Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Did You Know That Former President Bill Clinton Almost Became A Mormon?

Former President Bill Clinton was considered the star of the show by many at the recently-concluded Democratic National Convention. His speech in Charlotte on Wednesday September 5th, 2012 was viewed by many as the highlight of the convention and a key source of Obama’s post-convention momentum. Amidst all the other controversy which broke out, such as the debate over including "God" in the party platform, Clinton may have seemed like an island of stability.

So Clinton decided to give a brief post-mortem to Buzzfeed. He believes that the key to an Obama victory in November is for President Obama to convince voters that no other leader could have done better in stabilizing the American economy than he did. But then Clinton, without making any reference to Mitt Romney, decided to share a personal anecdote about one of his experiences with Mormons.

Clinton also recalled a moment from his youth in Arkansas being approached by two or three Mormon missionaries in Hot Springs, where they explained the Mormon view.

Clinton spoke highly of their effort, recounting the different degrees of heaven as was explained to him 50 years ago, describing it as a pyramid with many levels that put Hitler and Stalin at the very bottom, faithful Mormons on top, and everyone else in between.

Clinton, a Baptist, said the sticking point for him was leaving his friends and family out of the top level of heaven.

“I didn’t want to leave all these other people behind,” he said.

Of course, Bill Clinton's subsequent history indicates there may have been a few other sticking points, too. One of those "sticking points" triggered his impeachment by the U.S. House, although he was not convicted by the U.S. Senate. In the end, Bill and Hillary Clinton decided their marriage was too important to bust up over his peccadilloes.

Bill Clinton would have undoubtedly ended up in leadership posts had he joined the Church. Certainly he would have ended up being a stake president at some point. But his personality clearly shows that secular politics was his prime calling in life. Regardless of what one thinks about his ideology, Bill Clinton was and is a skilled politician.

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