55 years ago today - circa Mar 14, 1966

Some ... circulated a proposal which urged anti-Birch Mormons to petition the First Presidency and the Quorum of Twelve's president for the "removal of Benson from the Quorum of the Twelve." According to this "OPERATION CHECKMATE" handout, Benson's transgressions were "flagrant insubordination," "pulpit misuse," and "demeaning the President of the Church by callously taking advantage of his advanced years." ... The First Presidency defined the situation as "a crisis."

["OPERATION CHECKMATE," original typed document, Williams Papers, also photocopy inscribed, "J D Williams, March 14,1966," folder 2, box 124, Robert H. Hinckley Papers, Western Americana, Marriott Library. Although undated, this document was drafted after the J. Reese Hunter letter of 8 Mar. 1966 (which "OPERATION CHECKMATE" referred to) and before the First Presidency statement of 17 March, which was the kind of official statement recommended by "OPERATION CHECKMATE," 4. From D. Michael Quinn, Ezra Taft Benson and Mormon Political Conflicts, Dialogue: A Journal of Mormon Thought 26:2 (Summer 1992), also in Quinn, The Mormon Hierarchy: Extensions of Power Salt Lake City (Signature Books, 1994), Chapter 3.]

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