While Robert Jeffress is running around telling anyone who will listen that “the Southern Baptist Convention has labeled Mormonism as a cult” and that Mitt Romney is a member of the cult, the Southern Baptist Convention’s Richard Land is trying to do some damage control and suggesting that all Jeffress was really saying is that Mormonism is “a new religion, separate and distinct from the historic Christian faith.”
And, according to Land, since conservative Southern Baptists and other Evangelicals have already been inoculated against Mormonism by their own pastors and therefore would have no problem voting for a Mormon for President, the media will have to try to turn off Independents by highlighting the tenets of the Mormon faith in an effort to make voters uncomfortable with Romney so as to help President Obama win re-election:
[T]he vast majority of the 40 percent or so of the American public who identify themselves as “Independents” (and who decide every American presidential election) have only the most cursory understanding of the truth claims or belief system of the Mormon faith. If, and when, Gov. Romney becomes the Republican nominee, the major broadcast networks, all of whom but Fox have abandoned any semblance of objectivity on political matters will be airing specials going into great detail on the beliefs of Mormons. While they will say they are doing this in the public interest, informing voters about Mormonism in light of the nation’s first Mormon nominee for president, their real reason will be much different. Since they are so invested philosophically and emotionally in the re-election of President Obama, they will be hoping that Mormonism’s beliefs will be exotically new and different enough to Independent voters that many of them will conclude that they sufficiently question the judgment of someone who believes such things that they will not entrust that candidate with the presidency.