The G.O.P.’s Assertive God Squad

Mar 3, 2015

By Frank Bruni

Another presidential campaign is taking shape, and potential Republican candidates are beginning to speak with extra care — and sometimes with censorious hellfire — about certain social issues. As ever, they’re bowing to a bloc of voters described as Christian conservatives.

But these voters are a minority of Christians. They’re not such representative conservatives.

They have a disproportionate sway over the Republican Party. And because of that, they have an outsize influence on the national debate.

That’s an inescapable takeaway from new data compiled by the Public Religion Research Institute, a nonpartisan group that interviewed more than 50,000 Americans last year.

To put together what it is calling the American Values Atlas, the institute divided survey respondents into more than a dozen faith-related categories, some of which factored racial identity into the equation as well. White evangelical Protestants and black Protestants are separate groups, as are white Catholics and Hispanic Catholics.

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4 comments on “The G.O.P.’s Assertive God Squad

  • Traditional political wisdom is that you must straddle the middle and force your opponent into a small slice on the left or right. Remember how Nixon funded McGovern so he would have a too-far-left candidate to run against.

    The Republicans are ignoring that wisdom. I doubt the strategists really want to do this. It is just the religious right organisations have taken over the party. They are ideological, not practical. This is a Good ThingTM.

    In the primary situation candidates have to pose as crazy right wing, but not so crazy they cannot shed those positions for the general election.

    Even with unlimited Roberts funding, there is only so much they can do to sell extreme right wing views to voters who do not like them.

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  • This has me extremely worried about the future of the world! This is the primary reason I’ve become such a vocal Atheist! I can’t believe so many grown-up people actually believe in the stupid, nonsensical, supernatural idiations in those horrid bible books! AND, that in America, this crap is actually required as a prerequisite to getting a position in politics! Anti-Constitution, BTW!

    So…do I actually believe these educated people believe in this Jesus/bible crap? Nope! But I do believe they have discovered what a great Con it is, and a great way to get MONEY! This money is doing all the talking in our government today! Anti-Constitution, again!

    But…who better to sell bull-shit to? People that believe in Xtianity! The big interest corporations that want to control the world know that critical thinking is dangerous for them, so, to keep the money flowing into their pockets, they have to keep up the religious hate, to keep the wars going! Religious influence in government is, beyond a shadow of doubt, the most destructive scam possible! Even though 250 years ago, our framers of the Constitution made sure religion had to be separate, out of government, it is overwhelmingly running our country!

    The most important mission in America today is squishing religions out of government! All of the enormous issues we face today could be eradicated if only we could educate people to critically, reasonably, evaluate how delusional religiousity really is!

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  • In any other free western country other than America, the GOP would be an extreme religious right wing fringe party that would get but a small percentage of the vote. That people so crazy as this can be elected to rule the a world’s super power is poor reflection on the psyche of the America voters. The world has change but America hasn’t. Civilization has moved on. The cold war is over. The free market is like a plague of locusts raping the world but there is no Planet B.

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