Select Page

“Church attempts to influence Deseret News readers have sometimes backfired. During the 1936 presidential campaign, Church President Heber J. Grant [who detested the Democrats’ New Deal policies] had another member of the Church’s First Presidency write an unsigned editorial accusing Franklin D. Roosevelt of ‘knowingly promoting unconstitutional laws and…advocating communism,’ among other things. The editorial outraged Mormon voters. Many saw the conservative hand of the Church presidency in the editorial; over seventy percent of the letters sent to the First Presidency office soon after its publication condemned the editorial. One historian noted that over 1,200 Latter-day Saints canceled their subscriptions to the Deseret News because of the editorial. It had clearly caused a backlash, and a few days after its publication, 69.3 percent of Utah’s votes went for Franklin D. Roosevelt and the New Deal.”

~John Heinerman and Anson Shule, The Mormon Corporate Empire, page 38; see also D. Michael Quinn, Reuben Clark: The Church Years, page 75~