many of them do have carefully nuanced arguments - I simply wished to share my experiences and opinions in response to your questions.

debmilam said...

10:18 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I believe it does come down to agency, Government should not "exercise control or dominion or compulsion upon the souls of the children of men, in any degree of unrighteousness." George Washington was the best example of Righteous dominion, a godly leader. Modern leaders must follow his example. More important is how we treat others and how we seek God's point of view in all things. This election is important but what we learn and what we become is more important. Today, I pray to Heavenly Father in the name of Jesus Christ that members of the church (and all Americans) are sober and quick to observe as Mormon and as faithful and merciful as Moroni. God's words will all be fulfilled and His work will roll forth. All that is now before us will pass away and the inevitable day when we see God face to face approaches. Will we be ready? Will we say as Abraham, "thy servant hast sought thee diligently and has found thee" or will we be unprepared and in our discomfort excuse ourselves from His presence? The Book of Mormon is true scripture. Our lives and our dealings with God are just as important now as they were in Pioneer and Book of Mormon history. We are so blessed to live now. It is a shame that some are distracted and are missing out on participating in this wonderful exciting story.

coloradoran said...

10:31 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I do not accept the notion that seems to be endlessly repeated that democrats are "generally more accepting of minorities". This is a concept that democrats and the media states over and over. And now it seems that it is a "truth" because it has been stated so often. Of course I am referring to racial minorities.

sallyw said...

10:49 AM
on Oct 04, 2012

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Ditto to Irish. I also must respectfully, but strongly, disagree... specifically with the generally believed assertion that the Democratic party has a market on LOVE, "in the form of helping the poor or disadvantaged and generally being more accepting of different minorities." In the first case, Republicans DO help the poor and disadvantaged! In fact, they give a higher percentage of their income to charity than Democrats do. We all want to help the poor and needy. The difference is that conservatives just don't think it is the place of government, nor should it be compulsory (which is Satan's plan, by the way). Friends, family, churches, charitable organizations, etc., should be where we look to fill this need. I have witnessed first hand that instead of helping people help themselves, government social programs foster dependence. This is not love to me. In the second case, it was Republicans who faced much opposition and initially pushed for civil rights. It was Republicans who first appointed minorities to high level government positions. To say that Republicans don't accept all people of all races is just not true. I do agree that the Democratic party believes that it is government's role to "ENSURE (call it Socialism, Communism or again, Satan's plan) a better life for all citizens". Conservatives believe that it is government's role to keep people safe (life, liberty) so that they can PURSUE happiness.

mormongirl19 said...

12:35 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I am definitely a Democrat for that exact reason (love). Having been a missionary and an RS President has made minorities and welfare very close to my heart. I used to be Republican for the sheer fact of a couple of the "moral" issues mentioned, but I found thouse were not the number one issues for other Republicans. I became uncomfortable with extreme stances on immigration (their stance felt really uncompassionate to me), guns, and healthcare (having experienced socialized medicine firsthand, I loved the fact that it took care of all people, and I find the new law to be very mild and also welcome), to name a few, with a preference for the wealthy. I think the government is not an agency to be shunned but is a divinely inspired institution that is for our own good-- its overseeing powers to protect and defend are essential. And I found that even on the moral issues I didn't relate to the more extreme wing of the party (ie, NO abortion, period, not even life of mother or rape. Also, I think we have to be careful about forcing our own morality on others, another aspect of agency) So I found more listening ears for issues I'm passionate about in the Democratic party. Issues I think the Savior would care about-- being the great physician and undertprivileged advocate himself. I'm still anti-abortion and find abortion heinous. Something I will never support within the party. But there is good in both parties. Right now I choose the good in the Democratic party. I hope people will learn to respect my decision and we find that political ideology is less important that how we use it-- whether we treat eachother in a civil, Christlike way.

mormongirl19 said...

12:41 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I was taught in Political Science 101 at BYU that in the realm of politics, the far extreme left is Communism (not socialism), while the extreme right is Fascism, with its ultra nationalism, xenophobia, and elitism. Extreme politics IS a vice, no matter which side you are on, Barry Goldwater notwithstanding.

johntvalentine said...

01:29 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I with a heart felt love, compassion and respect. for all the above coments. I personally feel that it all boils down to that sacred piece of document called America's beloved, CONSTITUTION. I believe this sacred document is a precious gift from our Father in Heaven. WHY, why would any one even think not to except a gift from our Father in Heaven??? We should all be ever so grateful for such a sacred gift, America's beloved CONSTITUTION.

stacy600 said...

01:48 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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Why does my bishop refer me to our needy families' government-provided case workers when they are about to be homeless? Why am I directed, as a RS president, to contact government agenicies, by my bishop, to make sure these families are doing all they can to take care of themselves? I am a Democrat because I believe everyone deserves a safetynet. My own Republican bishop is directing me to help get assistance via caseworkers for our needy families from government agencies. This doesn not make sense to me. I am opposed to abortion. I am all for people being responsible for their own actions, but mental health concerns take up most of my time as a RS president. Most of the help for these people are coming from government agencies.

pixie said...

04:07 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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Part of this country's problem is that we are so divided between Rebpublicans and Democrats and neither side thinks that they are wrong. While we may not agree with all of the other side's (R or D) stances on certain subjects that may or may not be in line with our gospel teachings, we do need to remember that in the end we are all children of our Heavenly Father and we need to be mindful of others' heart and intentions not just their political stance. "United we stand, divided we fall." There are things we can learn from both sides and to believe that something created by man, not God is ignorance. To say we can't learn from the other side would be like saying that Mormon's have nothing to learn from non mormons. Truth is, we have much to learn from each other and if more people would open their minds and actually hear the other side (because we all have different experiences in life that give us new and different perspectives) instead of closing our minds and accepting nothing else, but our own opinions, then maybe this country could learn to work together on individual policies despite who suggested it (R or D), we might actually be able to progress instead of continuing our digression. The great thing about this life is that we do have AGENCY to choose R or D. The church has not taken an official stance so why should its members be required to take one. Those that say D's are not good members of the church or are wrong for exercising their agency and choosing something that doesn't match an R's view (AND visa versa), are blind to the true reason we are put here. To love each other as individuals and learn from each other and work together to return to our Father In Heaven. We don't have to agree with one another, but we have been commanded to love one another and with love comes respect and a degree of tolerance that shows love not hate or prejudice. We are all human and will make mistakes but it is up to us and God, not each other to make that call.

me2buc said...

09:59 PM
on Oct 04, 2012

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I honestly must say that I repent of my feelings toward other members of the church every single week. I have tried to understand how any Christian, let alone someone with the Gift of the Holy Ghost, could vote for such an iniquitous leader as President Obama. There isn't much that he stands for that is inline with the teachings of the church. I sometimes feel that people using the churches neutral stance on politics as a way to rationalize their vote, which is just about the same as the President using executive powers to get around the constitution. There is a reason that the church keeps a political neutral standing and a large part of it is that it has to under the law. Every person will stand accountable for the person they vote in government leadership positions. If one votes for someone that supports, late term, partial birth abortions, gay marriage, homosexuality and teaching homosexuality to kindergarteners, dependance on the government (evils of the dole), and other such evils, do they really think that they won't be held accountable for supporting such evil acts? While we all have different gifts of the spirit, discernment is one that should be sought if you are voting for someone with such opposing gospel views. It really shows where peoples real beliefs are. Living the gospel is more than just going to church on Sunday. I encourage any members of the church that support President Obama, the man that said he wants some of the charitable donations from religion to go to gay special interest groups, to read what words have been spoken about socialism, the dole, religious freedoms and self reliance before voting for this man in November. I will continue to repent for my feelings; please forgive me for feeling this way. If the conflicting views didn't affect me and my children and my children's children, I probably wouldn't take it so personal. I guess just as others are imperfect I am too. http://www.lds.org/search?lang=eng&query=socialism http://www.lds.org/search?query=dole&lang=eng

sleeperhold said...

06:45 AM
on Oct 05, 2012

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I agree. There are good intentions on both sides, and the spirit of contention helps no one. The liberal viewpoint however to help through forced taxation and government intervention, though well-intentioned in reality does not show love. True love for our fellow man would be focused on teaching a man to fish and not just giving him a fish forever. The parable of the talents shows what the Lord thinks should be the consequence of slothfulness.

kwg said...

09:29 AM
on Oct 05, 2012

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To everyone who thinks that Democrats are of the devil and have to repent of their feelings toward other members of the church every week, who think that anyone with any righteous inclinations at all could never vote for a Democrat--do you realize you are also thinking that about some of the general authorities you listen to in general conference? There are plenty of bishops, stake presidents, members of the 70, and--gasp!--even some apostles--who are left leaning. Are they all called by God to lead his Church AND following the devil at the same time? Hmmm...

imn2k9s said...

09:41 AM
on Oct 05, 2012

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I intend to vote for Romney not because he is LDS or republican, but because I believe that he is more likely than Obama (who has for years attended a church whose reverend preaches hatred) to be an inspired leader. I also beleive that the Constitution is an inspired document and anyone who will not uphold it is not defending the freedoms of this country. ALMA 59:13

mormongirl19 said...

01:55 PM
on Oct 05, 2012

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Just as I have found myself defending Mormonism the last few months and have been appalled at the hateful comments about Mormons in the forums, where I have felt people didn't really want to understand Mormonism but to simply criticize it and perpetuate hateful misconstructions of it, I feel the same way over the last few months trying to explain my very deeply felt and religious reasons for becoming a Democrat. Obama is just as religious as Romney in different ways. But you have to put yourself in his shoes to see it. So you have to ask yourself if you really want to understand why other good, faithful people such as yourself align themselves with the Democrats. It's okay to believe what you do politically, and to find that it is the right thing for you for the reasons that are important to you, but allow others to do the same without retribution, with kindness, love, and not with hate. And Democrats believe in the Constitution and freedom, too. But ever since our country was founded there have been differences of opinion on states rights vs. federal, and on different constructions of the Constitution. Thomas Jefferson and John Adams, two of our sacred founding fathers, had differences of opinion on these very subjects. So just because we believe differently doesn't make us evil, bad, or wrong. Maybe the point is we need to take what is good about all of us and learn to work together for the good of God's children.

crystalyo said...

04:45 PM
on Oct 05, 2012

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What a great article! That really says why I am an LDS Democrat on a nutshell. I'd say other issues that impact my party are my Church's emphasis on being good stewards of the Earth and the importance of education. I will make a greater effort to be more loving towards my Republican brothers and sisters. Those who are democrats may want to check out ldsdems dot org. We are an official state caucus of the Utah Democratic Party. To those who say they can't be Democrats because of abortion or gay marriage, remember that you don't have to agree with every tenant of a party's platform to be a member of it! The Republican Party doesn't line up perfectly either. FYI there are Mormon Democrats who are social conservatives on those issues and others who are social liberals. You are all welcome in our party!

crystalyo said...

04:53 PM
on Oct 05, 2012

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I would also love to say that the statement from Pixie is profound. Pixie -- if you're reading this, I would love to quote you from time to time. Please send me an email at hello at ldsdems dot org with your permission, if you are willing. Thankss!

vapor said...

08:25 AM
on Oct 06, 2012

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@me2buc: I have a hard time believing that your judgmental disdain for our President and his supporters can be justified by your weekly repentance. Your interpretation of the reasons for the Church's policy of political neutrality does not justify you in ignoring it. Attitudes like yours are the main reason LDS Democrats feel ostracized and unwelcome. I'm not trying to blast you, and I sincerely believe you're trying to do the right thing. However, the feelings you expressed are highly divisive and disturbing.

foxylds said...

12:01 AM
on Oct 07, 2012

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Reading the above comments I remember that without opposition there is no agency. With opposition we are actually required to think, yes even in the Church.

imjetta said...

07:45 PM
on Oct 07, 2012

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What you're missing here is the Constiutional foundation; the true conservative wants government to adhere to it's specifically stated constitutional role, while the left wants a government that will "love" in their behalf. You can't legislate morality and Christlike love. When government redistributes your money to me, it's bypassing your agency to give to me of your own will; maybe you don't WANT to give to me, but you want to give to Joe, but the government takes away your agency. That's Satan's plan, not Heavenly Father's, which is why He inspired the Constitution with limited government; your agency in full force.

imjetta said...

07:54 PM
on Oct 07, 2012

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@me2buc Amen!

salvar77 said...

09:36 PM
on Oct 07, 2012

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I disagree wholeheartedly with Irish. I am very conservative . I am very strict and unwavering when it come to commandments and doctrine . I am a democrat . I try my best live a higher . standard . I do not in any way believe that a my party does this "encourages Abortion, Homosexual Marriage, Sexual Promiscuity, Reliance on the Government, Illegal Activities (Illegal Aliens)' The correct way to stand for your high standards is to live them for your self and then teach them with doctrine . In this way you are not in danger of taking away free will or free agency . We all know that satan had that in mind in the beginning . As for immigration ,all Mormons have made covenants with God at baptism , we promish to make our brothers burdem lighter . It does not say check for papers first .

kwg said...

09:10 AM
on Oct 08, 2012

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@salvar77: "It does not say check for papers first." Love it!!

shatch1 said...

09:53 AM
on Oct 08, 2012

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I don’t see how any member of the church can vote democrat and still get a temple recommend. There is a question asked to all members seeking to obtain a recommend. It is: Do you support or affiliate with any group or individual that has teachings contrary to that of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints? If one votes democrat, then they are supporting a group and in Obama's case and Harry Reid's case, individuals, who have teachings that are contrary to that of the Church.

imjetta said...

10:45 AM
on Oct 08, 2012

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And @shatch1, that clearly is the case with the Democrat platform. The problem comes in when the Church encouraged members to be active in both parties; Pres. Faust was a Democrat. What they didnt' encourage was to accept the platforms of the parties, but to CHANGE the platforms to align with the Gospel. We can see that this didn't happen, and some of the very elect have accepted hook, line and sinker the very evils that are contrary to the Gospel.

bridget said...

12:07 PM
on Oct 09, 2012

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While both major political parties suffer from worldliness and wickedness, it's just impossible to agree with the Democrat platform, which includes supporting abortion and homosexuality. I'm not sure why any Mormon would want to associate with such a stance, but I can say that you are fooling yourself if you think the Democrats are for obeying the Lord. They're often against even acknowledging the Lord exists. This is not to say that the Republicans are putting their money where their mouth is — actually obeying the Lord in all things — but they are, at least, admitting God exists. Neither party is worthy of real regard, but if you had to choose between them, you certainly couldn't pick the Democrats. What we really need is to toss the two-party system and just vote for Christians who have a track record of obeying the Lord. (Yeah, it's not going to happen as long as humans are in control. It'll have to be the Millennium before we see any real progress like that, and that will be by the hand of the Lord. And, by the way, voting will be out. Anybody who wants to vote against the Lord can go the way of Coriantumr. In the Millennium, we won't have to hear people exalt their opinions over the word of God.)

r2t4 said...

12:09 PM
on Oct 09, 2012

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I personally do not feel that the democrat party is for the poor and needy. Though there may be some who do on all sides of the political spectrum, the party itself does not care about anyone except itself and the power it wields. This love thing is Not a democrat princple, but a princle instilled by God thru Jesus Christ alone. The rest is pure hogwash. Since we are NOT of this world, but only ambassadors according to the scripture, we should even be involved in politics at all. God is the one in charge. He raises up and brings down every King and ruler of any kind. To say "we" have some special ability to "help" God out is blasphmey to my way of thinking. We work within the framework of the gospel and the preaching of it and it alone. God has worked thru many different nations, governments and cultures since the beginning. Our first and formost job is to "live" and "preach" the gospel. Anything else is working for the world and it's god, the prince of the power of the air. We should reflect on who our leader really is. God or mammon.

goofygulch said...

07:52 AM
on Oct 10, 2012

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I think that we all need to remember one thing, and that is that the only truth that exists is the Gospel of Jesus Christ. Having said that, the church teaches us all what we must do to return to live with Him and our Father in Heaven. The church has the teachings for welfare, being industrious, being self sufficiant and self sustaining and this is the only place that these truths exist. We have all heard the old saying, "the church is a work house for the wicked not a reast home for the righteous". We are all taught the truth and are allowed to make our own decisions, just like with gospel. As a missionary I taught many that were great people but did not accept what I taught for their own reasons. While both poitical parties teach different things if you look at both of them they do both collectively encompase the teachings of the gospel: free-agency, caring for others, being self sufficiant,charity, love, life and happiness. However, just as in the case of Joseph Smith when seaking which church is true he was told they spoke many great things but their hearts were far from the Lord. Politics is ran by man, the Church is ran by God. At the end of the day we should all take a look at how important the Gospel of Jesus Christ is, if we were a religion ran by man we could easily see why their are so many religions out their. In the church we have many people that are strong in their testimony of prayer, others of Joseph Smith, others of Charity. This is all because of the influences upon their lives. Politics is no different, we fall in line with a political party because of what has influenced our lives and while we can be part of a political party and not agree with all of what they believe in we can all agree that we are members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints because it does contain the whole truth of how God wants his children to live. We all need to be more understanding of differnce, after all that is what the Church is made of.

realtalk723 said...

01:50 PM
on Oct 10, 2012

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To all of you that think the Democratic party is "evil" let's evaluate a couple scenarios. First, is former President Clinton the only man to have participated in adultery, I bet if you look around the room in your stake house you will see a couple men AND women who are just as guilty. Second, how many of your brothers and sisters (or CHILDREN) are homosexual? Are you going to love them any differently because they are happy and expressing who they really are or are you going to tell them to hide it to fit "the temple mold?"

bothsides said...

08:34 AM
on Oct 11, 2012

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There are a handful (at least!) of LDS general authorities who are strongly Democrat. James E. Faust is a good example of a pretty famous LDS Democrat. The church statement given in 1998 says members should be involved in the party "of their choice." That means that there's a choice. Elder Marlin K. Jensen gave a wonderful interview about having a robust two-party system. He was asked by the first presidency to speak to the SL Tribune about the church's political statement which asked members to be involved in the political party "of their choice." It has some wonderful insights into how a person can vote Democrat and be a good member, too. It was originally published in the Salt Lake Tribune and the transcript is found here: http://www.sunstonemagazine.com/pdf/111-82-87.pdf Enjoy!

teachtruthlight said...

10:18 AM
on Oct 11, 2012

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Ezra Taft Benson taught the proper and improper role of government and that politics and religion are intertwined. He showed us how to align ourselves politically and what to watch for. His warnings are consistent with the Book of Mormon and should not go ignored. We must be wise and discerning for the sake of freedom, truth, and righteousness.

johnrpack said...

09:27 AM
on Oct 13, 2012

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As a Mormon Libertarian, I can understand arguments on both sides. However, until Utah is a low-tax, balanced-budget state, I think the Republicans have a lot to repent of. If they actually governed the way they give speeches, I'd be OK with that.

soldiersmother said...

10:07 AM
on Oct 13, 2012

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When I saw the photo accompanying this article I was very concerned. Have we forgotten our flag etiquette? The American flag should NEVER touch the ground. When my son was in Iraq he kept a small properly folded American flag in his pocket every time he left his FOB (forward operating base). That flag along with the religious affiliation tag that accompanied his dog tags were sacred objects that never ceased to remind him of why he was putting himself in harms way each and every day he was there. The flag is a symbol of our country and the liberties we hold dear (all of us, Repbublicans AND Democrats) and should always be treated with the utmost RESPECT. I am sure the photographer who took this picture is a very talented one as is evidence by the photo, but perhaps an article on flag etiquette is in order.

soldiersmother said...

10:40 AM
on Oct 13, 2012

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Now that flag etiquette is covered. May I share some personal revelation? A couple of years ago, after my son returned from war, I found my faith in the political party I had been associated with over the last thirty years wavering. I realized they had become too extreme for me, didn't have all the answers as I thought they had, had been co-opted by media personalities that were more concerned with their own power and media ratings than they were with spreading truth, solving problems, and seemed to gain better ratings by causing as much contention as possible. After several weeks of soul searching and wondering if I had been wrong for the last thirty years I began to pray. On three separate occasions I received the same revelation " Both sides are right and both sides are wrong what matters is how you treat each other in the process." Yes, this is my personal revelation, but I have felt much freer in not feeling as if I have to prove a point to anyone, I just have to vote my conscience, and do the best to love others while they do the same. Heavenly Father is ultimately in control, perhaps this whole process is more about testing our ability to keep the commandment to love one another in spite of disagreement, and to keep contention out of our lives than it is about who is right and who is wrong.

lynor said...

05:10 PM
on Oct 14, 2012

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I feel that both Democrates and Republicans have good and bad points, but I think the issue at this time in life is that Obama does not follow the Constitution, and is leading our country into Socialism. Read Obama's autobiography, "Dreams FROM My Father" He is trying to treat this country like his Father's beliefs and desires for the U.S.A.. This book will open your eyes to what Obama is trying to do to this country.I have voted for Democrates in Congress and in Presidencies. John Kennedy was one of my favorites and he would turn over in his grave to see what Obama is doing to the Democratic Party. John Kennedy believed in Capitalism not Socialism. Nobody will be able to change the mindset of either side, but PLEASE read the upbringing and who the friends are of President Obama and what he truely believes in. Don't vote on his looks, his charisma and his ability to talk from his teleprompter. He is a man who has spent over two million dollars to keep his school records and personal information from the American people. Look it up on the internet, don't take my word for it. Also, read the news article from the Wall Street Journal that just came out discussing president Obama. Please be open minded when voting this year and KNOW ALL THE FACTS ON BOTH RUNNING MATES. Don't vote for your party members unless you know what they stand for and you agree wholeheartly in their position.

alliegator said...

01:00 PM
on Oct 15, 2012

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The church leaders have said (and remind us every election) that policies consistent with gospel principles can be found in all major political parties. I've often wondered about the "do you affiliate..." temple recommend question, because both democratic and republican parties have things in their platforms that are not consistent with gospel principles. Until the prophet says that we should all belong to one party or the other, I think we can safely continue picking the one that we think matches our own views most closely. We'd also do well to remember that the other party isn't the enemy. The enemy is contention and refusal to work together to solve the real problems our country faces.
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