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The God Strategy: How Religion Became a Political Weapon in America
The God strategy : how religion became a political weapon in America. Responsibility David Domke and Kevin Coe. Physical description p. Online Available online. Oxford Scholarship Online Full view. Green Library. D65 Unknown. Our research shows that the relationship between religion and politics in America changed in with the election of Ronald Reagan, and has yet to change back.
Across numerous measures and thousands of public communications, we found that politicians today engage in substantially more public religiosity than did their predecessors and that this religiosity has a much more partisan tone. The campaign is the culmination of two and a half decades of the God strategy, and that's why it sounds and feels so different from what people are used to.
They've had mixed success. Mike Huckabee and Barack Obama have probably been the most effective, in part because their task is easier.
The God Strategy: How Religion Became a Political Weapon in America by David Domke
Both have backgrounds that make their engagement with religion seem authentic - Huckabee as a former pastor and Obama as a community organizer who worked with religious groups. Others have faced greater challenges. Mitt Romney, in particular, has had a difficult campaign.
As a Republican candidate, he's expected to emphasize his faith. However, many conservative evangelicals hold negative views of Mormonism, which has led Romney to deemphasize the particulars of his religion. It's been a difficult tightrope for him to walk, one made even more difficult by the fact that Huckabee has become a frontrunner. No, I think it's quite bad for democracy.
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The nation's founders were wise enough to know that religion and politics are at their best when they function largely independent from one another. It's that wisdom that led them to include in the Constitution a prohibition on religious tests for public office. What the omnipresence of the God strategy has created is a de facto religious test.
This is a disservice to the candidates and to the nation. Democracy is at its best when good candidates run for office and the finest of those candidates has a chance to win.
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