"Mormonism has a complicated political history," said Joanna Brooks, ReligionDispatches columnist and author of The Book of Mormon Girl. "It was only in the late 20th century that we saw a strong rightward turn."
Brooks said many LDS liberals were disappointed by Romney's now infamous comments about the 47% who do not pay income tax. They believe his remarks conflict with what their shared faith teaches about caring for the poor.
However, they also recognize Romney is the face of their faith right now. Brooks said she respects the burden Romney carries as the most public Mormon in the country.
"I feel incredibly protective of Romney," she said. "As much as I may disagree with his political stances, I don't want his religion to be an unfair target."
Yet Brooks said Romney represents only "one slice of our faith."