The Loudmouth Protestant

July 12, 2007

How Shall I Vote? Let Me Count the Ways

It is no surprise to me that this election season, faith is playing a big role. It’s as predictable as the separation of church and state. How do we figure that the separation of church and state is really being enforced when on any given Sunday across the US, politicians can roam into a sanctuary under the guise that they were “just in the area,” grab the microphone and do a little public service announce about something that just happens to be relevant to the campaign. And to throw more salt in the wound, the most gangster candidates will have the audacity to leave before the sermon starts (I’ve seen it happens countless times)–how they figure that shines favorable upon a naturally judgemental congregation, I have no idea.

So now the big question is, how is religion going to affect the vote for the 2008 election and how should the candidates go about letting the voters know their religious beliefs? According to a random poll mentioned in a NY Times Politics piece candidates are just encouraged to show up at churches regardless of their intentions. I don’t believe this is a good strategy but it has long been the politicians staple on the campaign trail to kiss a couple of babies and show up at a church or two.

So as a Christian do I feel like the faith of a candidate is going to impact my vote? I am almost sad to say that it isn’t going to be the a huge determining factor. Truth be told there are too many candidates that exist and who ran in years past that profess one thing and do the exact opposite when they land in office. It’s like so-called Christians who loudly proclaim that Jesus is the love of their life but don’t conduct themselves as such.

Given that, I don’t think I will be voting or not voting for someone based on their Christianity or lack thereof. It’s even harder to fathom considering most of these candidates based on their faith–with the exception of Barack Obama and Mitt Romney–because they are all recieving media training on how to God-speak to voters. So why, knowing all of this–that you’re being fed lies by a bunch of well-trained yuppies–would anyone bother to make faith the basis of the vote when the faith is not genuine, it’s just a means to an end.

It is clear that once again it brings us back to the chief-cornerstone, that solid rock upon which we stand, and the only person that can help any of us make a good decision about who we vote for, Christ. I think the media coaches and candidates might want to take some time to talk to Him too.



  1. Interestingly enough, I held the same sentiment about candidates (I’m not going to tell you I really mean Bush) who claim Christ but behave un-Christ-like. Specifically I asked myself, “what type of Christian would oppose abortion based on faith, but would govern the state that loves to fry people? I mean, isn’t the governor the person with the ultimate authority to save an condemned inmate’s life? Wouldn’t this mean that he ratified the excution of dozens of humans in his state? How do you reconcile trying to preserve one life while allowing the termination of another? Is it purposeful that the executed people were probably mostly men of African descent? Does that make him a racist Christian?”

    But I heard an interesting message. The teacher taught that there is a biblical basis for the death penalty. God gives and preserves life. God made provisions for that in His law. God’s law says “Fry Carl-Lee, not Free Carl-Lee!” The logic is that we preserve life by eliminating one who terminates life. That’s God’s judgment.

    I don’t know if I agree or disagree with the logic or the theory. But it made me think. If he (Do I mean Bush?) had that in mind, and he was trying to adhere to God’s word by ratifying executions, is his heart in the right place? Even if I disagree with the decision to execute, is he being a Christian?

    The point of this is to say that our faith should be the basis of our decision, not the faith of the candidate. We should want God to vote through us. Pray that God guides your decision (and finger) on election day.

    Comment by Jay — July 12, 2007 @ 4:23 am | Reply

  2. I doubt I will vote based on solely on religion, too, but it will definitely be a determining factor I take into acccount. In my opinion, I believe a Democrat will win the 2008 election, though I can’t really say if it will be Barack or Hillary…

    Comment by Sherry — July 12, 2007 @ 6:39 pm | Reply

  3. I think politicians use faith as a decoy to get people to vote with stinging issues…like the whole moral majority of yesteryear when same-sex marriage would supposedly mean the end of the world…but yes, we should continue to have unequitable education and ignite wars for no reason…(do I mean Bush, too?)

    Comment by Tarani — July 19, 2007 @ 7:42 pm | Reply

  4. The ultimate issue for me is abortion. If a candidate respects life as a sacred gift of God that we should not wantonly destroy, then he gets my vote. In that sense, the religion of the candidate influences how I vote, but not in the sense of religious affiliation or profession only.

    I’d rather vote for a pro-life atheist or Muslim then for a pro-abortion Christian.

    Comment by renaissanceguy — August 16, 2007 @ 5:28 am | Reply

  5. Evangelical Christians are already beginning the process of selecting the Republican presidential candidate whom they can anoint as their successor to George W. Bush. Somehow, evangelicals have this deluded idea that President Bush is one of them. How they came to this delusion both fascinates and escapes me. Bush is anything but one of them. However, most evangelicals believe he is, and today it seems that illusion is greater than reality, anyway. Bush proves that more than anyone I have ever known. But enough about Bush.

    The question burning in the minds of evangelicals today is: Which Republican candidate for president will we anoint? There are several possibilities, but apparently Congressman Ron Paul is not one of them.

    For example, Jerry Falwell’s widely distributed National Liberty Journal, in its March 2007 edition, had a major section entitled “Campaign 2008-Identifying the Republican Presidential Candidates.” A total of ten Republicans made the Journal’s list. The ten listed were Sen. Sam Brownback, Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani, Sen. Chuck Hagel, Gov. Mike Huckabee, Rep. Duncan Hunter, Sen. John McCain, Gov. George Pataki, Gov. Mitt Romney, and Rep. Tom Tancredo.

    However, even though Rep. Ron Paul has also formed a presidential exploratory committee (something Gingrich has not even done yet), his name was conspicuously absent from Falwell’s list. Why is this? Why do evangelicals ignore Ron Paul?

    Ron Paul received his Bachelor’s degree from Gettysburg College. He received his MD from Duke University. He began his OB/GYN career in 1968. He was also an Air Force Captain and a member of the Air National Guard.

    Ron Paul has served as a conservative congressman from Texas for over 16 years. He currently has a 100% rating from The Conservative Index, which is probably the most relevant and accurate reflection of a congressman’s true conservative record out there.

    Furthermore, unlike most Republicans, Paul’s commitment to the life issue is more than rhetoric. For example, during the 2005 congressional session, Rep. Paul introduced H.R. 776, entitled the “Sanctity of Life Act of 2005.”

    Had it passed, H.R. 776 would have recognized the personhood of all unborn babies by declaring, “human life shall be deemed to exist from conception.” The bill also recognized the authority of each State to protect the lives of unborn children. In addition, H.R. 776 would have removed abortion from the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court, thereby nullifying the Roe v Wade decision, and would have denied funding for abortion providers. In plain language, H.R. 776 would have ended abortion on demand. (It is more than interesting to me that none of the evangelicals’ pet politicians, including George W. Bush, even bothered to support Paul’s pro-life bill.)

    In addition, Ron Paul has been the most outspoken defender of constitutional government in the entire congress-bar none. He has often stood virtually alone against federal abuse of power, corruption, and big government.

    Currently, Ron Paul is one of only a handful of congressmen that dares speak out against the emerging North American Union, NAFTA superhighway, and the Security and Prosperity Partnership agreement, all of which are being promoted by the White House in concert with the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR).

    Speaking of the CFR, two of the U.S. senators listed as presidential candidates in Jerry Falwell’s Liberty Journal, Chuck Hagel and John McCain, are current members of the CFR.

    For his entire political career, Ron Paul has served foursquare upon the principles of constitutional (limited) government, less taxation, right to life, and personal liberty. Ron Paul is a conservative’s conservative, a principled constitutionalist of the finest order. How is it, then, that Jerry Falwell and other evangelicals ignore him?

    The answer to the above question is not easy to determine. Maybe today’s evangelicals are more concerned about being accepted by the GOP establishment than they are supporting principled, conservative candidates. After all, Paul’s willingness to openly oppose his own party has caused him to be blacklisted by party loyalists and apologists. Therefore, it might be that our illustrious evangelical leaders are unwilling to be identified with Paul lest they share the same ostracism.

    Another reason might be that today’s evangelicals are extremely shallow in their discernment. They seem to love Republican candidates who wear religion on their sleeve. Whether the candidate walks the walk does not seem to matter near as much as whether he talks the talk.

    Hence, evangelicals are already warming up to John McCain, Newt Gingrich, Mitt Romney, and even to Rudy Giuliani. Falwell’s National Liberty Journal (NLJ) calls Gingrich “a true American statesman.” McCain is called “pro-life.” Already, McCain has spoken for Dr. Falwell at his Liberty University. (Don’t be surprised if Falwell becomes one of McCain’s strongest proponents.) The NLJ quotes Evangelicals for Mitt as saying, “Gov. Romney . . . shares our values.” Of Giuliani, NLJ states, “On issues such as national security, battling terrorism and combating crime, Mr. Giuliani is very popular with conservatives.”

    However, the truth is, neither Gingrich, Giuliani, Romney, nor McCain deserves the support of principled conservatives. Each of these men has numerous examples of failure and compromise of essential conservative values.

    Another trap evangelicals seem to fall into is the puerile desire to “pick a winner.” Wanting to be sure that they are seen dancing with the last man on the floor, evangelicals are trying to figure out who that man will be so as to be ready to receive their invitation to the dance. And since they don’t expect to see Ron Paul issuing dance invitations, they have already written him off.

    However, rather than letting themselves be used as dupes by the GOP machine, if America’s evangelicals would determine to stand on principle by supporting only those candidates who most courageously champion our principles (regardless of their popularity, or lack thereof, with the Republican hierarchy), they might actually be able to bring real change to American politics.

    As it is, evangelicals continue to call George W. Bush “one of us,” they continue to drink Kool Aid from the faucet of Republican propaganda, and they continue to ignore Ron Paul.

    Comment by Thomas — September 27, 2007 @ 1:23 am | Reply

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