Over at The Corner, David French asks “Whither the Pro-Obama Evangelical?”
In 2008, the media celebrated Mr. Obama’s gains with young Evangelicals after he doubled John Kerry’s numbers with Evangelicals under 44. His gains were most pronounced in the swing states (where he obviously concentrated his efforts). Then, the pro-Obama Evangelical message emphasized “social justice” over abortion, appealed to Christian longing for unity and our weariness with the culture wars, and argued that Obama was a new kind of Democrat, one willing to listen to and work with Evangelicals.
Some evangelicals have subsequently turned from Obama, including Mr. French, who is a founder of Evangelicals for Mitt. He offers three points for discussion:
1. “First, many of the “Evangelicals” who worked most diligently to advance President Obama’s cause have turned out to be, well, not all that Evangelical.” Evangelicalism has been having an extended argument about the necessity of Hell and Judgement. Some evangelicals, especially the young don’t want to hear about them and have turned from the church; Obama appeals to the unorthodox side of the debate. Who are you to judge?
2. Young E’s helped elect Obama, but social justice hasn’t worked out quite as rapidly or effectively as expected. Obama is also a failure in correcting poverty, providing jobs, ending the wars, and purifying Gitmo. You may judge when it comes to these matters.
3. Obama turned a corner on various aspects of the sexual revolution, not only through approval, but by forcing or attempting to force American taxpayers, including the religious, of course, into subsidizing abortion, transgender surgeries, and other lifestyle choices. If you judge, you are subject to judgement and conscience is no excuse.
The church is present at the convention, including evangelicals, says the Huffington Post. The author even provides photos. The New Republic says Democrats are all about the church and religious expression, in “Debunking the ‘Democrats Hate God’ Lie”. Never mind what you heard at the convention yesterday. Heck, even Elizabeth Warren spoke about her years teaching Sunday School. Clearly people of real faith are Democrats and Republicans are hypocrites. Which of them cited Matthew 25:40?
In addition, the president of the American Values Network, Burns Strider tells us that he is a Democrat because of his faith and that you don’t have to mention God to live a Godly life. “Values over process. Results over the superficial. Heart over strategy. Examples lived from the Word, not the example of a word.” (What does that mean?) The Democratic Party is all about diversity that brings us together in unity. “The Democratic Faith Council sponsored panel discussions to packed rooms with panelists who are Baptists, Mormon, Jewish, Catholic and the entire, diverse bandwidth of the American religious tradition. We discussed our role in sharing the narrative of our party. We discussed the power of our collective efforts as the voice who tells the story, the story of values and faith of the Democratic Party.” I wish I could read a transcript of what they said. If their faith seems to be in the Democratic Party more than in God, that is only because we are looking at words.
I still do not understand faith within the Democratic Party. I’m trying; I’ll keep reading. Please feel free to make helpful reading suggestions to help me manage this conundrum. How do we ignore scripture about the sanctity of life, the sanctity of marriage, the necessity of individual charity, the idea that there is only one way to God, through the Christ? Seriously, how does anyone embrace the Bible, Christian faith and the Democratic Party at the same time?