Two polls out of Utah show that the majority-Mormon state is tipping away from Republican nominee Donald Trump and towards independent “Never Trump” candidate Evan McMullin.
The former CIA operative and active Mormon barely registers on polls in the other ten states on which he is on the ballot, but in two recent Utah polls, McMullin has surged within striking distance of Trump and Democrat nominee Hillary Clinton.
Utah-based Y2 Analytics conducted a poll, released Wednesday, that put Trump and Clinton at 26 percent each, and McMullin at 22 percent. Libertarian nominee Gary Johnson received 14 percent support in the state.
In another survey of 403 likely Utah voters conducted Oct. 10-12, Trump enjoyed a 34-28 lead over Clinton, with McMullin further behind at 20 percent.
The Beehive State’s five electoral votes have been rock-solid Republican for decades, meaning that normal political calculations of a path to victory for either Trump or Clinton haven’t accounted for the possibility that this deeply red state might not end up in the Trump electoral college tally Nov. 8.
Last weekend, the Mormon Republican establishment simultaneously ganged up on their party’s presidential nominee. 2012 Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, himself a Mormon, called on Trump to step down from atop the GOP ticket, as did fellow Mormons former Utah Gov. Jon Huntsman, current Utah Gov. Gary Herbert, and incumbent Sen. Mike Lee. The black, female, Mormon, politically correct rising star Rep. Mia Love and ethnically Jewish Mormon Rep. Jason Chaffetz both dropped their support for Trump. Utah’s senior senator, Orrin Hatch, denounced Trump but did not withdraw his endorsement, as did Utah’s Attorney General Sean Reyes and Rep. Rob Bishop. All are Mormons.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints-owned Deseret News said in an editorial on Sunday that it was departing from eighty years of silence on presidential endorsement issues to call for Donald Trump’s resignation as the Republican nominee for president. The Deseret News editorial board was silent as to why it did not also call for Hillary Clinton’s departure from the Democrat ticket for covering up the rape and abuse of women throughout her lifetime.
Why would Mormons be so rabidly anti-Trump? It’s because of their history as a persecuted sect, and as opportunistic, cuckservative welcomers of rapefugees and non-white mass immigration.
“That whole Muslim ban with Trump – oh, that’s hit bad with Utahns, and we have that whole history with persecution and [the ban on the early Mormons],” says Calene Van Noy, a lifelong Mormon involved with Utah’s caucus-based political scene. “There’s a big huge movement to help the refugees, and we’ve got the missionaries who go all over the world and come back with such a love of the people.”