Republicans are running on policy issues, not religion

ElectionsPoliticsWhite HouseJoseph Smith, Jr.Jon Huntsman, Jr.Rick Perry

I have to take issue with Susan Reimer's recent column ("Are they running for president or pastor?" Sept. 19). One particular statement is such a stretch it reminds me of the blatantly biased columns in my college paper many years ago.

Ms. Reimer states:

"Republican presidential hopeful Rick Perry said in a speech at the Christian-based Liberty University last week that he believes God has a plan for everyone, and God's plan for him will be revealed in time. Michele Bachmann, according to a finely wrought profile in The New Yorker, believes in Dominionism — that the Bible requires that Christians lead all secular institutions, shepherding them until Christ returns."

Then she adds:

"Candidates Mitt Romney and Jon Huntsman are Mormon, and neither one has talked at length about his faith. But presumably they believe an angel appeared to Joseph Smith and instructed him to dig up tablets of gold on which was inscribed the history of the Christian faith in America."

Did this really make it through the editorial board after careful consideration, or is it meant to elicit reaction and therefore readers? It seems to me Ms. Reimer's self-acknowledged presumption demonstrates a personal bias against The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I think this borders on bigotry.

Let me understand this: The fact that Governors Romney and Huntsman have religious beliefs automatically means one can "presume" they will be campaigning on religious issues or that if elected they would run the White House like pastors? This would imply President Barack Obama's own Christianity warrants a presumption he's been running the country like a pastor. I'm a Republican, and I wouldn't agree with that assessment nor do I agree you can paint all candidates with any religious beliefs that way.

In fact, I challenge Ms. Reimer to point to any particular comment Governor Huntsman has made that should license her or any of us to a presumption that he plans to run the theocracy she would have us believe he will be running as president.

I'm a supporter of Governor Huntsman's. One reason I believe he is a strong candidate for presidency is his focus is on fiscal issues and foreign policy, broadly speaking. Issues of substance.

I understand Ms. Reimer is entitled to her opinion in the type of column she writes, but this doesn't seem to pass muster for a newspaper as large as The Sun. It sounds to me like Ms. Reimer allowed a young Democrat to re-run a column from one of the local college papers on her behalf.

Ed Lopez, Portsmouth, N.H.

The writer is national vice chairman of the Republican Liberty Caucus.

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