The importance of Mitt Romney's faith

Will Mormonism help or hurt the Republican presidential candidate?


This is a rush transcript from "The Five," August 30, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

GREG GUTFELD, CO-HOST: So, apparently, Romney will talk religion tonight which the left will love. It plays in the anti-intellectual, anti-science stereotype the media dumps on the right with glee. I'm ambivalent about faith. It's like alien software to me, like high school physics or a Cameron Diaz film. I try to insert it in the hard drive my brain and it just won't jive.

No offense to those where it works. It's a mistake to assume that religion makes you dumb. And it's even dumber to assume that it makes you anti-science.

No one called Carl Sagan stupid when he pondered alien life even if he sounded like one. To me, religion is no different. Pondering what's outside ourselves.

But putting faith aside, I'm keen on the biological clues that hint at our origins. That's what I find proof. For example, the first question a child asks after can you feed me is where did I come from? Or if you're Dana Perino, it's -- can I buy shoes?

The desire for food and water has an answer -- 7-Eleven obviously.

But the where did I come from question informs where do we go next? For that question is programmed inside us. Chaos cannot explain a desire that's already installed.

We are unique in creation and that we ponder these larger questions. What is the point of existence? Is there an afterlife? Will Bob ever pick up a check?

So go ahead and laugh at Mitt's attempt to make sense of the world. It is no less valid that your own belief system, whatever that is. It's your laughter however that makes you seem unbelievable.

So, Bob, you wrote a column on religion?

BOB BECKEL, CO-HOST: Yes. Today in USA Today. First of all, there were many nights I did see illegal aliens -- I mean, aliens.


BECKEL: I can't get it that out of mind.

More planets in more nights than I could possibly imagine and I talked to them for hours.


BECKEL: This is the difficulty for Mitt Romney. The Mormon faith is a complicated faith. Its tenets are not terribly different than the values and other things but Judeo-Christian understanding of it is difficult. I'll tell you, I'd be careful about how far you go down this road. I know it's a net winner for him. But I also it's something that you need to take what you are talking about to make an issue on it.

I have occasionally done this myself. I'll admit it. In the end, the Church of the Latter Day Saints has its value structure, Judeo-Christian value structure but it's a tough one to get to. I'll tell you, I don't know who suggested this.

ERIC BOLLING, CO-HOST: Mentioning it?

BECKEL: Talking about it risky thing.

GUTFELD: I want to play a SOT from Paul Ryan which addresses what Bob is talking about and I think in a fairly coherent, cogent manner.


REP. PAUL RYAN, REPUBLICAN VICE PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: Mitt and I also go to different churches, but in any church the best preaching is done by example. Our faiths come together in the same moral creed. We believe that in every life, there is goodness. For every person, there is hope. Each one of us was made for a reason, bearing the image and likeness of the Lord of life.



BOLLING: Yes, had everyone watch and listening -- I think the issue is done now, Bob. It's been touched on, it's been addressed. Move on. Everyone who brings up Mormonism --

GUTFELD: I want Andrea in this. Mistake to bring this up?

ANDREA TANTAROS, CO-HOST: I don't think he should. I know a lot of people are saying should he, shouldn't he? I'm a little offended that people under Mr. Hope and Change would have to explain their faith. Something that's so jealously protected by the First Amendment.

But in Bob's defense quickly, he did pick up the tab the other night in the hotel bar.

BECKEL: Lots of tabs, by the way.


GUTFELD: How will his play with the media? Don't the media see reverence and authority as passe?

DANA PERINO, CO-HOST: Well, if he doesn't bring it up, all headlines are like he didn't bring it up. When he does bring it up, oh, he did bring it up.

It didn't feel that way four years ago when we were taking about a very different church.

BECKEL: You know, this argument, they gave it to JFK, don't bring up and they start to say anything, the media will haunt you on it forever if you don't.

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