D. Michael Quinn, author of the University of Illinois Press book Same-Sex Dynamics among Nineteenth-Century Americans: A Mormon Example, penned a Vanity Fair web exclusive feature titled When Mormons Go to Washington.
Though Mitt Romney and his supporters invoke J.F.K.’s 1960 talk, most Mormons do not believe in the America of which Kennedy spoke. He described a nation “where no public official either requests or accepts instructions on public policy from” any “ecclesiastical source.” By contrast, L.D.S. politicians (both Democrats and Republicans) have sought instructions from their church’s leaders for more than a century. Republican officeholders have been most susceptible to such political “counsel,” while L.D.S. Democrats have often objected to it—sometimes stridently.