December 6th, 2007
08:15 AM ET
12 years ago

Romney: I'll serve no one religion

Romney will deliver his speech at 10:30 a.m. ET.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney says he'll serve no one religion or cause if he's elected president of the United States.

The Republican presidential hopeful will speak about religion and faith in America in an address Thursday that is being viewed as a way for him to discuss his Mormon religion.

"When I place my hand on the Bible and take the oath of office, that oath becomes my highest promise to God. If I am fortunate to become your president, I will serve no one religion, no one group, no one cause, and no one interest. A president must serve only the common cause of the people of the United States," Romney will say according to prepared remarks provided by his campaign in advance of the 10:30 a.m. ET address.

The speech comes after several recent polls have suggested that his faith may present a stumbling block in his White House quest. Romney will use the George Bush Presidential Library in College Station, Texas as a backdrop.

Earlier this week, Romney told reporters that this speech is not modeled after a similar address given 47 years ago by then-Sen. John F. Kennedy, who spoke about his Catholic faith in his successful White House run. But Romney did say he would talk about being a Mormon.

"There are some who would have a presidential candidate describe and explain his church's distinctive doctrines," Romney will say. "To do so would enable the very religious test the founders prohibited in the constitution. No candidate should become the spokesman for his faith. For if he becomes President he will need the prayers of the people of all faiths."

- CNN Deputy Political Director Paul Steinhauser

Filed under: Mitt Romney
soundoff (53 Responses)
  1. Eric, Salt Lake City, Utah

    "Freedom requires religion..." bull. I know many atheists who are more moral and committed to individual liberties and tolerance. I would vote for a Mormon, Muslim, Atheist, Buddhist if they had the right character and record. I've also known Mormons who have impeccable manners, but are conniving behind the polite exterior. Unfortunately Romney is too plasticine and slick. I prefer substance rather than a smooth politician shell.

    December 6, 2007 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  2. Kate Aurora CO

    Forgive me if I find humor in, "I will serve no one religion.." "When I place my hand on the Bible"'s an idea. Since our society now is just a tad different than it was when George Washington was sworn to office, why don't we do away with the archaic bible swearing? We have a country that is so diverse and so (over) populated with different cultures, sets of beliefs, religion vs no religion..etc etc. We are no longer a "Christian based" society. Wake up.

    December 6, 2007 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  3. brad, ca

    Mormans use the King James Version

    December 6, 2007 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  4. Joe, Philadelphia, PA

    When Mansoor Ijaz, a New York financier and commentator of Pakistani ancestry, asked former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney about putting a Muslim in his presidential Cabinet, Romney responded by saying he "cannot see that a Cabinet position would be justified"

    And now he preaches equality.

    December 6, 2007 12:09 pm at 12:09 pm |
  5. Jose Card

    I am not a supporter of Romney and neither am I a religious person.

    Why do we discriminate against the Mormons so much in this free country?

    "If I am fortunate to become your president, I will serve no one religion, no one group, no one cause, and no one interest."

    We need a president who serves the whole nation.

    December 6, 2007 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  6. proud2bliberal

    20 years ago being gay was a sin. And it says in the Bible it says it Still is a sin. Hilary Clinton Can not control her husbands relationships with other women(s). Our country has turned from doing the right thing to being politcal corect. If Romney is a acting Christian person and not being "just polical Correct". What is the Problem?

    Posted By Mark ,,Alabama : December 6, 2007 10:39 am

    I'm not sure I see the connection between what the bible says about gays and Hillary's problems with her husband being faithful...taht being said the problem is that when it comes to politics- we don't or shouldn't care what the bible says. Now, if you're a Christian then you should care deeply about what the bible says but when it comes to writing our laws, there is no place for it.

    The bible also says that working on the Sabbath is a sin..should we outlaw working on Sunday's?

    December 6, 2007 12:25 pm at 12:25 pm |
  7. Rebecca, Michigan

    The speech was inspiring. I'm glad he gave it. I was undecided before today and now I am not. I am voting for Mitt Romney.

    Mike Huckabee is too soft on issues of immigration and he raises taxes. McCain, who I love, is an angry old codger. Guiliani appears to be a crook. Thompson is boring and too much of gun lover.

    Mitt is a man of faith, a financial genius, and is experienced working with both politically parties to actually accomplish things. His personal life is not a mess which I think DOES matter. And in his speech he quoted several John Adams who happens to be one of my American heroes!! So, it goes without saying that he has good taste.

    Mitt is from Michigan. Michigan needs help and I believe him to be truly committed to getting Michigan back on it's feet. We need someone who actually cares about us and has the economic smarts to turn things around.

    Go, Mitt! I hope this speech gives you the momentum you need to make it to the White House.

    December 6, 2007 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  8. jesse, Sandy, UT

    Justin from New York, you need to study our own doctrine a little more. Whatever you just said about our comittment is also misunderstood. Remember, it's a part of our doctrine to uphold and sustain the law. Romney doesn't represent us as mormons, he might represent the nation. Remember that, and get over your over-zealous pride. Also someone asked if the bible was a king james version or the mormon version. Go online and you'll notice our official book is the king james version.

    December 6, 2007 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  9. John, Michigan

    I just hope a president doesn't serve only one party but does serve the Constitution and our Republic.

    December 6, 2007 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  10. Tom Dedham, Mass

    When Mansoor Ijaz, a New York financier and commentator of Pakistani ancestry, asked former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney about putting a Muslim in his presidential Cabinet, Romney responded by saying he "cannot see that a Cabinet position would be justified"

    And now he preaches equality.

    Posted By Joe, Philadelphia, PA : December 6, 2007 12:09 pm

    The entire question was would Romney put a muslim in his cabinet just to help deal with the middle east situation.

    His response was that having someone just because someone is muslim does not warrant putting them in a position like that.

    He said he will appoint who the most qualified person is, NO MATTER what they "are".

    Funny that this guy said this in a FORUM, BUT NOBODY has EVER SECONDED WHAT HE SAID, NOBODY.

    Totally out of context, Joe,

    That would be like me calling you a genius and leaving it at that, but the WHOLE thought is "You are a genius, compared to a nitwit".

    December 6, 2007 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  11. Greg, NY, NY

    george bush has a library?

    Posted By HISTORY REPEATS, NY : December 6, 2007 10:27 am

    Yes he does, reportedly 2 years ago it burned down. Spokesman Tony Snow said that both of the President's books had been burned. He also stated that the President was very upset because he hadn't yet finished coloring in the second one.

    December 6, 2007 01:22 pm at 1:22 pm |
  12. John, Anaheim, CA

    "and in return they fill your heads with crap. The earth is only ten thousand years old? God made women from Adam's rib? Gays are agents of the devil?"

    Posted By Aaron Smithsburg, Maryland

    Not they that have filled Christians heads with crap, but you Aaron (didn't you realize that you are a hypocrite because you use a name from the Bible, thing that you don't believe in?)

    It's not easy to live holy, sometimes people will fall down, but doesn't mean that we should judge them as a bad man as long as they want to repent from their mistakes.

    It's your right to never trust Bible and it's your right to live as a bad man. We the Christians will never judge you for whatever you are doing with your own self. If we matter with gay and abortion that's because we don't want our kids to kill the innocent would be babies just like you that never want to get killed, right?

    While with gays, again it's your right to live as a gay, but we don't want the government (the one that will be responsible in front of God if they legalize gay marriages) to legalize the gay marriage as this will confront God.

    So, everybody can see who is doing the brainwash and filling heads with crap? the Bible or you, the hypocrite?

    Mr. Romney, in this case you right. May God pure your deep heart and become our President.

    God bless America.

    December 6, 2007 02:25 pm at 2:25 pm |
  13. Darrin, COLUMBUS OH

    Honestly, who cares if he is a Mormon, Baptist, or Muslim?Anyone who uses their religious beliefs to influence politics should never be a politician. Church is where you talk about faith. A government office is where you talk about law and public policy. I'm so sick of these flag-waving, Bible-thumping hypocrites who don't even realize that being a Christian is to be Christ-like.I don't care how many Bibles you own or how many times you go to church and neither does God. Anybody who has to sell their faith to a bunch of strangers is a fake. Romney, you are a phony who will say anything to get elected.

    December 6, 2007 02:50 pm at 2:50 pm |
  14. Chanda, Fort Payne, AL

    The George Bush library is the first George Bush, not the current president.

    December 6, 2007 02:56 pm at 2:56 pm |
  15. Who Knows?

    As a non-organized religion follower, I have this theory that non-Mormon Christians have such a problem with Mormon Christians (yes, JESUS CHRIST Christians) because it makes them the new Jews.

    December 6, 2007 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  16. dick bohanon,la,ca

    freedom of religion
    should also be
    freedom from religion.
    beliefs imposed are not beliefs
    they are doctrine.
    a person who professes primary faith to a religion might not be able to
    put the country and ALL its people
    above their beliefs.
    those that say they can probably will
    be kicked out for respecting other's
    i wouldn't vote republican anyway
    their level of corruption and self-importance
    defies belief.

    December 6, 2007 04:34 pm at 4:34 pm |
  17. T. Tim, Lodi, WI

    Letting religion into politics could result in Talibanization, or another Inquisition, or theocracy. Do we want that in the US? Plus, there is NOT only one religion in the US. Anyone who believes that only one religion counts has their head buried in the sand and their heart is devoid of tolerant compassion and love.

    December 6, 2007 04:52 pm at 4:52 pm |

    CNN i cannot believe you deleted my comment it was completely relevant to the conversation and was responded to the 5th grader post done by John, Anaheim, CA. i mean how can you allow THAT to be posted spewing ignorance about gays and non-christians, and written by someone that obvioulsy doesnt know how to read and write very well. and i come in with a well written response against that hateful religious hypocritical post that guy posted and you delete it??!?!?!?!?!!?

    December 6, 2007 05:44 pm at 5:44 pm |
  19. Mary Lubert, Lamoni Iowa

    Response to Post Cissy Baker,

    I'm glad CNN posted the info in the split screen. I know the truth now. It helped put Mitt's speech in context. If Huckabee or any other decides to give a speech about faith, then I'm sure CNN would do the same.

    December 6, 2007 05:45 pm at 5:45 pm |
  20. Agnostic

    How will he treat those who have no religion, the atheists and agnostics among us?

    December 6, 2007 05:54 pm at 5:54 pm |
  21. john williams san diego, ca.

    religion is not a problem for me as long as that religion does not support peoples as Osama Bin Laden, Ted Kennedy and Jimmy Carter.

    December 6, 2007 09:08 pm at 9:08 pm |
  22. Anonymous

    Posted By Greg, NY, NY –

    HAHAHA its been a long time since a comment on here has made me laugh.

    December 6, 2007 10:16 pm at 10:16 pm |
  23. Sean, Santa Barbara, CA

    Stein E.B. NJ:

    "...conspiracy theorists thinking that this person would have Israel's interests first..."

    It's not a conspiracy theory when voting history, legistlation brought forward, money trails to AIPAC, and public comments all prove you wrong. You can call people names all you want, but facts are something that you can't get away from.

    Keep in mind Romney is a top tier candidate even with hundreds of people posting aganist his religon every day. If a Jewish person did not put Israel first and was not willing to have Americans killed for a welfare country then they would be a viable candidate depending on their other positions.

    Sorry, I don't think that you are a conspiracy theorist, but I do think that you are quite naive in that comment.

    Jon Stewarts is a Jew and i'll vote for him any day of the week, but thats because I know he'll put America and Americans first.

    December 7, 2007 01:13 am at 1:13 am |
  24. L, NY

    Aaron, Sounds like you based your view of Christianity on what you've seen in people? I challege you to live your life in a better way.

    December 7, 2007 09:10 am at 9:10 am |
  25. Lu, New york

    proud2bliberal, Our laws were derived from biblical principles. Liberals have worked hard to change those laws and now we are paying the consequences. Our only hope is getting back to those principles the country was built on. I've noticed when true Christians adhere to the Ten Commandments they are generally very happy and healthy people, as this nation once was. You ought to try the real thing.

    December 7, 2007 09:21 am at 9:21 am |
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