The study from the University of Sydney says Mitt Romney's campaign and the Mormon Church's advocacy against same-sex marriage is increasing anti-Mormon sentiment among those on the political left. Author David Smith says you can tell how a voter feels about Romney by looking at how they view the LDS Church.
Just as President Obama's successful candidacy didn't put an end to tense race relations in America, Romney's political assent hasn't cured the country of anti-Mormonism. In fact, as the data shows, Romney's rise may have lead to increased anxiety about his religion among his natural political opponents.
According to the paper, concern about Mormonism has remained relatively stable among Evangelicals, with 36 percent expressing aversion to an LDS candidate in 2007 and 33 percent doing so in 2012. But among non-religious voters, that number shot up 20 points in the past five years, from 21 percent in 2007 to 41 percent in February. There were also substantial increases in Mormon-averse voters among liberals — 28 percent in 2007 and 43 percent in 2012 — as well as moderates, who went from 22 percent in 2007 to 32 percent this year.
"Aversion to Mormons is still an important foce in American public opinion, and one that seriously affects Romney's chances even if he ultimately overcomes it," Smith writes in his paper, available online here.