MR says: Even without Mitt Romney in the 2016 election race, Mormonism could make a difference in its results.
It’s an unusual personal detour on an otherwise straightforward path: Marco Rubio’s brief history as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
He doesn’t talk about it much, if ever, on the campaign trail, but it might turn out to be his early-state ace in the hole.
Rubio is subtly leveraging his LDS background to build support in Nevada, where the state’s LDS community isn’t huge — Mormons make up just a small percentage of the population — but represents an influential constituency in Republican politics. . . .
Rubio’s conversion came at the age of 8 while his family lived in Las Vegas, as documented in his 2012 book “American Son.” But he felt “called” to return to Catholicism, receiving his first communion at 13 years old.
In the book, Rubio offered a glimpse into the family backstory.
“All in all, the Mormon church provided the sound moral structure my mother had wanted for us, and a circle of friends from stable, God-fearing families,” he wrote. “When we left the church a few years later, mostly at my instigation, we did so with gratitude for its considerable contribution to our happiness in those years.”