Kenneth Woodward, writing in the New York Times, discusses how Gov. Romney can defend himself when asked whether the LDS church will have influence over his administration:
He should invite critics to review the church’s record. The former Massachusetts governor is neither the first nor even the most prominent Mormon office holder. The Senate majority leader, Harry Reid of Nevada, and Senator Orrin Hatch of Utah come immediately to mind — not to mention Mr. Romney’s father, George, a moderate governor of Michigan who ran for the Republican nomination for president in 1968.
There is no evidence that church authorities have tried to influence any of these public servants. On the contrary, the church leadership is undoubtedly astute enough to realize — as Catholic bishops did with President Kennedy — that any pressure on a Romney White House would only harm the church itself. “My church doesn’t dictate to me or anyone what political policies we should pursue,” Mr. Romney declared in New Hampshire in February. Voters should accept that declaration unless there is evidence to prove otherwise.