Regarding the article "LDS in politics an uphill battle for 164 years" (Jan. 6): When Joseph Smith ran for president of the United States, he cited in his platform his goal of paying off the national debt as President Andrew Jackson had done.

Smith's charisma was evident when he said he valued a country with "space for enterprise, hands for industry, heads for heroes and hearts for moral greatness."

He also felt that the other presidential candidates running in the year 1844 were full of "jealousy, hypocritical pretensions and pompous ambition."

The same could be said of the candidates in 2008. I think if portions of Joseph Smith's platform were presented today (without his name attached) they would readily be smiled upon by voters.

James A. Marples