Greetings from Des Moines, Iowa, home of today’s Des Moines Register GOP debate – the last one before the January 3 Iowa Caucuses. Takes place at 2 pm Eastern. I’m staying at the Hotel Fort Des Moines, which needs a renovation but holds sentimental value since it’s where I met my now wife, during the last caucuses in 2004.
Lots of folks looking at this Mike Huckabee quote from this Sunday’s New York Times where the former Arkansas governor and Baptist minister asks, “in an innocent voice," "Don’t Mormons believe that Jesus and the devil are brothers?"
Mitt Romney, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, this morning didn’t take too kindly to that remark, telling NBC that "attacking someone’s religion is really going too far."
For those looking for an answer to Huckabee’s question, here’s what the church says:
"We believe, as other Christians believe and as Paul wrote, that God is the father of all," a spokeswoman for the LDS church, Kim Farah, told the AP. "That means that all beings were created by God and are his spirit children. Christ, on the other hand, was the only begotten in the flesh and we worship him as the son of God and the savior of mankind. Satan is the exact opposite of who Christ is and what he stands for."
(Is that a no? I’m not sure.)
The fireworks will likely ensue later today.
More in a bit –-
UPDATE: My colleague Teddy Davis did some research on Mr. Huckabee’s question. Here’s what he writes:
Mormons believe that all beings — including Jesus and the Devil — are sons and daughters of God. But while they are both his "spirit children" only Jesus was "begotten in the flesh" and the Church of Latter Day Saints does not put the Devil on the same plane with Jesus Christ whom they worship as "the Savior of Mankind." See below for the church’s official statement (which was provided by Michael Purdy, a spokesman for the Church of Latter Day Saints):
"Like other Christians, we believe Jesus is the divine Son of God. Satan is a fallen angel. .. the Apostle Paul wrote, God is the Father of all. That means that all beings were created by God and are His spirit children. Christ, however, was the only begotten in the flesh and we worship Him as the Son of God and the Savior of mankind."