Thursday, January 03, 2008

Utah Governor Held 1996 Meetings On LDS Doctrine and Modern Government

Blog from the Capital today calls attention to an investigative article published earlier this week by the Salt Lake Tribune detailing a series of meetings held in October 1996 by then-Utah Governor Mike Leavitt. Leavitt, a Mormon, is now Secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The meetings, held with close staff and advisers in anticipation of his re-election, explored how teachings from the Book of Mormon and the church's Doctrine and Covenants could apply to modern government. Meeting early in the morning at the Governor's Mansion, the group ultimately settled on a series of principles for implementation that are not overtly religious-- free agency, accountability, equality, stewardship, marriage, unity, goodness, heritage, worship, safety and a sense of order. The Tribune article has links to minutes of the five meetings plus links to related documents. After inquiries from the Tribune, Leavitt requested that the documents be removed from public view by the State Archives because of the private nature of participants' comments. However, as reported by a second Tribune article, the State Archives decided on Monday that the documents would remain available to the public.