Thanks to the candidacy of Mitt Romney, the Mormon vote will send a powerful message to Washington. A vote for McCain tells the base and leadership of the Republican Party, "You can call me a cultist, smear my faith and treat my people as second-class citizens, and I'll still give you my vote." At the same time it tells the Democratic Party, "Don't even bother courting me. I'm sticking with the Republicans regardless of how badly they treat me." The result will be a continued lack of attention from both major parties.

The church is wisely politically neutral. This does not mean that the Mormon people cannot flex their collective muscle. Our numbers in the Western states are large enough to constitute a powerful swing vote. It is time to demand respect. In November, vote for Obama, send postcards to both national parties stating why and let them know that if they want your vote in the future, they'll need to earn it.

Alan L. Morrell