Evangelicals are unlikely to vote for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney because the former Massachusetts governor's Mormon faith claims to be the only true Christian church, a Southern Baptist leader says.
"I have a very difficult time with the perspective [the Mormon church holds] that, 'we are the true expression of Christianity and all other forms of it are wrong and false and apostasy and heresy,'" says R. Philip Roberts, president of Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.
Roberts, a Southern Baptist expert on Mormonism and author of "Mormonism Unmasked," spoke at a session titled "Mitt Romney: Should Evangelicals Vote for a Mormon President?" during the International Society of Christian Apologetics' annual meeting in Kansas City earlier this month.
If elected president, Romney would be the first Mormon to serve in the White House. Twenty-five percent of Americans and 33 percent of Republicans say they won't vote for a Mormon presidential candidate, according to a poll in World magazine.
Roberts, in his speech, said Presidential hopefuls are free to belong to any religion, but voters can use their "substantive informed religious opinions to inform [their] voting habits."
Roberts also raised concerns that the Mormon view of God, Jesus, salvation and the end times differ greatly from traditional Christian beliefs.
"They have an epistemological subjectivism that is way outside the realm of modern thinking and Christian reason," Roberts said. "Subjectivity rules within the Mormon church. Subjectivism trumps reality; it trumps rational thought; it trumps objective investigation."