Hillary Clinton writes an op-ed to appeal to the Mormons of Utah.
In the past week, Hillary Clinton published an op-ed in the Deseret News especially targeting Mormon voters, and urging them to vote for her. This move got people talking across the country since it was almost unprecedented for a Democratic presidential candidate to make a targeted pitch to Mormon voters. Utah and Mormons have for years been a reliably red group. Clinton’s op-ed was written in response to a direct request by Deseret News, which is under the ownership of LDS Church. This same request was made to all major presidential candidates.
According to polls, Hillary Clinton is around a dozen points behind Donald Trump therefore, this was a vital move for her campaign in the Beehive State.
Earlier in the week, Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party took the opportunity to try to take back a recent comment that “religious freedom, as a category, is a black hole.”
In the 2016 elections, Mormons might be separating from their white evangelical brethren. This is widely attributed by the widely disapproved policies by Donald Trump targeted at Muslims and immigrants. Mormons have a history of persecution by Protestant Americans and therefore, the constant persecution of Muslims repels them from the Republican candidate. Moreover, the growth of the Mormon Church has for years been strongly tied to Latinos in the U.S. and abroad. Thus, such anti-immigrant polemics from Trump tend to push them even further away.
This is not forgetting the differences in religious ideologies between evangelicals and Mormons. Evangelicals preach forgiveness and therefore, they offer support to sinners who repent. Mormons, however believe in being well-behaved believers and also in the perfectibility of humankind and thus they are less tolerant of sinners and wrongdoers.
In Clinton’s op-ed, she highlighted all these issues and in addition, she reaffirmed her devotion to the Constitution, which to Mormons is a divinely inspired document. Thomas S. Monson, the current president of the church, had earlier noted the infinite blessings Mormons had received from the Constitution of the United States, another fact that Clinton quoted in her op-ed. By arguing that Trump lacked the morals to be president, she even quoted Rosemary Wixom, the former LDS Primary General President. Wixom had said that individuals were unstoppable with God.
— Thomas Burr (@thomaswburr) August 11, 2016
Clinton quoted Mitt Romney who said Trump “fired before aiming” when he suggested banning Islam from the U.S. as his solution to the threat of terrorism. Trump’s attacks on Mormon Mitt Romney have also not helped his case. He recently referred to Mitt Romney as “a choke artist,” and not stopping there, he went on to question his religious beliefs by saying, “Are you sure he’s a Mormon?”
As the state of Utah anticipates Trump’s move regarding Mormons, it is highly recommended that he also publishes his own op-ed in the Deseret News. Also, there have been demands for him to apologize to Romney and acknowledge him for his noble service to American capitalism and the Republican Party.