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Split GOP presidential endorsements reflect fractured evangelical base
Rick Santorum was endorsed by the head of Iowa's Family Leader on Wednesday.
December 20th, 2011
04:25 PM ET

Split GOP presidential endorsements reflect fractured evangelical base

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN.com Religion Editor

(CNN) - When Newt Gingrich’s campaign announced Tuesday morning that it had won an endorsement from Don Wildmon, president of the evangelical American Family Association, it seemed like one more bit of evidence that the former House speaker has become the unlikely favorite of conservative Christian activists.

But a few hours later, Bob Vander Plaats, president of an influential Iowa evangelical organization called the Family Leader, announced he was throwing his personal support behind Rick Santorum.

The day of split Republican endorsements reflects a Republican religious base that is largely fractured just two weeks before the first-in-the-nation Republican caucuses.

The dynamic could portend trouble for the eventual Republican nominee, raising the prospect of a less than enthusiastic evangelical base in the general election, like Sen. John McCain faced in 2008. It could also mean a diluted evangelical role in choosing a nominee.

“There is certainly a difference among Christian and pro-family leaders in terms of who they will endorse,” says Mat Staver, who leads the Liberty Counsel, a faith-based law and advocacy group. “There hasn’t been any one candidate that a majority of Christian leaders have settled upon.”

“It looked for a while like Rick Perry would be that individual, but as the debates progressed, that’s seemed less likely,” says Staver, who is also dean of the Liberty University School of Law. “I think it’s cause for concern.”

A late November/early December CNN poll of likely Republican caucusgoers found that 31% of born-again Christians in Iowa supported Gingrich, while 19% backed Ron Paul, 12% backed Mitt Romney and 12% backed Perry.

The fractured Christian Right vote seems to echo the 2008 presidential race, when the movement’s leaders split their support among candidates, from McCain to Mike Huckabee to Rudy Giuliani, who won a surprise endorsement from televangelist Pat Robertson.

Since the presidency of George W. Bush, the GOP has struggled to find a national leader who could unite the evangelical and more establishment wings of the party.

Much of the recent evangelical enthusiasm for Gingrich, expressed by leaders like Jerry Falwell Jr. and Staver (Staver is not yet endorsing anyone) is partly a reflection of evangelical angst over Mitt Romney.

Many evangelicals are cool to the former Massachusetts governor because of his past social liberalism on issues like abortion. Some rank-and-file evangelicals also take issue with Romney’s Mormonism, though few evangelical leaders admit to such bias.

Last weekend, an influential California preacher named Jim Garlow e-mailed a 9,000-word letter that praised Gingrich to evangelical pastors across the country.

“A part of my motivation in writing stems from the fact that I have spent much time with him over the past two years,” wrote Garlow, who helped lead the campaign to ban same-sex marriage in California in 2008. “I am particularly concerned hearing people discuss some aspects regarding him about which they know very little.”

The Gingrich-centered letter included sections subtitled “personal issues,” “forgiveness” and “fit for the presidency.”

“I fully acknowledge his marital failures and sins and do not defend them in any way,” Garlow writes in the letter, which he says was sent to 28,000 pastors across the country. “I understand the steps of forgiveness and restoration and believe that Mr. Gingrich has walked, and continues to walk, in them.”

But other evangelical leaders have voiced skepticism of Gingrich, largely over his previous two marriages and his admission of carrying on an affair with his current wife in the late 1990s, when he was still married to his second wife.

Last month, Southern Baptist Convention public policy chief Richard Land wrote an open letter to the former House speaker calling on him to publicly address evangelical concerns.

“Evangelical men are willing to cut you some slack over your turbulent marital history,” Land wrote. “The bad news is that Evangelical women are far less willing to forgive and let bygones be bygones.”

Other evangelical leaders insist that Gingrich has already repented enough. “He’s a different Newt Gingrich than he was in the early 1990s,” says Staver.

Staver says Christian endorsements like the one for Santorum on Tuesday morning from Vander Plaats weaken the evangelical hand in shaping the Gingrich-Romney showdown.

“I like Rick Santorum, but everybody knows he’s not going to win the primary,” Staver says. “It’s an ideological endorsement that throws pragmatism out the window.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Mitt Romney • Newt Gingrich • Politics • Rick Santorum

soundoff (258 Responses)
  1. Holly

    Who are these evangelical leaders??? They would rather give their endorsement to Gingrich, a man who had an affair and left his wife, over a Mormon (Romney) or a Catholic (Santorum), who both follow the Christian faith with far more conviction. They have been faithful to their wives, reared successful children, and have been honest in their private and public lives.

    December 21, 2011 at 11:24 am |
  2. claybigsby

    "George

    I will only vote for a conservative Christian. It is not sad at all. We need to get our country back to God."

    This is exactly what is wrong with this country.

    December 21, 2011 at 11:22 am |
    • George

      Right. Our country has strayed too far from God. We need to get back on track.

      December 21, 2011 at 12:36 pm |
    • Curious

      George, what will your country look like when it's back on track?

      December 21, 2011 at 2:13 pm |
  3. Reality

    Only for the "newbies":

    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 Rick Perry, Mitt Romney, Jon Huntsman, Michele Bachmann, Newton Leroy Gingrich, Ron Paul or Rick Santorum, 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.

    2008 Presidential popular vote results:

    69,456,897 for pro-abortion/choice BO, 59,934,814 for "pro-life" JM.

    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.)

    December 21, 2011 at 11:06 am |
  4. Publius Novus

    Wow. "Mat Staver, who leads the Liberty Counsel, a faith-based law and advocacy group. 'There hasn’t been any one candidate that a majority of Christian leaders have settled upon.'” What a conceit. Mr. Staver, even if all of your evangelical "Christian leaders" agreed on one Republican candidate, that would be a long, long, long, way from "a majority of Christian leaders." Your so-called Christian leaders emphatically do not speak for the Roman Catholics or the Episcopalians, nor any of the mainstream, liberal Protestant churches such as the Lutherans, the United Church of Christ, the United Methodists, or the Presbyterians, or non-mainstream, conservative Quakers, Mennonites, Bretheren, or Anabaptists.

    December 21, 2011 at 10:28 am |
    • George

      That's because those other denominations you named are fake Christians. They gave up being Christian when they became liberal.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:46 am |
    • HellBent

      George – google 'no true scottsman fallacy' to see the absurdity of your argument (if it doesn't go completely over your head)

      December 21, 2011 at 10:47 am |
    • George

      @Hellbent

      I'm telling you again that I'm not talking about Scotsmen.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:51 am |
    • HellBent

      As suspected, WAY over your head...

      December 21, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • Chuckles

      @George

      Learning isn't your strong suit is it? The No True Scotsman fallacy is the name given to any argument where someone says "No True (insert group here) would do (insert action here)". When you say that someone is a fake christian you are committing this fallacy by who is and who isn't a true christian by your own standard which we all know is wrong and idiotic... at best.

      I'm sure this was tough for you, so make sure to read the above paragraph carefully.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:56 am |
    • George

      I can tell what is water and what is not water. In the same way, I can tell what is Christian and what is not Christian. Liberal churches are not Christian.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:01 am |
    • Round John

      Chuckles, I'd laugh with you if George's lack of understanding of your post wasn't so sad and depressing.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:03 am |
    • HellBent

      @George – yet another logic fail.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:03 am |
    • Chuckles

      @George

      That was just a terrible example and another fallacy. In any case let me just say that with approximately 10,000 different christian denominations, it stands to reason you are really really wrong, then again someone like you probably can't bear the thought of being wrong for a moment, which is why reason and facts probably get in your way a lot.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:04 am |
    • SeanNJ

      We really have to stop feeding the troll. George is one of the most advanced cases of Poe's Law I've ever seen.

      His posting style reminds me of another handle, although I'm having trouble recalling it. He'd always start his posts with something along the lines of "Well, I see all the atheists made it over to this blog blahblahblahadinfinitum..."

      December 21, 2011 at 11:06 am |
    • 2cents4free

      @ George, What? Like that long haired, sandal wearing hippie lib called Jesus?

      December 21, 2011 at 11:21 am |
  5. us1776

    Jesus would definitely not be supporting the greedy.

    .

    December 21, 2011 at 10:16 am |
    • George

      Well, he certainly would not be supporting liberals.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:52 am |
    • Chuckles

      @George

      Of course jesus would. He's the classic definition OF a liberal.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • DamianKnight

      @Chuckles,

      I think Jesus would be chastising both sides. I think he would be an independent.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:25 am |
  6. JimAR

    I have been very worried lately about whether my car mechanic is REALLY born again. And it turns out, some of my dentist's ancestors weren't even Christian! Life is just so much easier for those Moslems living in Islamic countries. They don't have to worry about the religion of their car mechanic and dentist like I do.

    December 21, 2011 at 9:48 am |
  7. mort

    It is really sad that so many people will vote for a Presidential candidate for religious reasons. Separation of church and state is VERY important in the running of our country. And it is precisely because so many christian people follow their religious leaders like sheep that the GOP candidates who are running for President throw religion into the mix. At least 4 of the GOP wanna be candidates stated that god told them to run for President. Obviously that can't be true so at least 3 of them are lying to the very people who will vote for them.

    December 21, 2011 at 9:08 am |
    • Publius Novus

      While I agree with much of your post, separation of church and state has nothing to do with private, personal, preferences for particular candidates for public office, based on religious affiliation.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:31 am |
    • George

      I will only vote for a conservative Christian. It is not sad at all. We need to get our country back to God.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:33 am |
    • HellBent

      @George – when was it ever with god in the first place? What time period would you like to go back to?

      December 21, 2011 at 10:38 am |
    • tallulah13

      George, the Const.itution opens with "We the people" for a reason. You can believe in god all you want. Our government, however, should belong to all the people, not just the christians. We should vote for the person who is best for the United States, not the one who is best for your church.

      If you do vote for someone because of their faith, don't just believe them when they say they are christians, but look at their actions. This lot that's running certainly don't behave as Christ told them to. But then, I don't think the evangelical church has much to do with god or Christ, but it sure has a lot to do with money and power.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:42 am |
    • George

      @tallulah13

      I vote for those who are 1. conservative and 2. Christian. Even if they turn out to be fake Christian, they will still be conservative. I can't go wrong.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:49 am |
    • Joe

      "At least 4 of the GOP wanna be candidates stated that god told them to run for President. Obviously that can't be true so at least 3 of them are lying to the very people who will vote for them."
      Maybe God just likes a good laugh, and She's sitting back with a glass of wine enjoying the clown parade.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:52 am |
    • HellBent

      The last christian conservative we had lied to start a war that ended up costing over 100,000 lives and drain our economy. How is it that you didn't go wrong there?

      December 21, 2011 at 10:53 am |
    • tallulah13

      So the truth for you, George, is you don't really care about the "christian" aspect of your candidate. In fact, your greatest concern is making sure that the poor in this country do not get any aid, and that the rich continue to get richer on the backs of the middle class, and that human rights are curbed. It sounds to me that you are just another fake christian, all sound and bluster, but when it comes to it, you really don't care about Jesus at all (except that you can use him to get into heaven).

      By the way, I'm neither liberal nor conservative. I believe in common sense and human rights. I'm still waiting for this country to get back to that.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:13 am |
    • SeanNJ

      @tallulah13: Me too, but I got tired of turning blue from holding my breath.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:17 am |
    • tallulah13

      I know, Sean. It's amazing how the country that sent a man to the moon now has a major political party whose Presidential candidate will likely be chosen by his relationship to a fictional character.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:29 am |
  8. Phange

    If those "religious leaders" were truly pro-family, they would not be supporting candidates like Newt Gingrich. The bottom line is they're all politics, not morals. Mitt Romney and John Huntsman are the two most consistent family men, but neither one will get the light of day to them. This is why I cannot stand "evangelicals". They don't think.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:53 am |
    • George

      I'm a conservative Christian, and I support Santorum. I would only vote for Gingrich if I had to in order to defeat Obama.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:35 am |
    • Publius Novus

      Really? I can see your suggestion that Gingrich is not much of a family man. But in what way are Romney and Hunstman more consistent family men than Santorum, Bachmann, Paul, Perry, and President Obama and VP Biden? This whole "family" thing is somewhat hypocritical. "Conservatives" voted in droves and herds for Ronald Reagan–hardly a paragon of family values, marriage fidelity, or fatherly virtues–over Jimmie Carter and Walter Mondale.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:38 am |
    • tallulah13

      George:

      Why do you hate Obama so much? I am not the biggest fan, but as far as I can tell, he has done what he can to serve the people of this nation. He has tried to take care of the poor by striving to give access to healthcare to everyone. He has attempted to get the is country back into financial solvency after the debacle of the Bush administration. Even his proposed tax rates on the wealthy are still lower than those rates during the Reagan administration. Everywhere, he has been stonewalled by the likes of Gingrich.

      He has tried to end two wars in a manner that wouldn't leave the natives of the countries we invaded (one justly, one unjustly) in a situation that will get them slaughtered. He is faithful to his family and has returned the US to a position of respect in the world.

      I'm curious why you would vote for an opportunist with the morals and family values of a tom cat just to get our current President out of office.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:53 am |
    • George

      @tallulah13

      Obama's liberal social policies are enough to make one vote against him. He supports abortion, ho.mo.s.e.xuals, and the teaching of evolution, and he opposes prayer in schools. – all counter to the Christian agenda. I suspect that he is a closet atheist.

      December 21, 2011 at 12:43 pm |
    • J.W

      I dont think he is anti-Christian. I think he is more pro-Const.itution and human rights.

      December 21, 2011 at 12:46 pm |
    • Colin

      For the first time I agree with George. I also believe Obama is a closet atheist. He's certainly smart enough and if you look at his relgious background, he only started attending church when it became necessary to keep potential voters happy. It is great having an atheist in the Wite House, even if has to feign a superst.ition to keep his voters happy.

      December 21, 2011 at 12:49 pm |
    • J.W

      Well if he gets re-elected this time then he should just go ahead and admit he is an atheist then. He wont have to worry about getting elected anymore then.

      December 21, 2011 at 12:53 pm |
    • fred

      George
      I have to dissagree with you only because Colin agrees with you. Obama loved that anti white and other hate speech of a Christian Pastor he called his mentor. Poor oppressed Obama, a black kid with a white mom and grandmother he was ashamed off. Check out his book these are not my words but his. Abandoned and unwanted by his own father would make hard to believe in the “heavenly father”

      December 21, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • LinCA

      @J.W

      You said, "Well if he gets re-elected this time then he should just go ahead and admit he is an atheist then. He wont have to worry about getting elected anymore then."
      While it would not matter for his own reelection chances, I'd be very surprised if he admits it while in office. It might hurt those that align with him and still want to get reelected. This kind of revelation would probably be more suited for his memoirs.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:02 pm |
    • J.W

      Yeah maybe so LinCa. I would think he may want to rub it in peoples face that they elected an atheist. Or perhaps if people elected an atheist once it would open the door for them to do it again. I don't know that going to church really helped him though. Fairly recent polls have shown that many people still don't know what religion he is or they think he is Muslim.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
    • fred

      J.W
      It is hard to say what religion anyone really is. Mammon does appear to be what most people worship regardless of the religion professed.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:13 pm |
    • LinCA

      J.W

      You said, "I would think he may want to rub it in peoples face that they elected an atheist."
      There are quite a few Democrats that are religious (I think you're one of them, or may lean in that direction). Some may feel betrayed if they found out. I would expect him to package it as a transformation while in office (whether true or not), and not one of deceit going in. No sense in offending the base.

      You said, "Or perhaps if people elected an atheist once it would open the door for them to do it again."
      Whether it would help will depend largely on if he is perceived as having been successful. If he can be shown to have been effective because or in spite of being an atheist, it might help. If he can be portrayed as having failed because of atheism, I'd rather he keep quiet. 🙂

      You said, "I don't know that going to church really helped him though. Fairly recent polls have shown that many people still don't know what religion he is or they think he is Muslim."
      Those that (still) think that he is Muslim are beyond hope anyway. They fit right in with the likes of George and the Birthers. Nothing the President does, or doesn't do, will sway them to accept him.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:21 pm |
    • Colin

      Anybody else find if weird and sadly ironic that the President of the United states has to hide the fact that he does NOT believe in mind reading, gods, ghosts, devils, levitation, living happily ever after, evil devils and the other supernatural nonsense that comprises Christianity?

      December 21, 2011 at 1:54 pm |
    • fred

      Colin
      That is why you should vote for Mitt. He does not need to hide the fact he wears magic underwear. Imagine an honest president that can take it in the short like a man.
      Contrast that with BIll Clinton who would carry the worlds largest known Bible to church. Not that he may see the truth but that voters may see what they are looking for.

      December 21, 2011 at 2:06 pm |
    • Tallulah13

      I forgot, George, that your particular brand of faith is based on discrimination and injustice. No wonder you hate a President who serves all citizens of the United States, not just the ones of which you approve. No wonder you would support an immoral opportunist. You are cut from the same cloth.

      December 22, 2011 at 3:20 am |
  9. Mike

    True Christians don't want war. There is no other non-war candidate other than Ron Paul.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:32 am |
    • Joe from CT, not Lieberman

      Mike, have you forgotten to take your medicine again?

      December 21, 2011 at 8:48 am |
    • D

      Hey Joe have you forgot to take yours?

      December 21, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • richunix

      @Mike,

      As a retired Soldier (two wars and three combat tours), No one wants WAR and lest of all soldiers. But as soldiers, we do our job and WANT TO GET THE *&^% out of there and home to our families. What the politician do is create the rhetoric that WE need WAR, but they are not the ones who have to endure the hardship of being in conflict. A little secret from the front. We fight for each other…Mom, apple pie the American Flag and the home front, you would be better off watching a good John Wayne War movie…

      December 21, 2011 at 9:27 am |
    • Publius Novus

      I have heard that "we fight for each other" canard before. If that is true, and you are not fighting for your country or your country's flag, the homefront or your homeland, then what are you? It sounds like you are a paid volunteer fighting for something in which you do not necessarily believe. That kind of a soldier is a mercenary, no different from a Blackwater contractor. Perhaps it is time to do away with the all-volunteer service.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:47 am |
    • tallulah13

      Publius Novus, I am curious as to the nature of your military service. I suspect it all comes from video games.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:04 am |
  10. Kramer

    People like "hesalive" need psychiatric help, not voting rights.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:30 am |
    • Kramer

      Just kidding about the voting rights part. Idiots get to vote too. That's what makes America great!

      December 21, 2011 at 8:33 am |
    • Primewonk

      Letting them vote is bad enough. But they also get to breed and raise kids.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:45 pm |
  11. Grinning Libber

    The "evangelical base" has always been a GOP myth. The GOP panders to them during elections – and then dumps them until next time. Fairly tale believers are not quick learners.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:20 am |
    • Joe from CT, not Lieberman

      The Evangelical Base has been part of the Republican Party strategy since the late 1970s, when Ronald Reagan USED them to get the Republican Nomination, and then win the Presidency in 1980. Since then, they were effectively used nationally in 2000 and 2004 (thanks to Karl Rove), but have not had the national impact they enjoyed previously. They have been effective in local elections, though, which have resulted in candidates being elected to the House, Senate and state legislatures that really do not reflect the will of their own local majorities.
      The thing that really amuses me is these Evangelicals appear to be the leaders of the "Anyone but Mitt or Huntsman" group. I don't know if it is their Progressivism (after all, one cannot accuse a Republican of having Liberal beliefs) or their Mormonism that gets to them more.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:54 am |
  12. hesalive

    Every knee will bow and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is lord.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:19 am |
    • Kramer

      You are clearly mentally challenged. Have a wonderful day.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:26 am |
    • griz5106

      I bend a knee to nothing or no one. I believe in myself and my family and will never worship anything or anyone.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:15 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      Every brain will atrophy and every tongue babble incoherently that Jesus is liar.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:46 am |
    • max

      Why? Why would someone bow? The representatives of Jesus do not represent anything that I would want to emulate. Bigotted, prideful,judgemental, etc.

      Is it supposed to be fear of hell? mainstream christianity's description of heaven sounds like hell. I think giving up liberty to avoid some supposed punishment is cowardly.

      Things like love your enemy, turn the other cheek, treat others as you want to be treated have all been ignored in favor of political power on earth. Christians are war mongers and gossips.

      Do any christians ever consider how bad they represent their supposed saviour? Certainly not the majority of them...

      December 21, 2011 at 9:56 am |
    • George

      @Max

      You need to get your heart right with God. Would you really prefer to burn in hell than to go to heaven which you said sounds like hell to you? The problem is that once you start to burn there is no end, no changing your mind.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:43 am |
    • Duh

      “The problem is that once you start to burn there is no end, no changing your mind.”

      Your religion uses fear to control people and make them do what they "should". Christians like you are some of the most fearful and consequently the most gullible people who are susceptible to being manipulated by fear. It’s really funny how you give more credit to the ability of satan. Your comments are a glaring contradiction of your own testimony of your god.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:54 am |
    • AtheistSteve

      "You need to get your heart right with God. Would you really prefer to burn in hell than to go to heaven which you said sounds like hell to you? The problem is that once you start to burn there is no end, no changing your mind."

      My heart pumps blood and I have no idea what you mean by the rest of that reply.
      What is this 'God' you speak of? Can you describe it to me? Or 'hell' and 'heaven' for that matter? Just what are you talking about? You're not making any sense...what do those words mean?

      December 21, 2011 at 11:03 am |
    • tallulah13

      @hesaliva

      Christians like to say that, but it's just circular reasoning from a book that has no more validity than the Iliad. There has never been any evidence for the existence of any of the thousands of gods humanity has created. In the unlikely event that a god does exist, there is very little reason to believe it would be the christian god.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:20 am |
  13. vp

    Are we back to this?

    How can y'all pretend to be for a "Culture of Life" when you are pro-war, pro-gun, pro-death penalty?

    December 21, 2011 at 8:07 am |
    • Joe from CT, not Lieberman

      It's easy. They are anti-choice, therefore they are by default "Culture of Life" supporters. Also, these same individuals who are opposed to abortion are also usually opposed to Head Start, tax breaks for folks with kids in Day Care, expanding the Public Education system and are in favor of dismantling Welfare, Unemployment Insurance, Workers Compensation and are opposed to Single-Payee health care, which would pretty much guarantee lower insurance rates by placing all 300 million + Americans in one giant risk pool.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:57 am |
    • Christian Patriotism is not an oxymoron... I'm a moron

      We see everything in black and white... though mostly white.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:13 am |
  14. Peter

    'Fractured evangelical base'. Wow...great headline. Based on people having differing opinions I suppose every human relationship is 'fractured'. Honestly, I would be more frightened of any group that cannot see things from differnet perspectives.

    December 21, 2011 at 8:03 am |
  15. J

    Vote for Rick Santorum!

    December 21, 2011 at 7:31 am |
    • Kramer

      Really? He's about as electable as Bachmann.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:46 am |
  16. Bernard Webb

    Why does every right-wing hate group have "family" in the name? Do they hate families?

    December 21, 2011 at 7:05 am |
    • Peter

      Well, could be the word 'hate' is so overused the word has become meaningless. The definition for 'hate' will, in the dictionary, have to be changed to 'when one has a different opinion than another'. Then again, our secies thinks the world changes simply by altering the meanings of symbols and if everyone does not go along with that they are 'hateful'. 🙂

      December 21, 2011 at 7:59 am |
    • hesalive

      Non-Christians misinterpret our love for Jesus as hate but Jesus demands obedience. He did not come to bring peace but a sword. He divides even family members. Why? We're in a high stakes war that demands absolute allegiance to King Jesus. Lose touch with Him, spend eternity in hell. What about you, Bernard? Where do you plan on spending eternity? King Jesus offers salvation every day to you. He grants forgiveness to anyone willing to ask for it.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:16 am |
    • HellBent

      the lord of @hesalive would make even Machiavelli cringe.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:45 am |
    • Joe from CT, not Lieberman

      @hellbent, the Lord of @hesalive may make Machiavelli cringe, but his interpretation is par for the course for many Evangelical churches. They attribute much to Jesus that he did not allow during his lifetime, such as an Earthly Kingdom which he always denied.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:00 am |
    • richunix

      As an Atheist, I do not misinterpret the love of your deity as hate, I’m amused that people still following fantasy.

      Stephen F Roberts: “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
      Atheism is not a religion nor is it a belief.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:09 am |
    • max

      i want to spend eternity with people that think likes hesalive....

      NOT

      December 21, 2011 at 9:59 am |
    • Primewonk

      Hesalive wrote, " We're in a high stakes war that demands absolute allegiance to King Jesus"

      Well, there's your problem right there Sparky.

      You think we're a theocracy. We're not. Neither your version of a god nor any version of the other 10,000 other gods we've invented, has legal standing in our laws.

      December 21, 2011 at 1:37 pm |
  17. Dave

    Evangelicals are the biggest sheep on this planet. Sheer them some more with your fake god.

    December 21, 2011 at 7:04 am |
    • Elliott Carlin

      Dims are the biggest sheep on this planet. Sheer them some more with your fake god.(obama)

      December 21, 2011 at 7:20 am |
    • Bernard Webb

      A lot of them can't think for themselves to the extent that they have to cut and paste someone else's words to express themselves in a forum like this! Pathetic.

      December 21, 2011 at 7:23 am |
    • hesalive

      His sheep hear his voice. I'm definitely on-board with being a sheep. At the end of the age, angels will sort the sheep from the goats. Don't miss your chance to be a sheep, my friend. The consequences are dire.

      December 21, 2011 at 8:18 am |
    • richunix

      @hesalive.

      You are basing your “proof” on a book that is now treated as fantasy (with some historical referenece). Nice…Did you see Mary on your refrigerator this morning?

      Stephen F Roberts: “I contend that we are both atheists. I just believe in one fewer god than you do. When you understand why you dismiss all the other possible gods, you will understand why I dismiss yours.”
      Atheism is not a religion nor is it a belief.

      December 21, 2011 at 9:14 am |
    • SeanNJ

      @richunix: Your Stephen Roberts quote is pithy, but untrue. Evangelicals don't reject other gods for the same reasons we do. We think ALL gods are silly. They think all other gods are silly, because they're not Jesus.

      I love the quote, but it's meaningless to a believer.

      December 21, 2011 at 10:59 am |
  18. Ando

    Dear Mr. President,

    If you want to win the next election, become a pro-lifer. The liberal wing of the country is going to vote for you anyway, and the conservatives will give you half of their votes. In the end, you win...

    Your truly,
    Pro Life voter

    December 21, 2011 at 6:45 am |
    • tallulah13

      No, Ando. The majority of US citizens support a woman's right to choose. You are a very vocal minority, but a minority nonetheless.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:26 am |
    • J.W

      Bush was pro-life, but he still cost many people their lives by starting wars.

      December 21, 2011 at 11:31 am |
  19. 4th Eagle of the Apocolypse

    And on the 7th day God said " Are these the knuckleheads I made as GOP nominees"? " Oh Jesus"

    December 21, 2011 at 6:43 am |
  20. Ben Thare

    After reading this fluff piece of an article I emailed God directly for his opinion.

    Unfortunately, the internet service provider that was hosting his site went out of business. 🙂

    December 21, 2011 at 5:48 am |
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About this blog

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.