Mormons in Congress meet up for monthly faith chat

FILE PHOTO - Amid smiles and tears, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon, R-Calif., announces his intention to retire from Congress at the end of the year after eleven terms, Thursday, Jan. 16, 2014, on Capitol Hill in Washington. Joining an exodus from Congress by both Democrats and Republicans, veteran McKeon tearfully announced Thursday that he’s retiring after 21 years, stepping down as House Armed Services Committee chairman. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON, DC (AP) – Some members of Congress who are Mormon have been meeting for breakfast in what’s recently become an informal caucus.

The U.S. House counts eight representatives belonging to the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. That group now meets monthly to hang up political discussions and instead talk about faith.

Calif. Rep. Buck McKeon, who is Mormon and chairs the House Armed Services Committee, tells the Salt Lake Tribune the breakfasts must occasionally stand in for church because he often travels on Sundays.

At a recent meeting, Utah Republican Rep. Jason Chaffetz brought a dozen Dunkin’ Donuts for his colleagues.

McKeon says the Senate’s seven LDS members haven’t yet joined in the House gatherings. But he adds that he is trying to bring more members to the bipartisan group.

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