May a Christian Vote for a Mormon?
Posted by Warren Peterson on November 13, 2007
Mitt Romney’s Mormon faith has been a major stumbling block to evangelical support of his presidential aspirations. That may be changing. One example of this was his favorable reception at the recent meeting of the Christian right in Washington, D.C. Another was his endorsement by Paul Weyrich, a founder of Moral Majority and the Heritage Foundation. Still another is found in an article in the latest issue of the Christian Research Institute’s, “Journal”. Baylor University Associate Professor of Philosophy and Jurisprudence, Francis J. Beckwith, authored an article “Is It Permissible for a Christian to Vote for a Mormon?” He comments on two potential mistakes that can be made if Romney is nominated. One by the candidate if he claims, as did John F. Kennedy, that his theology would not influence his policies and one if the voters judge the candidate through the lens of their own creeds and belief systems. He argues that it is because of his beliefs that Romney could claim a commitment to ”justice and democracy.” For the voter, Professor Beckwith points out that evangelicals preferred Reagan over the openly evangelical Carter because of Reagan’s policies, not his religion. He concludes the article with the statement “… in some cases a Christian’s conscience may require him or her to support the Mormon candidate if that candidate is the most likely to advance the common good.” If these three examples a trend make, Governor Romney may be able to avoid the risk of a JFK speech on religious affiliation and instead rely on voters supporting candidates with similar values regardless of underlying theology.
Since the CRI article is not yet available on line, readers will find very similar and expanded views on the subject by Professor Beckwith, “When the Saint Goes Swearing In” on: