As NPR Reports:
Bob Jones University used to be a “station of the cross for aspiring presidential candidates,” NPR’s Ari Shapiro reports on Friday’s All Things Considered. Candidates like Ronald Reagan, Bob Dole and Pat Buchanan all spoke at the school, a “bastion of the most conservative brand of evangelical Christianity,” Shapiro says.
But he explains that tradition changed after the 2000 campaign, when candidate George W. Bush campaigned there without mentioning the school’s ban on interracial dating. As Shapiro reports:
“The school ultimately dropped the ban, and apologized. President Bush apologized, too, for failing to speak out. Today, Bob Jones no longer officially endorses or hosts candidates.”
Until a decade ago, Shapiro reports, the school “referred to Catholicism and Mormonism as cults.” That meant it wasn’t a natural stop for Romney, a practicing Mormon.
“So this week something happened that would have been unimaginable 20 years ago,” Shapiro says: Romney came to Greer, S.C. — just a five-minute drive from Bob Jones — and didn’t make a stop.
Instead, he focused on foreign companies like BMW, Bosch and Hitachi that have invested in Greenville.
“I want to make America the most attractive place in the world again for investments,” Romney said during a campaign stop.
And, as Shapiro puts it, that let him make his pitch “without having to worship at the altar of the evangelicals.”
Which leads me to wonder: has Bob Jones really stopped calling Mormonism a cult? Or is that just bad reporting?
14 thoughts on “Mitt Romney Skips Traditional Visit to Bob Jones University”
they still call it a cult. may not agree with romney politically, but I am glad to see him not go. there seems to be no moderate when fundys become political. if mccain hadnt tried to pander to the fundy right we might not know who palin was today. fundys never change.
In my 2005 “Cults” class it was still conidered one.
They have a CLASS on cults?! What the heck?!
Yep, I took that class. It was one of those easy A Bible classes, instead of the busywork ones, which was good, so I could get other stuff done in addition to it, even though it was required. I remember the professor in that class showed the trailer for “Earth Vs. The Flying Saucers” one day in class. That was entertaining.
When I was in their Cults class a couple years ago, they still taught Mormonism as a cult. They may just not be as outspoken about it anymore – didn’t they endorse Romney in ’08?
Why, yes, BJIII did endorse Mitt in 2008. I distinctly remember Steven Jones frantically covering for ol’ Triple Sticks the following Monday in chapel, explaining it was his dad’s position and not that of the University. Good times were had by all.
Yes, BJIII endorsed Mitt, but Stephen really does not like to be politically involved. He has tried to a certain degree to keep BJU less involved politically than ever before. I like that, personally. Now, BJIII still has the influence that causes BJU to appear involved. Slowly that will fade.
I wonder if Brigham Young U has a class on cults and includes the IFB movement/NOTwork. Amazing how IFB churches and colleges can be so blind to the log in their own eye.
Dr Boob Jones the first, cult leader.
The Mormon Church has always taught that all other churches are false except their own. That is why Mormonism was founded Mormonism is and has always been a visious cult. The Tabernacle choir cannot hide this truth.
I’m a liberal Democrat, but I’ve always said that I can stomach someone like Mitt Romney more than I can stomach the likes of Rick Santorum, Newt Gingrich, or Michele Bachmann. Since Romney refuses to speak at BJU, he has now won a few more points with me. 😎
it will always be a cult and I can’t imagine the university ever saying otherwise
No big deal about Mitt not visiting BJU. Dr. Bob Jones endorsed him in 2008 stating that we are trying to elect a president, not a preacher.
I am an IFB and would call Mormonism a cult. I also expect them to believe I am in a cult. It doesn’t have to be a negative word. I will be voting for Romney regardless of his “cult” status. I respect Mormons as the finest and most clean-living people on this planet!