Huntsman is more ‘spiritual’ than religious

Matt K. Lewis Senior Contributor
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Observers are starting to think Jon Huntsman might be downplaying his Mormon faith.

From today’s Politico:

“Is Huntsman distancing himself from LDS faith?” the Salt Lake Tribune asked on May 9, noting that he’d attended a nondenominational megachurch in Charleston, S.C. that weekend.

But it really exploded after a Time Magazine interview where Huntsman appeared to go wobbly at a key moment. Asked point blank whether he was still a Mormon at all, Huntsman sounded as if he was dodging. “That’s tough to define,” he said.

My former Politics Daily editor Melinda Henneberger authored that Time Magazine profile. Today, she took to her Facebook page to discuss her question to Huntsman in greater detail.

“I asked [Huntsman whether he was still a Mormon] with no more definitive result,” she said, “and when I followed up later with three different aides, two told me they really didn’t know; I’d have to ask him. A third, John Weaver, said, ‘You and I are both Catholics. You know how some people are really Catholic, some people are less so and some people aren’t much at all?'”

Later Henneberger added, “Instead of answering, [Huntsman] started talking about being spiritual rather than religious. Which is interesting, if not exactly uncommon, only he never would [never] finish the thought.”

Update: On “Good Morning America” this morning, Huntsman said:

I believe in God. I’m a good Christian. I’m very proud of my Mormon heritage. I am Mormon. Today, there are 13 million Mormons. It’s a very diverse and heterogeneous cross-section of people. And you’re going to find a lot of different attitudes and a lot of different opinions in that 13 million.

Matt K. Lewis