Shortly after 1:00 a.m. during MSNBC's election night coverage, MSNBC's Lawrence O'Donnell ridiculously claimed that Democrats are more tolerant of Mormonism than Republicans and blamed the "Bible-thumping side of the Republican party," which he asserted is "where anti-Mormon feeling resides," for political analysts discussing Mitt Romney's Mormon religious beliefs, in spite of polls showing Republicans more inclined to accept a Mormon President than Democrats. O'Donnell:
Let's just remember the reason his religion was discussed in political terms by analysts at any point was the Bible-thumping side of the Republican party, and that's where anti-Mormon feeling resides. It doesn't exist in the Democratic party. If he was running in Democratic primaries, it never would have come up as a factor.
Chris Matthews agreed:
Sure. Most Democrats don't know about it. They don't even get it.
But, as previously documented by the MRC's NewsBusters blog, during a December 2007 appearance on PBS's The McLaughlin Group, O'Donnell ranted against Mormonism, referring to it as a "ridiculous religion" that is "full of crazy beliefs." Further indicting Romney, he asserted:
He believes, if he believes the faith of his fathers, that black people are black because in heaven they turned away from God, in this demented, Scientology-like notion of what was going on in heaven before the creation of the earth.
O'Donnell also has a history of raising Mormonism as a problem for Romney on his Last Word show on MSNBC. From April 2012:
Now part of Romney's religion problem is that he's a part of a new religion. Established religions like Judaism, which is about 4,000 years old, and Christianity, which is about 2,000 years old, don't easily warm up to new religions like Romney's, which is only 182 years old. Mormonism was created by a guy in upstate New York in 1830 when he got caught having sex with the maid and explained to his wife that God told him to do it. Forty-eight wives later, Joseph Smith's lifestyle was completely sanctified in the religion he invented to go with it. Which Mitt Romney says he believes.
But in October 2011, FNC correspondent Carl Cameron cited polls showing that Democrats are "least tolerant" of Mormonism:
But a Quinnipiac poll of voters taken this year says fully 68 percent of Republicans are comfortable with a Mormon President, as are 64 percent of independents. Democrats are the least tolerant, with 49 percent comfortable with a Mormon President.
-- Brad Wilmouth is a news analyst at the Media Research Center