Mormonism Stayed off the Table: Thank You OFA and DNC

November 16, 2012


Rev. Derrick Harkins, National Director of Faith Outreach for the DNC

It’s hard to believe that the election ended less than two weeks ago. I didn’t post much the last few weeks of the campaign because I was knocking doors in Florida, and there’s one thing I must say:

THANK YOU to Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee for keeping Governor Romney’s Mormonism and mine off the table this campaign! I never doubted President Obama’s or Chairwoman Wasserman Schultz’s commitment to steer clear of religious attacks, but presidential campaigns are gigantic operations. For Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee to keep the message that tight required serious dedication on the part of staffers and surrogates to resist the urge to “go there.”

In the most high-profile anti-Mormon maneuver by a surrogate of which I am aware, she quickly announced her regret for her remarks. I recognize this effort didn’t prevent Bill Maher, Andrew Sullivan, and other pundits from attacking the Church, and that we read some news stories that were uncomfortable-but-accurate, but I think these things further underscore the tremendous amount of work the campaign did to keep Mormonism a non-issue in its own operations. Throughout the campaign, Latter-day Saints on the other side of the political aisle would ask me, “What are you going to do when they attack Mormonism in late October?” I told them, “Not going to happen.” Thank you again, OFA and DNC, for proving me right and for running a great campaign.

Too often we fail to recognize what goes right in politics. If you (Latter-day Saint or otherwise), want to express your thanks to Obama for America and the Democratic National Committee for keeping Mormonism out of it, I encourage you to leave your name and state in the comments.

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56 Comments on “Mormonism Stayed off the Table: Thank You OFA and DNC”

  1. Sherri Park Says:

    Yes, I do appreciate that our religion was not a target of the Obama campaign. I never thought it would be because President Obama is a class act. And thanks to Rob for a great job leading Mormons for Obama!

  2. robtaber Says:

    I am Robert Taber, and I am in Florida.

  3. Darlene Fields Says:

    I am Darlene Fields and I am in Arizona.

  4. Mark Hall Says:

    My name is Mark Hall, and I live in Washington State. I am a liberal Mormon, and of course there has always been the knowledge that those against Romney would also attack the church. Indeed, these things have happened, immature attempts to bash on Romney in any way. However, the Obama administration and the DNC has not commented in any way shape or form against the Mormon religion, and for that I am grateful. For this reason, I wholeheartedly support the president in his endeavors; I truly feel that he wishes only the best for all of us. Freedom, equality, peace and wisdom. Thank you.

  5. Madeline Miller Says:

    Thank you President Obama, DNC and others for acting with dignity and class in keeping religion out of the presidential race. A wonderful example set and noted. Madeline Miller, Utahn residing the Glasgow, Scotland

  6. Debbie Lowe Says:

    Thank you!!! Debbie Lowe in California

  7. Susan Felt Says:

    . Thank you to these political organizations and the here mentioned leaders of our Nation for your kind respectful treatment of my sacred religious beliefs during this election cycle. I continue to be in awe of President Obama and those who surround him. All of you have my support and prayers in the coming days, weeks, months, years.

  8. Rody Says:

    I echo the sentiments that President Obama is a class act. Frankly, I think we should give him a BOM. He’d make a great Mormon. I do thank DNC for not Mormon-bashing. But frankly anything-bashing is not typically the DNC’s style. Mostly that belongs to the other side.

  9. Hope Wiltfong Says:

    Thank you, from Hope Wiltfong in Arizona.

  10. Marina Says:

    I do not support most of Obama’s policies and I feel he has lied and twisted a lot of things during his tenure (especially about Benghazi). HOWEVER, I wholeheartedly appreciate that there were no religious attacks in his campaign. He did not trample on the sacred beliefs of others and for that I am grateful. I pray that he will lead our country in a good direction, regardless of his socialistic agenda.
    (From a conservative, constitution-loving, LDS Republican)–Nevada

  11. treehuncher Says:

    Thank you for not attacking a culture that really does agree with your beliefs (more than they know) and for being a wonderful president fighting for all! Even those who oppose you! You make America a more positive place to live in despite the many negative attacks. You don’t stoop to levels and fights the nasty fights that have come against you so..THANK YOU for being wonderful and being under-appreciated for the marvels you have helped create!

  12. Joseph Says:

    Excellent points Rob!!! and i too thank OFA! Joseph Seattle

  13. Dan Webster Says:

    Pew Research says 21% of Mormons voted for Obama. That proves LDS are not as monolithic as some would believe. And historically, in Utah at least, Mormons were predominantly Democrat. My how things have change.

  14. Blake Swain Says:

    I’m Blake Swain and I live in American Fork, Utah. I’m a Mormon and I voted for the President. Thanks to the Obama Campaign for respecting my faith and for conducting an outstanding campaign.

  15. Judy Bowden Says:

    I am Judy Bowden from the great state of Florida. So proud to see my state go to President Obama!!! Thank you for keeping the conversation respectful of my faith and for conducting an outstanding campaign.

  16. crevans2012 Says:

    Carol Evans, Taylorsville, UT

  17. Ryan Wayment Says:

    All last year, as I heard right wingers predict the President would go anti-Mormon, I knew that he would not. I don’t even know whether it is something the President needs to be thanked for because it is just who he is. But I appreciate it very much. A sharp contrast indeed to both the rampid anti-Mormon attacks during the Republican primaries and the shameful attacks on the President’s religious beliefs by the Romney campaign and Romney himself. I hope the next Mormon candidate is a class act like President Obama, And a Democrat.

    • Not a Mormon Says:

      Jon Huntsman is a class act, and hopefully President Obama’s electoral landslide will help them to see what an asset they have in him.

  18. Kristi Says:

    I appreciate that my religious beliefs were not attacked, ridiculed, or belittled by President Obama and his campaign. It was enough to deal with the attacks on my religion from the conservative religious right. Thank you, President Obama, for being a class act. Kristi Hansen, Boise, Idaho

  19. Cindy Newell Says:

    Thank you, President Obama, and the Democratic Party for being so respectful of our beliefs. We agree with other commenters that our president is a class act. He is kind and has a good heart. We too think he is a wonderful president and admire how he has taken the high road as others have sought continually to attack and criticize him. We pray for him and those with whom he serves. Cindy and Marvin Newell, Sparks NV

  20. Emily Says:

    Emily Warnick in UT.

  21. Yamilka Hayes Says:

    My family and I volunteered for the Obama campaign in Florida in 2008. This year, we found ourselves living in a more progressive place -Portland, Oregon- and we are thankful the president was re-elected.
    President Obama, and those working with him, are truly caring people and it never occurred to me that they could attack our faith during those contentious days. Thank you Mr. President, OFC and DNC for the classy campaign!

    Yamilka Hayes, Portland, Oregon

  22. Sharon Says:

    My name is Sharon Garrick,
    I am a mamber of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.
    I voted for Obama.
    I live in Murtoa, Victoria Australia (I hold dual USA & Australian citizenship)
    I was always sure that Obama would win and am very thankful for that blessing.

  23. Pamela Says:

    My name is Pamela Johanson and I am a Mormon from North Ogden, UT. Thank you to Obama for America and the DNC for treating my religion respectfully throughout the presidential campaign. Just one more reason that I’m proud to be a liberal and a democrat…no matter how lonely it can be in this red state sometimes. I’d rather be right (or left!) all by myself than wrong with everyone else.

  24. kimberly Says:

    Kimberly Konkel, Washington, DC

  25. Christopher Allen Says:

    I’m Christopher, I live in Utah, and I’m grateful that we separated religion from politics for the most part in this election.

  26. Gen Says:

    Thank you! Genevieve Bray, Las Vegas, NV

  27. Rachel Says:

    Thank you for the respect you provided to all citizens listening close to the verbiage of this campaign. Rachel, Utah.

  28. Katy Bettner Says:

    As an LDS woman who has been a strong and vocal advocate for our president since his first primary season, I am so tremendously grateful that I did not ever feel alienated by OFA for my religious beliefs. Thank you so not stooping to that level.
    I was afraid for a moment that I would end up feeling as defensive of my church within my political party and I do often feel in my church with regards to my political affiliation. I often attempted to bite my tongue (not always successfully) over the last 2 elections to stop myself from constantly pointing out that most of the very visible evangelicals in the republican party would not even allow us to participate in Christian non denominational service projects before Mitt Romney became the nominee such was there surety that we were a cult.
    Thank you for the high road and congratulations. I knew you could do it.

  29. Hugh Stocks Says:

    Thank you. Hugh Stocks in Parkville, MO.

  30. b1lparaquat Says:

    Many times throughout the campaign, I’ve had to point out that making a case for a man’s unfitness for the Presidency should never need to include his religious convictions.

    I thought the Obama team ran a great campaign, had a great convention, and held great debates. Bil Hooper of Effingham, IL. is very proud to have Barack Obama as our President for a second term.

  31. Mary Says:

    As mentioned by so many others, I am so grateful for a president who not only respects my rights and equality as a woman, but also as a Latter Day Saint. I recall an interview in which Mormonism was not only mentioned, but it was honored by the president. I appreciate that, and look forward to another 4 years. Thanks to the M4O for setting up this group of like-minded individuals. Otherwise, I think I would have gone crazy out here in good ol’ Salt Lake City, Utah!!

    Mary J

  32. Mary Lovett Says:

    Thanks, I am Mary Lovett and I am in Rocky Mount, NC.

  33. Kiran Badwal Says:

    I love you President and Mrs. Obama!! And, Vice-President Biden and Dr. Biden!! You all are an inspiration to me!! I live part-time in Maryland and California.

  34. Cynthia Burnham Says:

    Thank you!! Cynthia Burnham, Morgan Hill, CA

  35. Erik E Says:

    I am an ex Mormon but voted for Obama when I still went to church. I am glad to see one of the candidates keeping it classy and it wasn’t the one that most Mormons supported.

  36. Linda Romney Swain Says:

    Thank you, President Obama, and everyone that worked with you on the campaign. I’m grateful for your grace under pressure. My name is Linda Romney Swain, I’m a Mormon and a Democrat, and I live in American Fork, Utah (in middle of the most Republican county of the most Republican state in the Union). 😉

  37. Hope Moffett Says:

    Thank you! Hope Moffett, VA

  38. David Monson Says:

    I am an LDS Republican from the S.F. Bay Area, where my political party hardly exists (except in an extreme form, myself excepted). From what I saw, more Republicans raised the Mormon question than Democrats. It would have been unwise for Democrats to do so; it only would have hurt Obama’s campaign. Thanks from the other side of the aisle.

  39. Jack Bowman Says:

    It is very inspiring to me as a heathen living in Salt Lake to read these comments. I am humbled and I regret ever saying that all Mormons would vote for Romney just because he is a Mormon. Jon Huntsman could have had my vote but not against Obama. His time will come.

  40. Robin V Says:

    I offer my thanks as well.
    Robin VanderRoest, from Michigan

  41. Dawn Anderson Says:

    I’m an Obama supporter, a woman, and I was raised Mormon. I thank the Obama campaign for avoiding the smear tactics so common on the other side, including frequent attempts to negatively and inaccurately associate the president with Islam.

  42. Marlo Beeman Says:

    Thank you from an “unaffiliated” voter in Pennsylvania, a Mormon and an Obama supporter.

  43. Harry Galer Says:

    My name is Harry Galer and I live in North Carolina. I am an exmormon. While I no longer respect anything about the Mormon church, I do respect those who choose to remain faithful. I’m happy but not surprised that President Obama and the DNC kept religion out of the campaign.

  44. Thom Dillon Says:

    Thom Dillon, Age 65, in Jacksonville, Florida

  45. James Herrick Says:

    I am James Herrick and live in the marvelously blue state of Virginia. Thanks for the respect.

  46. Michael Tweedy Says:

    My wife and I live in Washington state, and she is a liberal Mormon. I am a liberal ex-Mormon. While she bristles when something critical of Mormonism is said, she understands that it was a valid issue. As for me, I couldn’t get enough of it. I believed the issue of Mormonism and of Mitt Romney’s “covenant” to obey the Law of Consecration good enough for me and the public to make some hay of it. A potential or prospective US president should not be making such “covenants” to a church, and I wanted people to know. But it’s moot now, and my complaints are overtaken by events. President Obama is back in. He is not just the better president, but the better man.

  47. Tammy Denton Clark Says:

    This is Tammy Denton Clark, from Heron Montana and a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I support our president and am pleased with the outcome of the election. Now we all need to come together for the good of our country. Thanks.

  48. Sara Long Says:

    Thank you. I’m Sara Long, from Portland, Oregon.

  49. Garry Says:

    I am in favor of leaving religion out of political bickering all together.

  50. Wiley H Darden.Jr Says:

    A mighty effort was put forth to implement voter suppression. ( A travesty) Thank God it failed. I’m a Mormon. Jacksonville, Fl


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