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As Reagan said…

By Mark Silk — June 18, 2008

In an interview with Brody, Barack Obama gives his version of the meeting he had with religious leaders in Chicago last week–who ran the gamut, he notes, from UCC president John H. Thomas to Franklin Graham. Obama says he began by quoting Ronald Reagan’s famous remark at the 1980 National Affairs Briefing in Dallas, to […]


By Mark Silk — June 17, 2008

I’ve been looking at the presidential match-up in recent Survey USA state polls, which divide up respondents by worship attendance into “regularly,” “occasionally,” and “almost never.” In just about every case, John McCain wins the regularlies, while Obama wins the occasionalies and almost nevers. (Alabama, where all three categories go equally strongly for McCain., is […]

Ixnay on the ulgarityvay

By Mark Silk — June 17, 2008

In a communication to me, reader B. DelMonico writes, “I appreciate this forum, but could I ask you to please not post comments that use the term “Papal Bull S***”, or at least edit the term out. It is flat-out offensive and has no place in civil discourse.” Being offensive I do not consider grounds […]

Virginia 5

By Mark Silk — June 17, 2008

For connoisseurs of religion in congressional races, Virginia’s fifth district offers an interesting prospect this year. The fifth extends from liberal Charlottesville out into the state’s southern hinterland, known instate as Southside). The incumbent is Virgil Goode, a Richmond native and Baptist who lives in Rocky Mountain, deep in the southwest corner of the district. […]

Whose rights?

By Mark Silk — June 17, 2008

My friend Marc Stern, general counsel of the American Jewish Congress, has an op-ed in today’s Los Angeles Times worrying about the implications of gay rights for religious liberty. What concerns him is that any religiously based objection to gay rights–such as a devout physician’s desire not to be compelled by law to inseminate a […]

Prolifers for Obama

By Mark Silk — June 16, 2008

As his op-ed in today’s Chicago Tribune makes clear, Douglas Kmiec has no intention of dialing back his support of Obama. By arguing, publicly and repeatedly, why a staunch opponent of abortion like himself can, as a matter of moral principle, vote for the presumptive Democratic nominee, he is becoming the most important national voice […]

Obamacals in the offing?

By Mark Silk — June 16, 2008

If you want to know what gives the Religious Right old guard fits, it’s this kind of Democrat love from the likes of CBN’s Brody and Stephen (The Faith of George W. Bush) Mansfield. Jerry Falwell’s widow, on voting for McCain: “I think you don’t have much of a choice. It has to be one […]

Half Way Covenant

By Mark Silk — June 16, 2008

Reporting on Barack Obama’s sermon at Chicago’s Apostolic Church of God yesterday, the Chicago Tribune‘s Jeff Long and Christi Parsons write, “The theme of fatherly responsibility is important for Obama, especially now that he is the presumed Democratic nominee for the White House. While his dogma is decidedly liberal, his talk about personal responsibility crafts […]

Big Tim

By Mark Silk — June 15, 2008

Tim Russert’s death has been so big a story because he was one of those fixed stars in American public life–a journalistic personality who you expected to be there, shining away, as presidents came and went. Usually those stars just grow dim, like Chronkite or Brokaw, reappearing as hosts or commentators for this or that […]


By Mark Silk — June 14, 2008

Disarmed v. stiff-armed. At least I think “stiff-armed” is what the founder of Charisma magazine meant to write in characterizing evangelicals’ treatment thus far by John McCain. Anyway, color Steven Strang impressed and worried after participating in last week’s meeting with Obama. Add to Favorite Articles

You Don’t Mess with the Foxman

By Mark Silk — June 13, 2008

John Hagee and Abraham Foxman have kissed and made up. In a “Dear Abe” letter, Hagee apologizes for causing offense in re: his theological musings on the Holocaust (from 1999, he clarifies). In a “Dear Pastor Hagee” response, Foxman declares himself satisfied–though not without a smack at Hagee’s eschatological presumption: “We mortals sometimes get into […]

Not by design

By Mark Silk — June 13, 2008

Speaking of Gov. Jindal, it seems he will soon have the latest species of anti-evolution bill on his desk. That will happen once the Louisiana House and Senate work out a minor difference in SB 733, which “would allow science teachers, upon a request by a local school board and approval by state education officials, […]

Recede ergo

By Mark Silk — June 13, 2008

Bobby Jindal’s excellent exorcism adventure is making the rounds. You figure that what’s no problemo in the bayous is big problemo in the veepstakes. Add to Favorite Articles

What’s the Message?

By Mark Silk — June 13, 2008

At its just concluded annual meeting in Indianapolis, the Southern Baptist Convention passed a resolution that at first glance seems utterly un-noteworthy. All but one of the nine “resolved” paragraphs encourage the kind of political engagement that has been a normal part of the evangelical world for nearly three decades. But buried two-thirds of the […]

The Catholic vote, looking toward the general

By Mark Silk — June 12, 2008

The latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll has Obama leading McCain among Catholics by 47 percent to 40 percent, almost exactly the same figure as the 47-41 percent lead he enjoys among the entire sample. Inasmuch as Obama is leading McCain among Hispanics 62-28, however, that means he has his work cut out for him when […]

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