Concerns about Romney's faith quieter but not gone

January 15, 2012 - 9:42 AM
Romney 2012

Republican presidential candidate, former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, holds up seven-month-old Ellen Whitaker as he campaigns at American Legion Post 15 in Sumter, S.C., Saturday, Jan. 14, 2012. (AP Photo/Charles Dharapak)

GREER, S.C. (AP) — The prospect of a Mormon president appears to be less alien to South Carolina Republicans who are giving Mitt Romney a second look after his failed 2008 run.

Still, worries about his faith persist in a state where one pastor jokes there are "more Baptists than people."

Voters preparing for the Jan. 21 primary are weighing whether Romney's religion should matter so much when they can't pay their bills and a Democrat many distrust occupies the White House.

Four years ago, the Romney campaign directly took on suspicion about The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Conservative Christians, including Protestants and Roman Catholics, do not consider Mormons to be Christian, although Mormons strongly do.

This time, Romney has no formal religion committee and rarely mentions his faith unless asked.