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The Religious Right and Contemporary American Politics

 
 
candidone1
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 01:41 pm
McGentrix wrote:

Defending a nation sometimes means going to war. Some people oppose war at all costs. It hardly constitutes "warmongering" although I understand how some people would like to propagandize it as such.


Defending which country? Iraq or the US?
I don't oppose war at all costs, but I do believe in the UN, and I do believe that Bush both oversold the war vis a vis WMD, and overexaggerated the relationship between Saddam and al Qaeda. Warmongering is a strong word and was used quite intentionally, especially after Bush so proudly touted himeslf as "The War President"

McGentrix wrote:
The only alienation of pro-choice advocates comes from the speculation of may happen in the future. Bush has certainly not hidden his personal philosophy of being against abortion, but I have yet to see him push any legislation ahead that would make abortion illegal.


Well, he hasn't pushed anything through yet, but his views on same sex unions, stem cell research, and abortion all come from the same side of the spectrum. I find it hard to believe that someone with "such strong moral convictions" would stand idle as any of these things continued to take place.
"Hasn't yet" doesn't mean "won't".

McGentrix wrote:
Those no-bid contracts were pre-determined during Clinton's term. It's convenient that Cheney was in charge of Haliburton at the time, but has little influence on the no-bid contracts. Read up on it, I know much has been written about it.


Sure.
Do you have links or book titles? I do have a difficult time finding anything credible on that issue.
TIA

McGentrix wrote:
Bush is a man of conviction for sure. However he is also the president of ALL the United States, not just the red ones. His administration will push an agenda that it thinks is best for all. It will not please everyone, but no president ever will.


Maybe we'll agree to disagree on this one. It's his final term, and he's going to put in place what his "convictions" tell him to.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 01:48 pm
McG wrote:
Quote:
Bush is a man of conviction for sure. However he is also the president of ALL the United States, not just the red ones. His administration will push an agenda that it thinks is best for all. It will not please everyone, but no president ever will.


Let us agreed that Bush is the president of all the citizens of the U.S. As unfortunate as that seems to a large number of people. It is a fact that he is. And let us assume (we can't know this) that he is doing what he considers to be best for all. And we'll agree also on the fact that no president will ever please every voter....horror of horrors.

And I suspect we can agree that there are many us, a huge percentage of the population, who don't agree with him that what he's doing is best for us all? This discussion is not limited to only those who agree on these points or those who disagree. These points of agreement and/or disagreement are not the subject of this thread. The subject of this thread is the effect of the FAR on American politics.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 02:07 pm
candidone1 wrote:
McGentrix wrote:

Defending a nation sometimes means going to war. Some people oppose war at all costs. It hardly constitutes "warmongering" although I understand how some people would like to propagandize it as such.


Defending which country? Iraq or the US?
I don't oppose war at all costs, but I do believe in the UN, and I do believe that Bush both oversold the war vis a vis WMD, and overexaggerated the relationship between Saddam and al Qaeda. Warmongering is a strong word and was used quite intentionally, especially after Bush so proudly touted himeslf as "The War President"


Hindsight has proven that the reason's given for war were wrong. However, the past cannot be changed. We are there now and we are faced with the challenges of creating a free Iraq for Iraq. The war on terrorism will not be an easy road to follow, but it is a worthy one as the world will be better off because of it.

Quote:
McGentrix wrote:
The only alienation of pro-choice advocates comes from the speculation of may happen in the future. Bush has certainly not hidden his personal philosophy of being against abortion, but I have yet to see him push any legislation ahead that would make abortion illegal.


Well, he hasn't pushed anything through yet, but his views on same sex unions, stem cell research, and abortion all come from the same side of the spectrum. I find it hard to believe that someone with "such strong moral convictions" would stand idle as any of these things continued to take place.
"Hasn't yet" doesn't mean "won't".


Yes, he was so opposed to stem cell research he provided funding for it.
"Hasn't yet" also doesn't mean "will".

Quote:
McGentrix wrote:
Those no-bid contracts were pre-determined during Clinton's term. It's convenient that Cheney was in charge of Haliburton at the time, but has little influence on the no-bid contracts. Read up on it, I know much has been written about it.


Sure.
Do you have links or book titles? I do have a difficult time finding anything credible on that issue.
TIA


I think Boortz describes this best:
Quote:
HALLIBURTON .. THE REAL STORY

I am so completely sick and tired of hearing these Bush-hating, left-wing, Saddam-appeasing neo-socialists rant and rave about Halliburton that I could ..... well ... I could just spit. What morons. These are people who hate capitalism, hate the profit motive, and believe that every evil visited on the world is done so in the name of corporate greed. Losers all.

To listen to these irrational cretins you would think that this entire war in Iraq was being fought for one purpose, to enrich Halliburton. It would be not at all surprising if some of these anti-capitalist geeks believed that Bush arranged for those airplanes to fly into the World Trade Towers for that one purpose .. enriching Halliburton.

Try this experiment. The next time you hear some liberal parrot squawk about Halliburton just ask them one simple question. "Well, pal --- since you're such an expert on Halliburton, why don't you tell me just what it is that Halliburton does? Name one product or one service that Halliburton provides."

Don't hold your breath waiting for cogent answer.

Part of the perceived evil that is Halliburton is the fact that Dick Cheney once ran the company. As everyone knows, we should strive mightily to avoid ever placing anyone with the know-how and ability to run a multi-million dollar corporation in a position of responsibility in the political realm. Actually making a success of yourself in the private sector disqualifies you for public service, while not having any actual discernable private sector job skills is the supreme qualification for public service.

So ... let's get to the bottom of this. Did Bush or Cheney do something underhanded or illegal in handing some rather lucrative contracts to Halliburton for infrastructure and other work in Iraq?

We'll start with another question you can ask your bedwetting leftist friends. Ask them if they've ever heard of LOGCAP. They will tell you that they don't know what that is. You won't be at all surprised. LOGCAP is the Logistics Civil Augmentation Program created by the United States Army. It is a program that uses a competitive bidding process to award a contract to a corporation to be on call to provide whatever services the Army might need ... right then. Some brilliant thinkers in the Army came to the conclusion that it might not be such a swell idea to screw around with competitive bidding processes for logistics and other services during wartime. Imagine that.

Halliburton won the competitive bidding process for LOGCAP in 1992. They then lost that bidding process five years later in 1997. In spite of the fact that Halliburton no longer held the LOGCAP contract, Bill Clinton went ahead and awarded a no-bid contract to Halliburton to do some work in the Balkans supporting U.S. peacekeeping actions. Odd, isn't it. The same people who are screaming about Halliburton right now had absolutely nothing .. nada .. nunca .. not one thing to say about Halliburton when it was the Clinton Administration that was handing out contracts .. with no bidding, by the way. You might also be interested in knowing that Al Gore was quite a fan of Halliburton. Gore's reinventing government panel had some very complimentary things to say about Halliburton and the services it provides to the U.S. government. Ahhh ... but what does Al Gore know, right?

That brings us to 2001. It's time for bidding on the LOGCAP contract again. Halliburton is right in there, and wins the bid. This means that at the time of the Iraq War Halliburton had the bid for providing logistical and other services to the U.S. government. They were the go-to company. So, along comes the U.S. Army with a fat contract for Halliburton to put out oil-well fires in Iraq and all hell breaks loose. To the left this is all the proof you needed to show that this whole war was about oil and enriching Bush pals.

Recap: Clinton awards no-bid contract to Halliburton at a time when Halliburton did not hold the LOGCAP contract. Bush awards contract to Halliburton at a time when Halliburton DID hold the LOGCAP contract.

So ... one last question for your mindless leftist friends. Well .. make that two questions. Ask them if Clinton went into the Balkans to enrich Halliburton. They'll say no. Then ask them if Bush went to Iraq to enrich Halliburton. They'll say yes. At this point do all that you can to have your friend institutionalized .. for they are beyond all help.


Quote:
McGentrix wrote:
Bush is a man of conviction for sure. However he is also the president of ALL the United States, not just the red ones. His administration will push an agenda that it thinks is best for all. It will not please everyone, but no president ever will.


Maybe we'll agree to disagree on this one. It's his final term, and he's going to put in place what his "convictions" tell him to.


He is going to do what he believes is best for the country. He is going to do what 51% of the country expected of him to do.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 02:32 pm
ACQ wrote:
Quote:
Lola, my point, poorly made, was that underlying economic conditions such as low wages, lack of health insurance, and job insecurity, all of which define the working conditions at Wal-Mart, are major contributing factors to the marginalization of many of those attracted to the evangelical right.


I'm not following you on this Acq., but it may be a mute point, given what I'm going to say next.

I do agree with you that members of the FAR are feeling helpless and unable to further their goals. And they have decided to fight back. My point is that the members of this most current version of the FAR have been organizing since 1980. And I'm identifying this date because it marks the beginning of a specific movement to influence the government of the U.S. That they're doing it because they feel they have no control and that the progressives are doing what they can for the same reason, is a given as far as I'm concerned.

It is a battle over values. Both sides value sets differ and are probably mutually exclusive. That's why it's known as the Culture Wars. Which value system is best is not the subject of this thread.
I can, however, admit to a motivation I have for starting the thread. And it's based on an assumption. My assumption is that there are many well meaning, God fearing Christians and other reasonable citizens who share many progressive values who do not realize 1. that this organization effort has been taking place and 2. that the force and value system behind the organization is as extreme and incompatible with progressive values as it is and 3. that the FAR is so close to achieving their goals.

My assumption is not provable. Or, that is, I know of no research that has taken this as a question to study. If anyone has any information about this, I would love to know about it.

I'll admit also to a wish of mine. I want to expose these aspects (1, 2 and 3, and maybe some others) to the light of day in order to increase awareness. I wish to discuss the history of the FAR, their values system, how the FAR has organized, what their numbers are and who seems to be behind it. As well as any information regarding how close they are to achieving their goals and whether or not they may be successful. Whether the value systems can co-exist is a subject, I think for another thread.

So can we agree to discuss this matter, given I have been direct and honest about my motivation and intent?

Quote:
I am certain you and other therapist are sensitive to the economic constraints of your clients.


It's good to know this.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 02:37 pm
Quote:
I believe the intent of this thread is to be a critique of just what is the relationship of the religious (FAR) right and current politics in america. The intent , at least, is not to attack or defend either ideology but rather to explore and observe what influence, in any, currently manifests itself. Well, at least that's my intent. So perhaps we can move back a few steps from 'your just bigots' and offer some conversation about what is happening (or not).Thank you, thank you all very much.


Thank you Dys, and thank you very much. Now hopefully we can get on with it.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 02:44 pm
Dys wrote:
Quote:
However it seems to me that the current issues are pretty much more straight foreward on concrete (abortion-prayer in school-stemcell research-gay rights) and I would find it of interest to explore these events in context with americans renewed religiousity. Fair enough?


and:
Quote:
how about looking at the decline of nation/state economics, rise in multi-culural internationalism and community realignments resulting (hypothesis) in a resurgence of pentacostal/evangelical theologies?


Yes, let's go there. Please.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 03:21 pm
BBB posted an article which made this point:
Quote:
Not a political movement, strictly speaking, Reconstructionism has been influential in the development of the so-called "religious right"; it aims toward the complete reconstruction of the structures of society on Christian and Biblical presuppositions, although not in terms of "top down" structural changes, but through the steady advance of the Gospel of Christ as men and women are converted. In keeping with the Theonomic Principle, it seeks to establish laws and structures that will best instantiate the ethical principles of the Old Testament, as expounded in the case laws and summarized in the Decalogue.


This I think BBB, is an excellent point in trying to focus on a key difference in the values of the FAR as opposed to those of less fanatical Christians. It defines what I believe to be the key point of disagreement. That is, that the members of the FAR are bound by an allegiance to authority alone in making individual decisions.

When they speak of "family values" they are really pointing to an adherence to a particular point of view about what constitutes proper family values. They are depending on authority alone. This is in contrast with those who believe that they can make their own moral judgements given specific circumstances.

Further, it is the FAR's wish to force others, through stringent laws, to be governed by the authority they believe to be the true authority. Let's see if we can find evidence for this in the present day tactics of the FAR.

One piece of evidence for this is the way in which the FAR is threatened by open education. If religion is taught, they want it to be only their religion or their religion to be taught as "truth." Schools which offer courses in religion (or sex education or science) in which all religions are treated as equal, that is, the subject is to study the beliefs of each religion, is considered by the FAR to be an attempt on the part of the Secular Humanists to cause their children to doubt. How can information create doubt where none is present? Why do they object so stridently to a survey course on religion?
0 Replies
 
candidone1
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 04:31 pm
McGentrix wrote:

Hindsight has proven that the reason's given for war were wrong. However, the past cannot be changed. We are there now and we are faced with the challenges of creating a free Iraq for Iraq. The war on terrorism will not be an easy road to follow, but it is a worthy one as the world will be better off because of it.


Right.
We have taken a bad turn, given the topic of this thread.
Misguided...yes, need to fix mess that the US has made in Iraq, yes.
We agree.

Thanks for the Haliburton info.
I will continue reading based on what was posted.
Much appreciated!!


McGentrix wrote:
He is going to do what he believes is best for the country. He is going to do what 51% of the country expected of him to do.


And probably what 40 some odd percent will vehemently oppose.
0 Replies
 
BumbleBeeBoogie
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 06:38 pm
Candidone1
[quote="candidone1"][quote="McGentrix"]

[quote="McGentrix"]The only alienation of pro-choice advocates comes from the speculation of may happen in the future. Bush has certainly not hidden his personal philosophy of being against abortion, but I have yet to see him push any legislation ahead that would make abortion illegal.[/quote]

Well, he hasn't pushed anything through yet, but his views on same sex unions, stem cell research, and abortion all come from the same side of the spectrum. I find it hard to believe that someone with "such strong moral convictions" would stand idle as any of these things continued to take place.
"Hasn't yet" doesn't mean "won't".


candidone1, Bush et al will never take active steps to ban abortion, same sex marriage, etc. via constitutional amendments because they are more valuable to republicans as divisive wedge issues in elections. They are more likely to lose elections without them. Above all, they want to win and moral principles be damned!

BBB
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 07:00 pm
Re: Candidone1
BumbleBeeBoogie wrote:
candidone1 wrote:


[quote="McGentrix"]The only alienation of pro-choice advocates comes from the speculation of may happen in the future. Bush has certainly not hidden his personal philosophy of being against abortion, but I have yet to see him push any legislation ahead that would make abortion illegal.


Well, he hasn't pushed anything through yet, but his views on same sex unions, stem cell research, and abortion all come from the same side of the spectrum. I find it hard to believe that someone with "such strong moral convictions" would stand idle as any of these things continued to take place.
"Hasn't yet" doesn't mean "won't".[/i]


candidone1, Bush et al will never take active steps to ban abortion, same sex marriage, etc. via constitutional amendments because they are more valuable to republicans as divisive wedge issues in elections. They are more likely to lose elections without them. Above all, they want to win and moral principles be damned!

BBB[/quote]

Laughing Laughing Laughing
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Wed 17 Nov, 2004 10:35 pm
You may be right, BBB. But if the FAR doesn't get their way........they'll come unhinged. They were promised something and they'll expect what they get to be a lot better than a bone.
0 Replies
 
candidone1
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 09:18 am
Re: Candidone1
BumbleBeeBoogie wrote:

candidone1, Bush et al will never take active steps to ban abortion, same sex marriage, etc. via constitutional amendments because they are more valuable to republicans as divisive wedge issues in elections. They are more likely to lose elections without them. Above all, they want to win and moral principles be damned!
BBB


I'm hearing ya!
0 Replies
 
timberlandko
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 10:40 am
Just checkin' in ... late to the party, but I'm used to findin' myself in that situation. Gonna do some catch-up readin', and prolly get down to bein' my typical stubborn, contrary, opinionated, minority-view self ... this could be fun Twisted Evil

Back soon ... prolly :wink:
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 10:44 am
Good.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 01:14 pm
This should be helpful:


Quote:
Review
The Triumphs of the New Right
By Frances FitzGerald
Richard Viguerie
(click for larger image)
The New Right: We're Ready to Lead
by Richard A. Viguerie, introduction by Jerry Falwell

The Sweetheart of the Silent Majority: The Biography of Phyllis Schlafly
by Carol Felsenthal

Just after the 1980 election the ABC show called "Nightline" put the satellite technology of television to work to create an extraordinary electronic encounter between Senator George McGovern, Senator Frank Church, Senator Birch Bayh, Jerry Falwell, and Paul Weyrich. The three just-defeated senators had never met their opponents before, and the two sides knew so little about each other that both were disarmed. Instead of the usual political fencing match the debate was a raw, emotional confrontation.

One of the strange things about the debate was the apparent imbalance of the two sides. Three leaders of the Democratic party with long careers in public office were pitted against a fundamentalist minister and an almost unknown political organizer. Yet as organizers for the New Right, Weyrich and Falwell represented a coalition that had raised more money for the 1980 election than the entire Democratic party nationally.

After that election, the New Right organizers could claim that they had helped to elect over two dozen senators and a great many more congressmen, who generally could be counted on to oppose the Supreme Court decisions on busing, school prayer, and abortion, as well as to support Reagan's economic and defense policies. "Nightline" did not invite any of the new senators to meet McGovern, Church, and Bayh, for good reason: the New Right was not created by politicians but by organizers.


more here:

http://www.nybooks.com/articles/6820




Thank you very much to Blatham for that.
0 Replies
 
Ethel2
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 02:04 pm
Sorry.......that's a subscription site. I'll fill you in on the details later.
0 Replies
 
Thomas
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 03:12 pm
In last week's issue, The Economist had a special report on America's religious right. They don't like it, but they don't seem to be overly alarmed and reach the following conclusion. Which more or less corresponds with my own view of the issue.

The Economist wrote:
Attempts to ram conservative social policies into law look inevitable. They include the federal amendment banning gay marriage, though this is an uphill struggle that failed by 19 votes in the Senate last time round. Moreover, on the eve of the election, Mr Bush came out in favour of civil unions, which more than half the population, including many religious conservatives, favour. They also include extending a ban on "partial-birth abortion" to cover all third-trimester abortions, and, most important, appointing conservative judges to any Supreme Court vacancies.

This week there was a sign of what may be to come when Republicans threatened to strip Senator Arlen Specter of the chairmanship of the committee that oversees Supreme Court nominations after he said that staunch opponents of abortion were unlikely to be confirmed.

For opponents of Mr Bush, and also for many socially liberal Republicans, the election results and the trumpeted evangelical ambitions point to a big reversal: the victory of aggressive social conservatism over the small-government tradition in which morality is not legislated. It could, indeed, turn out to be something like this, but it need not. The wide variety of different opinions held by Mr Bush's religious supporters give the president, and his new administration, a lot of leeway, if they choose to look for it.

full article
0 Replies
 
Acquiunk
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 04:11 pm
I disagree with the economist's analysis. A more appropriate model is the passage of the Prohibitionamendment and the appointment of judges that would tolerate racial segregation in the early 20th century. What the radical right did then was find issues more moderate senators and congressmen supported and traded support on those issues for support for their agenda. The issues then were; support for the US entry into WWI, and pro business tax and financial policies. In both cases they won. The result was the depression and organized crime. Something similar will happen here and I suspect the issues will be tax cuts and defence with a proactive foreign policy.
0 Replies
 
nimh
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 04:39 pm
Lola wrote:
McGentrix wrote:
If I recall, the numbers of the "religious right" that voted in 2000 and in 2004 remained pretty much the same. I wonder where this sudden idea that they would "reward him with their votes in record numbers." comes from.

McG,

Your claim contradicts the number BBB has posted (thanks BBB, excellent posts). Don't recall, show us where we can read these stats for ourselves.


Exit Polls 2000

Exit Polls 2004


Lola wrote:
BBB posted this article, I'm repeating the next to the last paragraph. Show us, McG, don't just tell.
BBB wrote:
[election-day exit polling] did reveal that the rate of voters who attended church once a week leapt by 2 points from 2000 and that 64 percent of them voted for Bush.

Couple of things to mention here.

(1) First of all, to start with the basics, these numbers are incorrect - or incorrectly attributed, in any case. BBB (or rather, the author she quotes) seems to have confused two separate categories: those who attend church "more than weekly" and those who "attend church once a week".

The number of the former did indeed "leap" by 2% - from 14% to 16% of the total number of voters, to be precise. And it is of this group that 64% voted Bush.

The number of the latter, however, dropped by the very same 2% - from 28% to 26%. Of them, 58% voted for Bush.

Will come back to that later. First, let's continue.

(2) For one, focusing on those who attend church more than weekly, I'm not sure whether "leapt" is a verb that appropriately fits an in comparison unremarkable increase of just 2%. On the same count one could submit that the number of female voters "leapt" from 52% to 54% of the whole, that the number of voters between 45-59 and over 60 "leapt" from 28% to 30% and from 22% to 24%, respectively, that the number of those who are not married "leapt" from 35% to 37% - well, et cetera.

This is not just a semantic point I'm making. The point here is that the proportional increase of the most devout voters was of a relatively negligeable scale - or of a small enough scale, in any case, to make it merely one of many comparable elements that tipped the elections to George Bush.

And wait - there's more.

(3) First off, the similar increase of senior voters or of female voters can not just easily be attributed with as decisive an effect just because both groups made a similarly increased relative impact on the vote count. They can in fact be attributed such a role with much more reason. Because both women and seniors actually shifted their vote towards Bush to a significant degree. The devoutly Christian, on the other hand, were pretty much just as likely to vote for Bush this time as last time.

I.e.: in 2000, 43% of women voted for Bush. In 2004, 48% did. In 2000, 47% of seniors voted for Bush. In 2004, 54% did. However, of those who attend religious service more than weekly, 63% already voted for Bush in 2000, and 64% did now. Hardly any change there.

Calculate the effect here for a moment.

In 2000, women delivered Bush with (43% of 52% makes) 22% of the votes. Now they yielded him (48% of 54% makes) 26% of the votes. Net gain: 4%, more than his margin of victory this year.

In 2000, seniors delivered Bush with (47% of 22% makes) 10% of the votes; this time, they yielded him (54% of 24% makes) 13% of the total vote. Net gain: 3%, exactly the margin of his victory.

I'll add another group: inhabitants of big cities. In 2000, they made up just 9% of the electorate, and just 26% of 'em voted for Bush. Ergo: Bush voters from large cities made up just 2% of all voters. But in 2004, big city dwellers made up 13% of the electorate, and 39% of them voted for Bush. Ergo, the percentage of Bush voters from big cities more than doubled, to 5% of the electorate. Net gain: 3%, exactly the margin of his victory.

Now compare those who go to church more than weekly. In 2000, they delivered Bush with (63% of 14% makes) 9% of the votes; now, they yielded him (64% of 16% makes) 10% of the votes. Net gain: just 1%.

The most devout voters, in short, did not make the difference in 2004. That is to say: not to any greater degree than they did in 2000.

(4) Finally, to return to my first point re: BBB. Who do we talk about when we talk of the religious mobilisation? BBB referred, be it erroneously, to those who attend church once a week. If instead of looking at those who attend Church more than once a week, we do indeed take a bigger group - everybody who at least once a week attends religious service. Then the share of the electorate we are talking about of course more than doubles.

But - if we look at this larger group of the devout, their total share in the electorate did not actually increase since 2000, at all. After all, as we have seen above, while those who attend religious service more than once a week represented a 2% larger share of the electorate, those who attend service just once a week represented a 2% smaller share. Together, we are talking about 42% of the electorate in 2000 - and also 42% of the electorate in 2004.

What is more, neither of these groups showed any notable change in political inclination. We already saw that Bush increased his support among the most devout by just 1%. Well, among those who attend service once a week, he also increased it by just 1% - from 57% to 58%.

Taking these two groups together, those who attend religious service once a week or more often this time voted Bush 61% to 39%. In 2000, they voted Bush 59% to 41%. Compare this 2% increase in the Bush vote with the 5% increase among women, the 7% increase among seniors, the 9% increase among Latinos or the 9% and 13% increase among dwellers of small and large cities, respectively, to get it in the right proportions.

Basically, the larger group of people who go to service once a week or more and voted Bush also increased barely. They went from making up (59% of 42% makes) 25% of the electorate to making up (61% of 42% makes) 26% - a net gain of, again, just 1%.

-----------
In short: McGentrix is considerably more right than BBB was. If with the "religious right" we mean those who attend religious service at least once a week and vote for Bush then McG is right: their numbers remained pretty much the same in 2000 and in 2004. In 2000, they made up 25% of all voters; in 2004, 26%. Same goes for the smaller group of those who attend religious service more often still and vote Republican, as we have seen: their share also grew by just one percent, from 9% to 10% of all voters. In absolutes, their numbers will have increased - but by hardly any more than the number of other (less religious) voters did. Turnout increased among both groups in similar fashion.

Does that mean the "religious right" didn't yield Bush the elections? Well, since Bush won by just a 3% margin, any group of over 3% of the electorate can of course be said to have yielded Bush the elections. But whatever role the religious right played in terms of numbers in 2004, it was no different, and no larger a role than it was in 2000.

So if you want to take a look at how devoutly religious Republicans have been making up a quarter of the national vote for at least two Presidential elections, go right ahead. But if you want to find out why Bush won the popular vote in 2004 when he failed to do so in 2000 - if you want to understand the difference between then and now - then by all means, don't look at the religious Republicans, because they made no different an impact than they did last time.

Instead, look at the voter groups that did actually vote for Bush in much greater numbers now than then - Latinos, women, big city dwellers and seniors being examples in question. They might not fit the Bush-voter stereotype as well, but they are the ones that made this year's result different from the 2000 one.
0 Replies
 
McGentrix
 
  1  
Thu 18 Nov, 2004 04:55 pm
I was going to suggest asking Nimh about those numbers... Mr. Green
0 Replies
 
 

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