By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor
Washington (CNN) – For many conservative Christian leaders, it was a nightmare scenario: Barack Obama decisively re-elected. Same-sex marriage adopted by voters in some states. Rigorously anti-abortion candidates defeated in conservative red states.
On multiple levels, Tuesday’s election results raised questions about the Christian right’s agenda on American politics, eight years after the movement helped sweep President George W. Bush into a second term and opened the era of state bans on same-sex marriage.
“For the first time tonight, same-sex marriage has been passed by popular vote in Maine and Maryland,” said Robert P. Jones, a Washington-based pollster who specializes in questions about politics and religion.
“The historic nature of these results are hard to overstate,” Jones said. “Given the strong support of younger Americans for same-sex marriage, it is unlikely this issue will reappear as a major national wedge issue.”
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Some conservative evangelical leaders echoed that line. Albert Mohler, who heads the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, said on Twitter that votes for same-sex marriage suggested that “we are witnessing a fundamental moral realignment of the country.”
A Tuesday ballot measure to legalize same-sex marriage in Washington state is still pending. In Minnesota, voters rejected a Tuesday measure that would have banned same-sex marriage there.
Thirty-eight states have banned same-sex marriage, mostly via constitutional amendments.
Obama’s victory also raised questions about the Christian right's influence in the electorate.
Though evangelical leaders as diverse as the Southern Baptist Convention’s Richard Land and Christian icon Billy Graham voiced support for Mitt Romney (Graham stopped short of an official endorsement), Obama performed better among white evangelicals than he did in 2008 in some states.
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In swing state Ohio, exit polls showed that Obama got 30% support among white evangelicals. While that’s hardly a victory, it’s better than the 27% support Obama got among those voters four years ago.
Before the election, many evangelical leaders predicted that opposition to Obama over his support for abortion rights, his personal endorsement of same-sex marriage and his vision of government as a force for good would trump reservations evangelicals had about Romney’s past social liberalism and his Mormon faith.
“There is no evidence in voting patterns that President Obama's 'evolution' on same-sex marriage cost him anything,” Mohler said in another tweet Tuesday night.
Obama also narrowly won Catholics, even after the U.S. Catholic bishops waged a rigorous campaign against the Obama administration around the issue of religious liberty. The bishops alleged Obama was forcing Catholics to violate their own teachings by making health insurance companies provide free contraception coverage for virtually all employees.
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John Green, a religion and politics expert at the University of Akron, said Obama’s win among Catholics was partly a testament to the growing Latino demographic.
“Maybe Hispanic Catholics were not as moved by religious liberty-type arguments as by immigration and economics,” he said.
Unlike in 2004, when John Kerry – a former altar boy – lost Catholic voters, the Obama campaign had a robust religious outreach program aimed largely at Catholic and evangelical voters. The effort included videos from Obama and Vice President Joe Biden, a Catholic, talking about their Christian faith.
Obama's success among some religious demographics also illustrated how economic issues, as opposed to culture war concerns, dominated the election cycle.
The defeat Tuesday of two Republican Senate candidates who made national headlines with anti-abortion remarks also raised questions about the Christian right’s power.
In Missouri, U.S. Senate candidate Todd Akin, who in August walked back his remark that "if it's a legitimate rape, the female body has ways to try to shut that whole thing down," lost his bid to unseat Sen. Claire McCaskill, a Democrat.
Akin’s campaign became a national cause for conservative Christian activists after the Republican Party abandoned the candidate and encouraged him to drop out over his abortion remark.
In Indiana, Republican Senate candidate Richard Mourdock lost his race against Democrat Joe Donnelly after saying last month that pregnancies resulting from rape are “something that God intended to happen.”
Conservative Christians did claim some victories Tuesday night, including helping the GOP retain control of the U.S. House of Representatives and helping elect tea party favorite Ted Cruz as a U.S. senator from Texas.
Ralph Reed, the leader of conservative group the Faith & Freedom Coalition, planned a Wednesday morning press conference to release his data about what he called the enduring influence of “values voters.”
“Preliminary evidence is they turned out and they voted heavily for Romney,” Reed said in an e-mail message Tuesday night.
Realize of course, most of the ‘should burn in hell’ comments are posted for effect. In other words, not a Christian posting it, more like someone trying to stir up the remarks in the comments section...
I can't imagine that wording coming from other than preacher
Perhaps the message they should take away is that Obama's reelection is “something that God intended to happen.” Otherwise, they would have to conclude that either God is not omnipotent and couldn't prevent Obama's reelection, or that God just wasn't interested enough to be involved; If the latter, then their prayers, support of Romney by various pastors (including the recent set of sermons where pastors told their flocks to vote for Romney), etc. were irrelevant.
Their god doesn't exist.
I think Obama is highly mistaken and generally confused, but I think he's perfect for the left, and I believe this was meant to happen.
I also conclude that God allows bad things to happen. Case and point, Job.
Sarah Palin seems to be losing her looks.
tony... she seemed attractive in 2008. But not any more. That's from spewing hate for the last 4 years.
Reduce our tax burden. Drop the religious organizations' exemption!
yes glad I was not the only one to think so Kinid of funny she still has trouble talking facts..
Your relationship with Jesus is what is important. How do you think it makes him feel seeing your hearts so hardened and your words your speaking of how he is not real, he loves each one of us, I am sure he is sad he knows our hearts, and really you should re think about what you have said about him and think you have a choice heaven or hell.
Which Jesus of the thousands of different ones worshiped in the US would that be?
So that means Jeebus pitches and you catch?
Considering he is dead, I don't think Jesus much cares what I do.
Huebert, I would like to marry you.
It's the beginning of the end for the religious right. Once the current older generation passes away (boomers) the religious right will have much less influence.
Besides being outdated and ignorant, they are sucking up our taxes.
Ironic, isn't it?
So what do you folks believe the odds are that a Christian Extremists tries to cap the Kenyan?
Been a long time since political murder shook this country up, and frankly we are ripe.
We are already so polarized, and the whole fiscal cliff is going to ramp up the propoganda even further.
The Secret Service better be spot on, because the gun nuts are furious!
My guess is a right-wing coup attempt. Extremist Christianity has been weaseling itself into the military, and in general, there are a lot of NRA TeaJesus crazies who would grab their guns and support a grab by parts of the military.
It would fail, of course. But they might try. There are a lot of people who are infuriated today.
Did you know there is a heavy penalty for making veiled threats against
the Pesident's life?
Did you know that those were not even close to threats, but observations of what other people might do?
Do you even know what a threat is?
william, I think the chances of Obama making it through his term is slim. I am not worried about Christian extremist but these right wing radical Tea Party fools is a real possiblity
It would be nice to see Christianity become more accepting and tolerant, divorced from right wing politics; the people who took it there perverted it. I do think the days of the Christian right's influence are clearly numbered and in many places in America gone. Particularly with younger people.
There is no Christian left. They are called Hippies.
Refusing an abortion to a young woman who life is endangered is at least the murder of the living, breathing mother, and removes the opportunity and blessing of life from the possibly several children she would have had later.
I still can't understand why Evangelical Christians were supporting a cult member who believes that the Christian bible is full of errors and that the book of Mormon contains the corrections.
Remember how horrible the other choices were?
If I was a christian conservative I would take a bath with my electric toaster.
All who make a negative comment about God, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit better be thankful that he is more merciful than they are!
Oh, how magnanimous of them/him! It makes me so glad to know that I'll only be tortured for eternity by my sadistic creator
What were the 250,000 negative comments of the mostly women and childrenTsunami victims???
Tell your God if he comes back, we shall kill him again.
It would help if the Evangelical Right didn't twist Jesus' message so much away from the Gospels.
Argument is invalid.
You really think he's mericful? Watch this and if you can still agree with that statement, then please seek professional help.
seems all the violent ones are the nonbelievers these days bashing christians and their beliefs. you are no better than the christians criticizing your lack of. such hypocrits on this board...
Bashing bigotry does not make one a bigot
Calling your beliefs silly is not violence. Blowing up abortion clinics is violence. Do you see the difference?
Bigotry = opinion I dont agree with
no. bigotry = I'm an old mo0n who can't cope with change, so I'll take it out on the gays
How have you missed Atheist Hunter's posts?
@huebert–blowing up abortion clinic because of some persons demented "christian" beliefs or mass murders shooting innocent victims in a movie theater are both centered on the faults of mankind and not their religious beliefs. blaming christianinty for blowing up abortion clinics as as inane as blaming rap music for killing cops. the violence i am referring to does not only mean physical acts, but the general consensus on this board towards people with religious beliefs. just read the post. the nonbelievers tone/messages are so negative and intolerant. i guess that is what to be expected reading cnn.....
Yes, you are completely correct.
Christians are sooooo persecuted.
Atheists should be silenced and nailed to a cross.
@nathan–see you are the perfect example. who said anything about being persecuted/ nailing anyone to a cross? more violence from nonbelieveres. i was just making a comment on the trends to the messages here. most of the name calling, ridiculing, etc. are coming from the non christians.
The fact that the xiian right is seen as a traitorous mirror image of the Taliban is not helping them.
There is a difference between the common "hippie christian" and Bible believing Christians. Yes, Bible principles are declining, because schools have changed, moral standards are being redefined, and we are being innundated with perverts shaping our society. Everything eventaully tends toward chaos and ruin. We are just witnessing this transition in our history. I think it's fascinating and predicted.
LOL The desperation of the fundamentalist bible thumpers is quite entertaining.
No desperation, only inevitability. The prince of the power of the air is having his day in eternity. Have fun liberals.
Couldn't agree more, Fun.
Whenever someone says "civilization is in decline," you can be absolutely certain that they are pushing an extremist political agenda. Hitler and Lenin used to say the same thing.
Sorry, but in reality, it's a great era to be in the West. Generally prosperous, starvation and epidemics are rare, medical science is very good. Anyone saying otherwise is lying to get their agenda into power.
You believe in some mythical prince of power and prophecy and we liberals are the crazy ones? Riiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight.
Bible principles are declining because people are figuring out that it's a big book of fairy tales, just like all the other "gods" in human history.
It's always been like that Peter. Religion has always screamed and ranted about endtimes and moral decline. They get in power, and marginalization, human rights violations, and all manner of religiously based attrocities are commited, all in the name of theiir respective god. Thankfully America is pushing back against the standard, and religious influence is hopefully in decline for good.
Your tears are delicious.
Ok this is just funny. So many vicious liberals out there. I don't care in the least that our country is migrating to a less upstanding morality. I am enjoying the show. I completely think you should enjoy your time! Have fun doing whatever you want! Marry a pig or try to instigate genocide for children under 10 yrs old. Whatever feels good to you. We have been digressively moving to a completely destructive society with massive debt and no sense of responsibility. I am chuckling as I write this because I absolutely don't care about your choices. Eat,drink, and be merry because tomorrow you may die!
Oh so you're just wallowing in your perceived piousness. Or are you using your self-rightousness? Oh well does it really matter? You cloak yourself with some kind of delusion, and proceed to convince yourself that you're better than you really are. Have fun with your delusions.
People of the book, claiming to be follower of Moses, Easu, anointed one and Mohammad, spirit of truth,pbt, were commanded to live by way of truth absolute GOD, foundation of America, not hinduism, corruption of truth absolute, religions. So much so, word religion does not exist in Hebrew, Aramaic or Arabic language.
OPEN YOUR EYE'S TO TRUTH ABSOLUTE AND DROP WORD RELIGION AND hINDU PAGAN CUSTOMS FROM YOUR WAY TO BE SUCCESS FULL IN LIFE AND HEAR AFTER. visit limitisthetruth.com to learn handy work of hindu's, criminals to hind, fool humanity.
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hinduism, absurdity of a hindu, stupid.
Only for new members of this blog:-–>>>>
As noted many times before the election:
Why the Christian Right no longer matters in presidential elections:
Once again, all the conservative votes in the country "ain't" going to help a "pro-life" presidential candidate, i.e Mitt Romney, in 2012 as the "Immoral Majority" rules the country and will be doing so for awhile. The "Immoral Majority" you ask?
The fastest growing USA voting bloc: In 2008, the 70+ million "Roe vs. Wade mothers and fathers" of aborted womb-babies" whose ranks grow by two million per year i.e. 78+ million "IM" voters in 2012.
And the irony:
And all because many women fail to take the Pill once a day or men fail to use a condom even though in most cases these men have them in their pockets. (maybe they should be called the "Stupid Majority"?)
The failures of the widely used birth "control" methods i.e. the Pill and male condom have led to the large rate of abortions ( one million/yr) and S-TDs (19 million/yr) in the USA. Men and women must either recognize their responsibilities by using the Pill or condoms properly and/or use other safer birth control methods in order to reduce the epidemics of abortion and S-TDs.
i.e. IF THE PILL AND MALE CONDOMS WERE USED PROPERLY, ABORTION WOULD NOT BE AN ISSUE AND OBAMA WOULD NOT BE PRESIDENT.
And to appeal to the Immoral/Stupid Majority, Obama and Axelrod filled the airways with pro- Roe vs. Wade, pro-choice/abortion ads during the last two weeks of the campaign. Said ad expenditures should have been used to promulgate the Brutal Effects of Stupidity as noted previously.
You just don't get it. The whole point is that government should NOT be telling women what they can and cannot do with their bodies. YOU don't want to have an abortion? Fine. Don't do it. But you, nor anyone else has any right to tell another woman what she can do with her body.
There were many other issues besides abortion in this election that were very important to voters. Most polled said the economy was the number one issue.
Obviously some new members like Joe missed this:
The reality of se-x, abortion, contraception and STD/HIV control: – from a guy who enjoys intelligent se-x-
Note: Some words hyphenated to defeat an obvious word filter. ...
The Brutal Effects of Stupidity:
: The failures of the widely used birth "control" methods i.e. the Pill (8.7% actual failure rate) and male con-dom (17.4% actual failure rate) have led to the large rate of abortions and S-TDs in the USA. Men and women must either recognize their responsibilities by using the Pill or co-ndoms properly and/or use safer methods in order to reduce the epidemics of abortion and S-TDs.- Failure rate statistics provided by the Gut-tmacher Inst-itute. Unfortunately they do not give the statistics for doubling up i.e. using a combination of the Pill and a condom.
Added information before making your next move:
from the CDC-2006
"Se-xually transmitted diseases (STDs) remain a major public health challenge in the United States. While substantial progress has been made in preventing, diagnosing, and treating certain S-TDs in recent years, CDC estimates that approximately 19 million new infections occur each year, almost half of them among young people ages 15 to 24.1 In addition to the physical and psy-ch-ological consequences of S-TDs, these diseases also exact a tremendous economic toll. Direct medical costs as-sociated with STDs in the United States are estimated at up to $14.7 billion annually in 2006 dollars."
Consumer Reports, January, 2012
"Yes, or-al se-x is se-x, and it can boost cancer risk-
Here's a crucial message for teens (and all se-xually active "post-teeners": Or-al se-x carries many of the same risks as va-ginal se-x, including human papilloma virus, or HPV. And HPV may now be overtaking tobacco as the leading cause of or-al cancers in America in people under age 50.
"Adolescents don’t think or-al se-x is something to worry about," said Bonnie Halpern-Felsher professor of pediatrics at the University of California, San Francisco. "They view it as a way to have intimacy without having 's-ex.'" (It should be called the Bill Clinton Syndrome !!)
Obviously, political leaders in both parties, Planned Parenthood, parents, the "stupid part of the USA" and the educational system have failed miserably on many fronts.
The most effective forms of contraception, ranked by "Perfect use":
– (Abstinence, 0% failure rate)
– (Masturbation, mono or mutual, 0% failure rate)
One-month injectable and Implant (both at 0.05 percent)
Vasectomy and IUD (Mirena) (both at 0.1 percent)
The Pill, Three-month injectable, and the Patch (all at 0.3 percent)
Tubal sterilization (at 0.5 percent)
IUD (Copper-T) (0.6 percent)
Periodic abstinence (Post-ovulation) (1.0 percent)
Periodic abstinence (Symptothermal) and Male condom (both at 2.0 percent)
Periodic abstinence (Ovulation method) (3.0 percent)
Every other method ranks below these, including Withdrawal (4.0), Female condom (5.0), Diaphragm (6.0), Periodic abstinence (calendar) (9.0), the Sponge (9.0-20.0, depending on whether the woman using it has had a child in the past), Cervical cap (9.0-26.0, with the same caveat as the Sponge), and Spermicides (18.0).
Prayer changes things .
So I see you prayed for Obama to win. ;)
Yes, encouraging kids to follow blindly instead of thinking for themselves will do great things has done wonders for our country.
For every house of cards there are cardsharks playing around and sometimes relying on desparate measures to win a pot once in awhile. Your rather cunning dissention makes martyrs of wiliness in either basket.
I have fun ;)
Pen the slope of the magic pear and quantify the preamble to all righteous melancholia. Enable worsted slings of divine yeast!
:-( –)--> :-) <--(– :-(
Just don't make me go in a church!! :)
Congress should pass a law allowing a tax break only for up to two children. So many children are born out of wedlock and with no support. This forces them to run the streets with out guidance or supervision. Some of the single parents have to work so abortion should be free for any woman that already has two children if they desire one.
yup. they grow up to be free loading democrats.
Agreed on the tax break, but I'd extend it to giving out the $13,000+ per child per year free education only for the first two kids. If you have a third you pay for its education youself, or prove sterilization before you get the benefit. Its a harsh but necessary deterrent.
Abortion detracts from the social baskets of security for the elderly by an ever decreasing number of pay-into-the-pots therefore decreasing the soup.
And have the anti-abrotion crowd pay for the expenses of raising and college for all the kids they "save" through their closing of abortion clinics and refusal to supply contraceptives when required.
Here's a nice reality check for the GOP.
Meghan McCain tells them to evolve (or die).
Even the word she chose gives me a little schadenfreude.
Newt admits he was 'wrong' about Rmoney getting 53% and 300 electoral college votes.
The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.