Compare and Contrast
On one side is the perception that the power of the Religious Right is waning — the GOP frontrunner is Giuliani, who doesn't support the Right's agenda. Steven Thomma of McClatchy Newspapers summarizes the state of the Right and speculates about reasons for their declining influence. Does the Right not have a leader to rally around (either a prez candidate or someone like Dobson)? Do the new leaders, such as Rick Warren, clash with the old political platforms? Has Iraq, poverty, economic justice, and the environment overtaken even abortion? Has the success with the late-term abortion ban and gay marriage bans satisfied enough people (and brought enough backlash) that the movement is running out of steam? The article ends with a quote by Richard Land president of the Southern Baptist Convention's Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission:
If the Republicans are foolish enough to nominate a pro-choice candidate, they give the Democrats a license to go hunting evangelical votes.
On the other side is a look at how Democrats are doing just that. This is described in an article by Eve Conant in Newsweek. Howard Dean and all of the candidates are making the rounds and many have an Evangelical liaison on staff, something Kerry didn't do until after he had the nomination secured. Richard Land said,
Dean told me how the Democrats were pro-life in that whey wanted a country in which abortion was rare. I said, 'I agree, but we disagree how to get there.' Still it certainly was a change in tone.
Which leads to the question: Is the Right being co-opted or are we being sold out again?