A survey by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life explores the views of American Mormons as opposed to the usual focus on how Americans view Mormons. This approach makes the findings especially valuable, and they are an important addition to ReligionLink’s resources on The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.
With Mitt Romney, a Mormon, surging in his quest for the Republican presidential nomination, the Pew survey also provides a timely window into the faith community that Romney – as well as Jon Huntsman, another Mormon and GOP candidate – hail from.
The new Pew survey, titled “Mormons in America: Certain in Their Beliefs, Uncertain of Their Place in Society,” fleshes out many of the issues covered in the ReligionLink guide.
Among the key findings:
- More than six in 10 Mormons (62 percent) say the American people as a whole are uninformed about Mormonism.
- Nearly half (46 percent) say that Mormons face a lot of discrimination in the U.S. today.
- Mormons resemble white evangelicals in many respects, though they see evangelicals as often hostile to their faith.
- Yet most think acceptance of Mormonism is on the rise: Nearly two-thirds (63 percent) say Americans are becoming more likely to see Mormonism as part of mainstream society, and 56 percent say the American people are ready for a Mormon president.
- Two-thirds of Mormons say they are politically conservative, and three-quarters of Mormon voters identify with or lean toward the Republican Party.
- Mormons espouse some beliefs that are distinct from traditional Christianity, but almost all Mormons consider themselves Christians.