Obama to Meet with Mormon President

When President Obama meets with Mormon president Thomas S. Monson this afternoon, it’s safe to say that Obama is not … Continued

When President Obama meets with Mormon president Thomas S. Monson this afternoon, it’s safe to say that Obama is not exactly speaking to his base.

Less than half of Mormons (45 percent) approve of his job performance, according to a recent poll by Gallup. That’s a sharply lower total than among Catholics (67 percent) and Protestants (58 percent). Forty percent of Mormons disapprove of his job performance.

Monson, who has headed the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints since last year, will be joined by Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.), who is also a Mormon. Kim Farah, spokesperson for the church described the private meeting as a “brief courtesy visit.” (More on the subject of the meeting below)

Is it worth pointing out that Mitt Romney, a Mormon, could be Obama’s Republican rival for the presidency in 2012?

The Salt Lake City Tribune points out that one sensitive topic virtually guaranteed not to come up in the meeting between Obama and Monson is the posthumous baptizing of the president’s late mother. A church member performed a “baptism for the dead” of Sanley Ann Dunham in 2007, according to a researcher.

Back in Salt Lake City, there’s been a bit of a dust-up over kissing. For the second consecutive weekend, about 100 people gathered to stage a “kiss-in” to protest the treatment of two gay men cited for trespassing July 9 after they shared a kiss on the plaza owned by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, reports the Associated Press. Both gay and straight couples exchanged kisses during the protest.

UPDATE: Post pollster Jon Cohen points out that there weren’t enough Mormons in the national exit poll to break out the percentage of Mormons who voted for Obama, But, he notes, in (uber-Republican) Utah, they made up 75 percent of the electorate and broke 78 percent for McCain to 19 percent for Obama.

SECOND UPDATE: Statements from administration spoxe Jen Psaki: “President Obama is looking forward to meeting with President Monson of the LDS Church, Elder Dallin Oaks, Chair of the genealogical committee and Senator Reid later this morning. The meeting was set up by Senator Reid. LDS Church leadership has met with previous presidents and presented them with genealogical records detailing their family history.”

  • cvpartridge

    “It’s difficult for me to understand the hard and at times hateful feelings toward The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.” I agree it is difficult to understand, but at the same time if you look at the life of Jesus Christ, he was the ultimate example of humility, charity, love, and compassion and look how he was treated. People are the same today as they were back in his time, just in a different way. Matthew 7:20 – “Wherefore by their fruits ye shall know them.” Just some food for thought.

  • acg8460

    I agree with the post that wonders why there’s so much antipathy towards the LDS church- as a life-long member, I have seen every side of it and can vouch for its ability to make peoples’ lives better. Why isn’t there more criticism toward athiest activists- all they manage to do is tell people how crappy and meaningless their lives are.

  • coloradodog

    BYU06 wrote:There was plenty more than a simple “kiss on the cheek.”________________________Oh yeah? Let’s compare Elder Otterson’s PR spin to the police report, or, better still, let’s see the video.Mormons may automatically believe every word the Chruch says but that doesn’t mean the rest of us do. Your Church has lied to us about your racist scriptures (which you conveniently changed in 1981) and about the Church not being involved in politics even after direct contributions to anti-gay efforts in California before, Alaska and Hawaii and by forming a massive multi-state PAC in support of Proposition 8. Why should the rest of the world believe you now?At least, this is arbitrary enforcement on a quasi-public thoroughfare. Let’s see the video.

  • reader0

    While Mr. Obama is in Utah he should take a minute to look at the local government. It is restrained, well run, and fiscally responsible. Utah is a great place to run a business and support a family. If President Obama keeps up this tax spend and takeover nonsense, the entire country will end up like California.

  • coloradodog

    From Reuters, October 1, 1998 ANCHORAGE, Alaska — The Salt Lake City-based Mormon church has donated $500,000 to the campaign for an amendment to the Alaska constitution that would ban same-sex marriages, a group seeking passage of the measure said Thursday.Mormon-owned BYU-Hawaii and the Polynesian Cultural Center made contributions that slightly exceeded the $1,000 political contribution limit. BYUH paid $1,200 to the group and the Polynesian Cultural Center paid $1,025. According to the Campaign Spending Commission, these payments are illegal, even if the organizations are refunded the money at a later date.Who lies for one’s own agenda, Elder?

  • InTheMiddle

    Note to readers:Please do not let the name confuse you. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is not a Christian church. It is a fabrication of a n’er-do-well named Joseph Smith in the 19th Century. It’s doctrines use the vocabulary of Biblical Christianity but contradict its teaching, just as “latter day” immitators such as “Rev” Moon’s Unification Church. “For the time will come when they will not endure sound doctrine, but according to their own desires, because they have itching ears, they will heap up for themselves teachers; and they will turn their ears away from the truth, and be turned aside to fables.” 2 Timothy 3-4

  • patmatthews

    Jeff Taylor says, “It’s difficult for me to understand the hard and at times hateful feelings toward The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.’Jeff perhaps it is the racist teachings of the LDS church. I have the older LDS bible changed in the 1980′s that refelects the following, “the evil are marked by their burned skin”The LDS marks blacks as evil by their own teaching and they wonder why people have harsh feelings towards the LDS church.The LDS Church’s teaching are racist in nature and practice.I am sure President Obama was the only Black Man at that meeting.Patrick

  • edallan

    Is there any GOOD reason why President Obama should not ask about the posthumous “baptism” of his mother? Have either his father or his beloved grandmother also been involuntarily “baptized”?Less than a week ago, President Obama told the NAACP: “By our gay brothers and sisters, still taunted, still attacked, still denied their rights.” Does he plan to mention the stealth attack long planned and promulgated by this Munson character on gay rights — in which he sought to cloak the LDS church’s involvement through getting the Roman Catholic Church to be the front organization and willing patsy?I don’t mind Obama’s meeting with leaders and misleaders of different faiths; I DO heartily object when he places them in positions where they can damage large numbers of people, and he has already done too much of that.

  • kjohnson3

    “Why should the rest of the world believe you now?”Coloradodog,I think part of the problem is that the Mormon higher-ups lie to their members; it’s a way of life in the Mormon church.I recently read a first-person account of how Mormons are programmed practically from birth. Toddlers are routinely brought to the pulpit at services to parrot the words “I know the Church is true.” They are brought up rehearsing their “testimony” and bombarded with so much Church-related lecturing and activities that they literally become walking, talking Morbots who are terrified of anything outside of their experience.Then, again, what can you expect from a church whose grand poobahs instruct women to wear their sacred underwear UNDER their bras to ensure full protection against evil? From a church whose women follow this command?

  • g2562

    For any ex-mormon who is checking this out who might want a group of people like you that “get it” why you left, go to http://www.exmormon.org. It is insightful, validating, makes you less alone,and will help you to recover from your experience faster. Voice of experience. For all the current true blue LDS, this http://www.exmormon.org isn’t for you. You aren’t there, you may never wake up and wonder why Indians skin doesn’t change color to a lighter color unless they have Michael Jacksons former doctor. There is no such thing as free agency if we are going around funding laws that take away the free agency of others and then hiding behind God as the reason we violated that law in a political arena. There is no such thing as separation of church and state if we take what we tell our own people and enforce it into public law to those not even LDS or Christian, but who choose a different way of lifestyle. Pilgrims came to america as the first pro-choice group. The choice to practice religion of their choice, OR NOT. Some chose Bible, others did not. This country was founded on the right to practice religion, OR NOT to. This is a church of business that has managed to hide and do it tax free with the given legal loopholes. There is no valid reason for any President to meet with any religious leader since the two are SUPPOSE to be SEPARATE on every level. No influencing each other. But, this is America. Money talks. Add up the tithe they take in, TAX FREE.. and well, of course Obama or any President would meet with them. It is all about money and votes. That is all religion is any more. Look at the political weapon the Republicans turned the Bible into. There is nothing spiritual any more in it. It is all grandstanding for power and looking good.FORMER true blue from birth.

  • tjfrmla

    I just hope he spends an equal amount of time seeking out leaders and representatives of the non-believing Americans. As a non-believer, I’m REALLY GETTING SICK of ll the pandering to these religions. Religion causes problems world-wide and sustains hate.

  • kjohnson3

    I hope that, during the meeting with Monson, President Obama will register his disapproval of the Mormon church using its power to influence public policy and condone illegal arrest and/or harrassment of gays or any other minority.This isn’t how things are done in the U.S. Perhaps the Mormon church should think about relocating to Alaska. I hear there’s some talk of seceeding from the Union to avoid all those pesky American laws.

  • thewolf1

    The effect of Governor Romney’s faith in his presidential primary run can be overstated, of course, but it may have soured the views of some LDS members toward the Republican fundamentalist base (including that part comprised of their missionary arch rival Southern Baptist Convention). Which is to say that in a state that could forego its seeming religious preoccupations to elect non-Mormons to local and state office, and which could celebrate Karl Malone, efforts toward good relations with a President — even a liberal black President — should be assumed.

  • chopin224

    All religions have a good thing going and have their own ways of being exclusive rather than inclusive but the Mormons take it much higher or perhaps the right word is lower level. So becoming a Mormon will turn colored people white? That’s too funny to comment on except to ask if a white person leaves the church, does he turn colored?

  • jefftaylor

    It’s difficult for me to understand the hard and at times hateful feelings toward The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As a missionary in Korea for two years, I enjoyed teaching free English classes and serving in the communities I lived by washing a crippled man and helping prepare food at relief shelters. The Church is about doing good. It really is. Here’s a link to a recent article about part of the welfare wing of the Church involved in farming for the needy:

  • danaman

    The mormon church is a cult which, along with many other religions/denominations (older cults) professes support for ‘American values’ while blatantly ignoring the mandates of the U. S. Constitution. The wholesome family image is a varnish on the extremely dark underbelly of practices which repress women and systematically suppress any ideological disagreement (i.e. free speech) with doctrines by labeling it as “attacks” on the organization. I dare the mormons to open those temple doors and shine a light on the sect’s doctrines, workings and true ambitions.

  • byu06

    There was plenty more than a simple “kiss on the cheek.” The Church’s statement can be found here:There was groping, passionate kissing, profanity (when asked to stop), and the two had obviously been drinking. It is no surprise to me that homosexual rights activists have chosen to use these baseless accusations as an opportunity to advance their own causes. I saw the same thing firsthand when I worked as a journalist, when Soulforce lied about their experiences at Brigham Young University. I was there – I saw what happened, and then I read their lies about it that they posted on their web site. It’s disgusting to me that anyone would think it’s okay to lie about something to advance their own agenda.Also, to clarify what coloradodog said about prop 8. The Church did not form any group to fight against Prop 8, and did not donate “hundreds of thousands of dollars.” They donated $189,903.58 for the “Yes on 8″ campaign, all of which were in-kind donations (NO cash given). [see the Church’s statement here: That is less than one half of one percent of the total $40 million raised. Once again, more lies to advance someone’s own agenda.

  • trambusto

    …when will Obama pander to Americans who don’t believe in the Abrahamic faiths? Would I have to buy one of his advisors for him to realize there’s a World of Belief beyond Judaeism, Christianity and Islam?On the one hand it’s great that our Government recognizes the secularism of our Nation. But on the other hand, they need to stop pandering to Christian groups.

  • jarvarisgoss

    They knock on your door every week like Jehovah Witness.

  • trambusto

    byu06 wrote:**********************It’s nice to see that someone as conservative as you can be as disgusted with Republicans as I am.

  • LynneAnne

    July 2009The reason Non-LDS are offended is that the Mormon Church is an organization about spiritual eugenics….if you aren’t well enough to comprehend this, remember genocide and ethnic cleansing? What about these truths in relation to a person’s heritage and membership in Christianity…Welcome to Mormonism…they persecute anything different than what they are….a Secret Society deigned a religion…Try being an educated woman or liberal man in LDS Church…they’d rather you be dead….spiritual eugenics…