Historically they have leaned toward Republicans, but some members of this conservative church, discouraged by the president, are switching sides and backing veteran Democrat Joe Biden.
Mormons in the United States have routinely leaned toward the Republicans, but some members of this conservative church, put off by President Donald Trump, they are switching sides and backing veteran Democrat Joe Biden.
Support for Trump among members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which emphasizes family values and morals, it has fallen, especially among women.
Analysts say this could have a significant impact on key states, particularly Arizona and Nevada. where Mormons represent 6% of the population.
“There are things about Biden that I don’t agree with, but I think it’s more important not to vote for Trump,” said Melarie Wheat, a 36-year-old mother of five who lives in the western state of Utah, where Mormons have its headquarters.
En 2016, Wheat voted for independent candidate Evan McMullin, who is Mormon, as Trump and his Democratic rival, Hillary Clinton, disappointed her.
In the four years since then, Trump has done little to change Wheat’s opinion of him.
“I thought, ‘Well, maybe I’ll get to the presidency, tone down and follow conservative policies and be a good leader,” he told AFP. “But no, that’s what it was”added.
The president “likes to make fun of people and divide and does not respect women. It does not respect refugees, immigrants or minorities, “he stressed.
Like Wheat, many other Mormons they’re sick of the rhetoric and Trump’s behavior, which is at odds with the church’s teachings on sex, foul language, empathy, and humility.
Last month, McMullin, who in 2016 finished third in the Utah election behind Trump but not far behind Clinton, urged his followers to back Biden.
“A word to my fellow conservatives and principled Republicans: voting for Biden does not mean that you agree with every position he takes or that you cannot oppose his decisions as president,” he wrote on Twitter.
“It just means that priority will be given to the Constitution, the truth and decency in this election, “he added.
Republican Senator Mitt Romney, one of the most famous members of the Mormon church and who has repeatedly confronted Trump, also said this week that he did not endorse the president.
“I did not vote for President Trump,” Romney, who cast his early vote in Utah before the Nov. 3 race, told CNN, though he declined to say whether he had endorsed Biden.
Such a lack of enthusiasm among Mormons could tip the balance in Biden’s favor in Arizona, where 400,000 people are recognized in that church and where Trump won in 2016 by only 91,000 votes.
Among those hoping for such an outcome is Dan Barker, a 67-year-old retired judge and lifelong Republican who, along with his spouse, founded the Arizona Republicans Association for Biden.