Vote for Principles Over Party, Politics and Pocketbook
With the 2008 election not too far away I felt inspired to create a video regarding upholding principles over political parties. I have also gathered quotes from LDS prophets and other leaders on the subject: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_dmeoz0g29E
Now, I am not caring today, for myself, anything at all about a political party tag. So far as I am concerned, I want to know what the man stands for …When I find out these things, when I know who it is who should receive my support, and I care not what his party tag is…Today, our duty transcends party allegiance; our duty today is allegiance to the Constitution as it was given to us by the Lord. (J. Reuben Clark, Jr., CR 10/62:8)
They serve to organize factions…to put in the place of the delegated will of the nation the will of the party, often a small but artful and enterprising minority…Let me… warn you in the most solemn manner against the baneful effects of the spirit of party…The alternate domination of one faction over another, sharpened by the spirit of revenge…has perpetrated the most horrid enormities…It [the contention between the parties] serves always to distract the public councils and enfeeble the public administration. (Washington’s Farewell Address)
“We honor these partners [friends outside the Church] because their devotion to correct principles overshadowed their devotion to popularity, party , or personalities.
“We honor our founding fathers of this republic for the same reason. God raised up these patriotic partners to perform their mission, and he called them “wise men.” (see D&C 101:80.) The First Presidency acknowledged that wisdom when they gave us the guideline a few years ago of supporting political candidates “who are truly dedicated to the Constitution in the tradition of our Founding Fathers.” (Deseret News, November 2, 1964.) . . .
“Our wise founders seemed to understand, better than most of us, our own scripture, which states that “it is the nature and disposition of almost all men, as soon as they get a little authority . . . they will immediately begin to exercise unrighteous dominion.” (D&C 121:39.)
“To help prevent this, the founders knew that our elected leaders should be bound by certain fixed principles. Said Thomas Jefferson: “In questions of power, then, let no more be heard of confidence in man, but bind him down from mischief by the chains of the Constitution.”
“These wise founders, our patriotic partners, seemed to appreciate more than most of us the blessings of the boundaries that the Lord set within the Constitution, for he said, “And as pertaining to law of man, whatsoever is more or less than this, cometh of evil.” (D&C 98:7.)
“In God the founders trusted, and in his Constitution—not in the arm of flesh. “O Lord,” said Nephi, “I have trusted in thee, and I will trust in thee forever. I will not put my trust in the arm of flesh; . . . cursed is he that putteth his trust in man or maketh flesh his arm.”” (2 Nephi 4:34.) (“Civic Standards for the Faithful Saints” 59-60)
…each priesthood holder should use his influence in the community to resist the erosion process which is taking place in our political and economic life. He should use the political party of his choice to express his evaluation of important issues. He should see that his party is working to preserve freedom, not destroy it. He should join responsible local groups interested in promoting freedom and free competitive enterprise, in studying political issues, appraising the voting records and proposed programs, and writing to members of Congress, promoting good men in public office, and scrutinizing local, state, and federal agencies to see that the will of the people is being carried out. He should not wait for the Lord’s servants to give instruction for every detail once they have announced the direction in which the priesthood should go. Each member should exercise prayerful judgment and then act. [Ezra Taft Benson – God, Family, Country]
We must be devoted to sound principles in word and deed: principle above party, principle above pocketbook, principle above popularity. [Ezra Taft Benson – God, Family, Country]
“We engage in the election the same as in any other principle; you are to vote for good men, and if you do not do this it is a sin; to vote for wicked men, it would be sin . Choose the good and refuse the evil. Men of false principles have preyed upon us like wolves upon helpless lambs.…. Let every man use his liberties according to the Constitution. Don’t fear man or devil; electioneer with all people, male and female, and exhort them to do the thing that is right. We want a President of the United States, not a party President, but a President of the whole people…and…. Have a President who will maintain every man in his rights .” (Hyrum Smith, 1844, DHC-6:323)
“No political party is justified to continue in existence unless it clearly states the principles which it advocates, the platform upon which its candidates stand, and then with integrity, when and if elected, carry out those principles and live up to that platform. Except that be the case, we as Latter-day Saints should not align ourselves to any party, because we do not have the basis upon which we can make an intelligent decision. We must know what they stand for before we can favor them with our vote.” (Henry D. Moyle, CR-4/52:36)
Joseph Smith was against the party system and said: “In the next canvas we shall be influenced by no party consideration…the partisans in this county who expect to divide the friends of humanity and equal rights will find themselves mistakes — we care not a fig for Whig or Democrat; they are both alike to us; but we shall go for our friends, our tried friends, and that cause of human liberty which is the cause of God. We are aware that ‘divide and conquer’ is the watchword with many, but with us it cannot be done — we love too well — we have suffered too much to be easily duped — we have no cat’s paws amongst us. [Times & Seasons – 3:651]