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.
The one lesson that we must take from this election is that the GOP has got to get back to its conservative roots.
I'm sure the GOP is all ears, Eva. They're hanging on your every word.
And pigs will fly out of your azz, too.
Yes, the Republicans are just too damn liberal! We need to get back to our KKKonservative roots.
Actually, the GOP realizes this and it was a topic of discussion today.
Conservative roots? get back? What's wrong with this picture? Aren't we always moving forward? Why go backwards? I know of hair roots and tree roots and renerational roots but conservative roots? Boulderdash!
renerational should be generational, my bad
Vangie, you're very slow on the uptake, aren't you?
The king is dead, long live the king
And Florida STILL can't figure out who won there.
How could Florida be so consistently incompetent at dealing with an election? People had to wait up to seven hours to vote there!
Who runs their elections? Laurel and Hardy?
they can not digest hinduism, defeat.
Florida is an odd bit of comic relief in an otherwise mournful election.
I think late-night TV comedians are behind this, gives them material for a long time.
It takes several days to process all the ballots. Probably no states have completed counting all their ballots yet, but in most cases the outcome can be reliably predicted with only a partial count. When it's very close they need to process more ballots before reliably declaring the winner. I know this concept is probably way over your head, but that's just the way it is.
Too much sun on the brain and were never taught to count past twenty using fingers and toes (note the abundance of flip-flops). From the land of acquitting Casey Anthony, what did you expect?
Translation: Athy is an elections worler in Florida.
Or worker. Probably more fun to be an election worler, though.
Too much reality TV on Sandy's brain, for sure. Oh, wait. Does Sandy HAVE a brain?
Oh TOM TOM, you just don't know when to quit, everybody is tired of your vitriolic rant. Take that huge chip off your shoulder, you're getting lop-sided from the weight. And learn how to spell.
It must be gods will...lol
Perhaps the nation as a whole would benefit if the good citizens of New England went back to chuch in greater numbers...
A bird once freed will never come back. Let's hope so.
With young Americans rejecting organized religion in large numbers, the future of these Bronze Age mythologies is in doubt; therefore, thinking people in any part of this country are going to start attending church more often, isn't likely.
Perhaps, but I doubt it. I think more likely that the churches would benefit, and the country would suffer, because the United States is a secular nation and it appears that most citizens want it to stay that way.
A scattering is upon us in these trying days and Age. Leave your wantings behind and never take wind of one's longings for the weightiness of one's longings will smite even the most influential. Carry away nothing and leave. Head to the places inside one's being and do not keep ajar your door for many will want to enter in and cannot. Your loving this Life is for the world to have and you should not heed the rumors from others as to just what is truly right. It is therefore best for mankind to simmer in their juvenile pottages never rationalizingly 'assaying' one's diffuse detriments, the very smallest of life's grains. As smitten breeds, our splendors reveal one's characters to be traitorous to one's analogous fold. Where then does Life end and living begin?
What I spiritually believe in is that the Families of God including God Himself lives upon the very first created Cosmos which is the inner Cosmos. Our being but upon this celestial cosmos is due our being cast out of the Inner Cosmos for many reasons. Some were cast out of this Inner Cosmos for faultering and some for continuing to do the Lord's Will here upon this celestial realm of gigantic life forms whereupon their insides are living many families of God's members. We live upon this realm doing what we want while many of us unify ourselves in the communal. My way is not your way and yet when we cross paths we receive each other and walk on.Therefore, walk placidly amid the noise and waste ever being mindful of the peace one finds in finding peace there about.
Let Us Love
Oh, would you just dry up?
Sorry bout that Tom. I thought you were heading for the last roundup. My bad :-(
The USA is doomed. Cant understand how president Hussein won.
Because hinduism, lies of hindu lair Romany.
Fate is an elusive critter ain't it?
Get used to it, loser.
Does that mean "I win!"? What were we playing?
If you're referring to my comment, it was for the original poster (..).
Anyone everread "Games people play"? Good read! Read it back when I was Army in early 70's
@..says,just look at the moron you republicans picked,he's in the Bushs mold which should have been destroyed after he was hatched!!And look at the racists that posts on these sites,you as one nitwit!!
Your disrespect for the office of the President definitely confirms you're not a Christian or a good American.
They said Democrats were doomed in 2004, and that Republicans could not recover in 1996. The winning side always claims that it is "inevitable" and that the losing side is "doomed."
Six of one and a half-dozen the other but a baker's dozen I will always take! :-)
True, but the GOP are swimming against the tide. Hispanics are a growing force and are mainly democratic, blacks tend to be democratic, the young lean that way, women lean that way. If they don't change they'll only have old white people.
Ah, but sometimes political ideals ARE doomed, even though the party names rumble on and on.
Like neo-conservatism. Dixiecrats. Goldwater Republicans. The New Left. Reaganomics. Segregationists.
The Tea Party is well on their way to joining the SDS as a has-been radical fringe that only alienated their intended constituency. The Religious Right will go through a slower fade-out, but all the demographics are against them ever having the power they once had.
Did you know that in 1932, 2.5% of the voters, over a million people, chose a candidate from a party with the word "socialist" or "communist" in it? That faded away too.
But the US is well on the way to becoming just like Greece, France and Spain with heavy borrowing in an attempt to sustain an unsustainable ideology. The US government can only manipulate the CPI and inflation indicators for so long before reality barges in like the preverbial 800lb gorilla. Save your money, it's going to be a bumpy ride.
@Aristocles,the proud racist party of only white male republicans are over and as democrates they'll have to evolve or go extinct simple as that because the white man is now the minority in America.I as one but I'm different than you'll because I've adapted or learned to go with the flow as they say,republicans don't because of their racist upbringing as you saw it this election cycle how the majority of whites only left in the Midwest favored Romney and the surrounding cities that are minority laden favored Pres.Obama,that's demographics ,plain and simple !!
Values voters is one way to call it OR you could just call it bigotry.
TOM TOM: Just by your level of response you show your lack of education and trailer-park thinking. Just so you know, I am also over fifty, straight, married with two children, (no abortion, either). But when you give yourself the name "Tom Tom The Piper's SON", it leads to certain conclusions.
You have been spewing your venom at all and sundry all day long. Give it a rest, go get your last beer for the day and go watch Real Housewives.
Bite me, Sandy.
As for "Real Housewives", honey, I prefer Masterpiece Theater. Why, are you on RH?
Your assumptions about education level are telling, dearie. I have two Master's degrees.
And again, bite me.
I think Tom, Tom just got here not that long ago. I've been on here all day and didn't see her.
Absolutely correct, mama k. Apparently Sandy can't tell time very well. I didn't even get home from work until after 6:45, and have probably only posted at most 15 times since then...
Sandy ain't too bright.
mama k, you'll have to take over from here; it's time for me to hit the sack. Up again tomorrow at 6:15 and not home again until 7. I'll bet Sandy doesn't put in that much time at the diner, waiting tables.
OK, Tom get some rest. Virginia came through well last night. We kept an important senate seat. I think my post this morning talked about the eight Virginia-born presidents and their wives most likely approved of the election results (well except for that dingbat Michele Bachmann). lol
Pray if you wish, just stay in your house. Just like smokers.
What's to become of the Christian Right? We understand what's happening as God has made it clear in His word.
2Timothy 4:3-4, 3. For the time will come when men will not put up with sound doctrine. Instead, to suit their own desires, they will gather around them a great number of teachers to say what their itching ears want to hear.
4. They will turn their ears away from the truth and turn aside to myths.
The Christian Right is prepared for what's happening. Will you?
America was great once. Now we must pray for our republic. Satan is in control of this world, and that was demonstrated quite clearly yesterday. I'm becoming more and more in favor of churches renouncing their tax-exempt status and becoming grass-roots political units. We have to hurl a stake through the serpent's heart.
Get with the program Evangelical! There will be time for story telling on Sunday. Besides, John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world" means Satan has no place here either! Quit trying to parrot what you hear whenever your peers are around you stammering their shoddiness just to listen to you sing what they say.
Prayer didn't do much good in the lead-up to this election. Just shows how futile it is to pray to imaginary beings.
You don't get it do you Evangelical..That's why you lost..Because of religious rantings..This isn't about God or Satan...They could care less about our politics..This is and should be about fiscal issues.
Why don't you go spew that C R A P to the Taliban, you bigot.
"America was great once"
So was Greece and Rome as well.....hell even Britain was until WW1 and 2.
USA will follow...just a matter of time.
I do wish you and the media in general would stop using the term "evangelicals" when you really mean "white middle class evangelicals." Most black churches in America espouse evangelical theology, as do Korean and Taiwanese Presbyterian Churches, Hispanic Bible churches, and Pentecostal churches of all races and ethnicities. There are even substantial numbers of Episcopalians, Lutherans, and others from "mainstream" churches whose theology is evangelical. I think a fair analysis would probably show that Evangelicals, like most other Americans, vote according to their race, class, gender, and age. And if you were to broaden your definition of "evangelical" to include everyone who believes the Gospel, you would find a great many people who did not vote for Romney because he's a Mormon.
Mixed up are we? Or are we mix & match the numbers? Or is there one black headed evangelist among us evangelicals? No? Well then, let's get one on the bandwagon!
"I do wish you and the media in general would stop using the term "evangelicals"
How about we just settle on "Morons"....given that it is only one less letter that Romney's crackpot faith.
"Why not just call them morons?"
Well, one reason would be to avoid being as intolerant as they are. Another reason would be to honor the legacy of the 19th century evangelicals who campaigned to abolish slavery, provide free public education, and obtain rights for women, not to mention the legacy of people like my evangelical missionary parents, who spent their entire lives helping very poor people. Yes, they held a great many beliefs that I consider irrational, but morons they certainly were not.
"Does a firm persuasion that a thing is so, make it so? All poets believe that it does." (Wm Blake)
Thank goodness for the separation of church and state. Likely none of us would be here without it.
I tend to favor James Madison (POTUS #4, chief architect of the U.S. Constitution) to illustrate the degree to which our key founders pursued the establishment of a secular government based on freedom. Other typically quote Thomas Jefferson (POTUS #3). They seem to be our fiercest promoters of the separation of church and state. But what about our second president, John Adams? This quote might shed some light on his view of the issue:
The United States of America have exhibited, perhaps, the first example of governments erected on the simple principles of nature; and if men are now sufficiently enlightened to disabuse themselves of artifice, imposture, hypocrisy, and superstition, they will consider this event as an era in their history. Although the detail of the formation of the American governments is at present little known or regarded either in Europe or in America, it may hereafter become an object of curiosity. It will never be pretended that any persons employed in that service had interviews with the gods, or were in any degree under the influence of Heaven, more than those at work upon ships or houses, or laboring in merchandise or agriculture; it will forever be acknowledged that these governments were contrived merely by the use of reason and the senses.
Thirteen governments [of the original states] thus founded on the natural authority of the people alone, without a pretence of miracle or mystery, and which are destined to spread over the northern part of that whole quarter of the globe, are a great point gained in favor of the rights of mankind.
(A Defence of the Constitutions of Government of the United States of America [1787-1788])
mama k and Reality sure seem like the same person.
God, constant is not a mystery, as you hind, speculate from hindism, ignorance, but fact of life, truth absolute, nothing can exist without, and foundation of American Consti tution. Are you daring to call founding fathers of USA, hindu's, ignorant s. hindu, traitor, get some education. visit limitisthetruth.com to learn some truth about your hinduism, ignorance.
Only to idiots.
Prove your hinduism, absurdity.
Well I do have some long posts, but I think you'll find that there's a clear difference in both message and style between me the the "Reality" poster.
Blah must be tone-deaf, mama k. There is about as much resemblance between your posts and Reality's as there is between a monkey and a pencil.
I stand corrected....sit....slouch...slump...I slump corrected, then.
Yes the christian movement is over, until there is a major terrorists attack, or anything else that makes people understand, we need to lean on God. Our nation was founded and blesssed because of our Judeo-christian founding values reflected in the declaration of Independence. We turned away from that, not yesterday, but in the late 50's. When everyone became offended anytime anyone mentions God. But the end of this Story has already been written, and so much of what the greatest story ever told was going to happen already has happened. Spoiler Alert, the Christians win!.
Are you a Poe, stupid, or just hoping that no one is going to really break down how wrong your Ad Nauseum arguments are?
One need ever remember this, John 18:36 Jesus answered, "My kingdom is not of this world"
You back before 1950? When there coloreds were segregated? That morality? Or earlier, when the Indians were slaughtered as we stole their land . . . that morality? Or when slavery was in full swing . . . that morality? Or when it was perfectly legal to shoot Chinese just for the fun of it . . . that morality? Or when there was three lynchings a week in America . . . that morality? When beating your children and wife were not only acceptable, but actually expected . . . that morality?
Ah yes, the good old days!
No, USA was founded on rock of truth absolute GOD, not as you hind, lie about hinduism, fabrication of hindu Judaism, filthy secularism, and hinduism, racism of hindu Mithra ism, Christianity. Get some education about foundation of America, hindu, denier of truth absolute GOD Christian gentile, slave.
You are a liar. This country was founded on secular principles, not Judeo-christian nonsense. You fundies keep spreading that lie as if repeating it often enough will make it true.
The 'main' problem with the RNC is its knowing that many of its members are below par intellectuals and nowadays said below par intellectuals are gaining an understanding regarding many issues. They may not yet be on par with intellectually high sided political vocalists yet give them a chance to understand their predicaments and they just may bring down the house of cards that many politicians read from.Bot parties have card weilding politicians knowing what to say by their card readings. Sad, so sad they cannot do anything but read what others did write for them.
Sorry wrote Bot,,, should be Both,,,
Need I also mention parrot politicians who recite want they want to say via repeating their words before hand?
I feel that the Christian values are losing ground in the elections. I live in prime bible belt territory and can say with reasonable certainity that while MANY still attend church, few actually follow the teachings. I think quite a few go to church out of habit from their upbringing but the values are no longer penetrating into and sticking with the people. The political parties need to adapt to changing times and values and, so far, the GOP has failed in this area.
More people may be realizing that the "values" from many churches aren't good moral values from an independent standpoint. And perhaps more are starting to realize that legislating your religion doesn't make for a free society, it makes for a theocracy.
"and can say with reasonable certainity that while MANY still attend church, few actually follow the teachings"
It is difficult to amass a following when your teachings include unbelievable dogma such as the world being 6000 years old.
That's exactly how it should be, Gregg. The United States is a secular nation, and should be influenced by Consti.tutional values. This country is a nation of many beliefs (even no belief) so it would be unfair and I daresay un-American for "christian" values to be enforced by law. Obey whatever god you please, but this nation belongs to ALL it's citizens.
The American people do not want a theocracy. The GOP will not win if it is the Zealot Catholic Christian party.
The countries that allow church to run state tend to be our enimies, Iran, Afghanistan etc.
To the RNC,
Please think seriously about splitting into 2 parties; one party for the its-all-about-the-social-issues, religious conservatives & one for the fiscallyconservative/small government crowd. If the latter party positioned itself as moderately conservative on fiscal issues it would have potential to be very influential. If it indicated a willingness to compromise and work with the left, it could become quite formidable. Right now, there are lots of independents and moderate Democrats who would consider a RNC fiscal platform but are terrified of your stated social agenda. This election showed us people don't want government in their bedrooms and do want people is office who will do more than glare at each other across the aisle & vote "no". Give them that & you will find youself back in the game politically.
The phrase is ..."Try again in 4 years."
There is a party like that: the libertarian party!
The Libertarian Party does not have a reputation for being fiscally moderate, nor for working with other parties.
I find it a shame that the word "libertarian" got forever smeared by this party's use of it. It used to mean "a person who upholds the principles of individual liberty especially of thought and action," but now it is only just a minor variant of Republican for people who want to pretend they aren't Republicans.
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.