Senator Rand Paul on Virtue

You know, I think abortion is always wrong. I’ve supported a variety of solutions, both state as well as federal. In fact, just last week, I introduced the Life at Conception act, which would say that the 14th amendment would defend an individual even in the womb.

But I think on the broader question of religion and politics, you know, I think liberty, itself requires a virtue — requires a virtuous people. In fact, Washington said that democracy requires a virtuous people.

Oz Guinness, the theologian, said that liberty requires restraint but the only restraint consistent with liberty is self-restraint. There’s a lot packed into that statement. But the bottom line is we must have virtue, we must have a religious bearing as a nation. The government is not always going to save us and it’s not always going to come from government.

But if we don’t know right and wrong, I think we have lost our way. I think we become unmoored and I think without the religious foundation that guides us all, I think we have a great risk of going horribly in the wrong direction.

— Republican Presidential Debate, January 27, 2016

“I am a friend of virtue and the people”

“I am a friend of virtue and the people” wrote Joseph Smith in his pamphlet, “General Smith’s Views of the Power and Policy of the Government,” where he outlined paying off slave holders to free the slaves, making prisons places of education and then freeing most prisoners.

Here is the quote in context which was written as a letter closing in 1844:

With the highest esteem,
I am a friend of virtue
and the people,