"One of the speakers who will follow me today has crossed that line, I think," Romney said. "Poisonous language doesn't advance our cause. It's never softened a single heart nor changed a single mind. The blessings of faith carry the responsibility of civil and respectful debate. The task before us is to focus on the conservative beliefs and the values that unite us — let no agenda narrow our vision or drive us apart."
Mouw has a reputation for preaching Christian civility in public discourse. He has even written a book on the subject: "Uncommon Decency: Christian Civility in an Uncivil World." He speaks with conviction of the need for dialogue and discussion as opposed to rhetoric and name-calling.
"Those of us who have made the effort to engage Mormons in friendly and sustained give-and-take conversations have come to see them as good citizens whose life of faith often exhibits qualities that are worthy of the Christian label, even as we continue to engage in friendly arguments with them about crucial theological issues," Mouw concluded. "Mitt Romney deserves what every politician running for office deserves: a careful examination of his views on policy and his philosophy of government. But he does not deserve to be labeled a cultist."
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