There may soon be a Mormon president in this old world.
No, I'm not talking about Mitt Romney. I'm not even talking about the United States.
Yeah Samake is running for president of Mali -- an African nation that also happens to be about 90% Muslim.
So, here's the obvious question: Has Samake's Mormonism been a factor in the campaign? The amazing answer is, "No." Even though Samake and his family are thought to be the only Mormons in the entire country, Samake claims there's little prejudice. His assertion is supported by the fact he won the mayoral race in Ouelessebougou a few years ago by a landslide.
Samake is considered the "media favorite" and "frontrunner" after his bold -- some would say fearless -- defense of democracy in the face of a military coup as well as his success as a reforming, corruption-busting mayor.
He is seen as a honest politician in a country and continent that have seen precious few.
Voting was originally scheduled for Sunday, April 29. The election will likely be delayed because of that coup, but it appears it will go forward ... eventually. We shall see.
Turning around a country that's one of the poorest in the world and is heavily dependent on foreign charity is a monumental task, and yet Mali's Muslims may look to a Mormon to pull it off.