This is an archived article that was published on sltrib.com in 2012, and information in the article may be outdated. It is provided only for personal research purposes and may not be reprinted.
Utah folklore has it that, to secure statehood and become part of the American political system, Brigham Young or some other Mormon leader divided a congregation in the Tabernacle into two equal parts: One half was told they were now Republicans and the other half were Democrats. True or not, for a century Utah had its share of Democratic governors and members of Congress.
Recently, however, Utah has become so red that even great Democratic candidates don't have a chance. Case in point: this year's gubernatorial race.
Why is it that Utahns will most likely vote for Gov. Gary Herbert? He has not shown a vision, nor has he given us leadership.
Peter Cooke, on the other hand, is a highly respected two-star general and a known leader. He has a great desire to take Utah forward but needs the opportunity to do it. For those who care, he is also an active Mormon.
Yet, because Cooke is a Democrat his chances are slim. As an independent, I find this embarrassing. Isn't it time we look at the candidate instead of just the party?