What happens when candidates called by God drop out?
Kelly Oxford's tweet from Wednesday.
January 5th, 2012
11:59 AM ET

What happens when candidates called by God drop out?

By Stephen Walsh, CNN

On Wednesday, blogger and sitcom writer Kelly Oxford sent a tweet about the Republican race for the presidency that got a lot of folks asking: Is this God’s idea of a joke?

Oxford, whose Twitter feed was named by TIME magazine one of the 140 best of 2011, wrote, “Cain, Perry, Bachmann all claimed God told them to run for President, and all are out of the race. God is hilarious.”

It’s been reported that Herman Cain, Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann and Rick Santorum have all suggested that God called on them to enter the presidential race.

But here we are: Cain’s out. Bachmann’s out.

After returning to Texas to “reassess” his campaign, Perry announced he’s not throwing in the towel. Judging by his poor showing in the Iowa caucuses and the debates so far, however, many political experts think it’s just a matter of time.

The only one with supposed divine guidance who’s still in the race is Santorum.

So what gives? Did the candidates misread God’s supposed message? Does the defeat of a divinely-inspired candidate necessarily contradict a message from God?

We want to hear form you. What do you think?

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Uncategorized

soundoff (1,906 Responses)
  1. Dargo

    Maybe the gods ask inept people to run so that the candidate they really want in office has an easier chance in getting elected.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  2. Harpe

    I honestly believe that God did call all three of them. I think none of the heard the phone ringing, so he left a message in their voice mail. The message was "Don't run for President, you're entirely too dumb. You can't win and you're just wasting everyone's time." Unfortunately, when each of them saw the name GOD on their caller ID, none of them bothered to play the actual message.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  3. jack telaak

    What do I think? Scripture teaches us this is not God's world. It is still in the hands of His enemy. Not until His Son returns will it become the kingdom/reign of God on earth. The word "church" comes from the Greek "ek-klesia" which means a "called out" assembly. In the present time God's people are to come apart from the present world (certainly not to politic in it) in order to be made ready by Him (His work in this time) for the world to follow which will begin the moment His Son returns. These that claim the God of Scripture listen to their religious leaders instead of examining the Scriptures for their selves to learn what God really requires of them. In doing so they make fools of their selves and foolishly misrepresent the One they claim to follow.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
    • jd

      The country was founded with the ideal in mind of "Separation of church and state" and we still allow those to trounce upon that ideal.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:13 pm |
  4. Reverend

    Jesus loves me, but he can't stand you...

    January 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  5. Geezer

    I think god was bored and wants to screw with his most devout followers.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:04 pm |
  6. david

    Gott Mit Uns – translated: God With Us – Just ask the Nazis.. It was written right on the belt buckles of their uniforms.
    People use religiion and god to justify their power and control over others. These people are all liars who would do anything for a vote. Pander to the religious fundies, sure, as long as they vote for me and send a check to my PAC. They don't live by their so called beliefs.
    In the end we only remember the hits (god was on our side) and not the misses. It's an old trick and it still works. Any Magician could tell you the same.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
  7. Rick

    CNN's daily futile attack on Christianity.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • Cyle

      it's not futile. But if it makes you feel better, consider it an attack on all fairy stories about omnipotent imaginary friends.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
    • Mr. Manny

      This is not an attack on Christianity. its an attack on false people who claim to be christian but are actually egotistic idiots.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • Pixel

      Fundamentalist Christians are our Taliban. Religious extremists should be kept as far from positions of power as possible. All religious extremists are throbbing with hate for anyone different from them, and want to plow their religions down the throats of others. The most educated and most intelligent seldom believe in god, the most dim-witted always do. There is an obvious conclusion, but of course the dim-witted can't ever see an obvious conclusion.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:36 pm |
    • Morbiddreams775

      So, CNN is attacking Christianity by reporting that people that claim to have been told by God to do something... have given up on the something? Honestly, it's a subject that many people (myself included) get a good chuckle out of.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:58 pm |
    • HotAirAce

      If believers kept their delusions to themselves the media wouldn't have anything ridiculous to report.

      January 5, 2012 at 6:02 pm |
  8. Mr. Manny

    I think that these fools have confused their egos for God.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • HolyChrist

      Spot on. I don't think God would approve of Perry's spending spree in Texas. $400k a month of tax payer money just for his security. The only candidate using tax payer money for personal security (not counting Obama, but he's the pres after all). Perry has to go. God's blessing or not.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:09 pm |
    • Pixel

      "I think that these fools have confused their egos for God."
      So true. If there was a God, fools like this would never find supporters to get them anywhere near to the most powerful position in the world. George W Bush having taking the Presidency is proof that God is not out there. He only exists in the imaginations of people with big egos who need to justify their racist and bigoted views.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:18 pm |
  9. gfy63

    p.s. remember peoples we created gods (religions) not vice-versa.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Pixel

      and it should be noted that when people create God, they fashion him in their own image.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:21 pm |
  10. Robert Ray

    I hope santorum runs the same cours as tebow

    January 5, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
    • Morbiddreams775

      Do a google search for Santorum. Or do it on Wikipedia. Not for children or the weak of stomach.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:59 pm |
  11. The Stockman

    Maybe God was having a bad day?

    January 5, 2012 at 5:02 pm |
  12. Kalib

    As a Believer, I hope that Cain, Perry and Bachmann were sincere in stating that God "told" them to run for President, because 1. We are commanded to heed the direction God gives for our lives and 2. the punishment for speaking falsely for God is far worse than not winning your parties nomination. In truth, I don't care for the politics of any of them, but I respect any person who honors their faith. But the real misconception here is not whether or not God truly called them, the misconception is that if He did, then how could they not have been successful? In our minds, we think that everything that happens to us or everything that we do is only about us in that moment. The reality of God's Plan is that He uses who He will as He sees fit, in success and in apparent failure. When you only see one piece of an entire plan, it may not make sense, but none of us carry a timeless perspective. If you don't believe me, crack open the Old Testament and read about the Babylonians.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
    • The Lord

      Hello Kalib. This is god. I want you to go to Columbia and bring me back fifty kilos to pure, uncut cocaine. Also, the transmission on my 1998 VW Golf is failing, so you should probably look at getting that fixed for me. Also, I need to borrow your wife for a few hours. Don't ask. Just do it.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:06 pm |
  13. Harris

    As stated above "moronic posers" just trying to tap in to the larger "god-is-an-american" fallacy and grift those votes. They should really be ashamed of themselves for "dragging" God into this in the first place...whether or not he exists! And then there's Pat Robertson who, as usual, has the unmitigated gall to claim that God told him WHO he wanted for President but he can't tell us yet BUT it definitely AIN'T Obama. What a maroon!

    January 5, 2012 at 5:01 pm |
  14. keefah

    If God really is God, then His "ideas" encompass so much more than our minds can comprehend that it is impossible to really answer this question. God could have told Bachman to run so that He could teach JUST HER how to organize her life better. There are multiple reasons for things God wants done, and I'm not even sure that His wanting a particular president of the United States has anything to do with it! Everything God does is about so much more than what the focal point issue is that we would do well to get off our cynical horses and just be open to His involvement in our lives.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
    • Carlin123

      You are scary.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • keefah

      In other words, the more important question is, "What is God saying to YOU?"

      January 5, 2012 at 5:03 pm |
    • HolyChrist

      Your point is understood, but ridiculous.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:05 pm |
    • keefah

      Thank you Carlin. I'd don't mind being considered scary by people who believe that human rationality has the capacity to judge all of reality.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
    • The Lord

      Hello Keefah, this is god. The one, true god. Yeah. That guy. Anyways, this may fall outside the realms of your meager comprehension, but I'd like to ask something of you. Keefah, this isn't easy to say but here it goes...I want you to punch yourself in the face as hard as you can. I know this may sound senseless – even silly- but it's part of a greater plan. A plan that begins when you visit the dentist to see if he fix the tooth you broke from punching yourself.

      January 5, 2012 at 5:08 pm |
    • keefah

      Ah materialistic rationality. Patting himself on the back for being totally clued out. "Huh?"

      January 5, 2012 at 5:17 pm |
  15. Harold, Phoenix,AZ.

    God and love of country are on the front row at election time, once elected it is business as usual. Why do millions of us continue to buy the act? Tell me, I need to know.

    January 5, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  16. Kevin S

    Too bad freedom "OF" religion isn't freedom "FROM" religion

    January 5, 2012 at 5:00 pm |
  17. Sully

    ".... Wait. Did you think I meant President of the UNITED STATES? I was thinking more along the lines of your homeowners association or something. Have you SEEN those shrubs outside of the Thompson's house...?"

    January 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  18. streetdude66

    If Jesus Christ was crucified for telling Ceasar to feed the poor and heal the sick would these misfits aid Obama in that quest if God told to? Just sayin

    January 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
  19. Enlightened

    Actually, in examining the scriptures, you will find that Jesus advised his followers not to get involved with politics.

    January 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
    • Michael


      January 5, 2012 at 5:26 pm |
  20. jorgath

    Well, maybe God wanted them to run to showcase just how ridiculous people like them have gotten. Now, before anyone bashes, I'm not talking about Christians, or religious people in general, when I say "people like them." I'm specifically referring to people who are a) extremely conservative evangelical Christians and b) not very knowledgeable about foreign policy, economics, or what the president and the government have or have not done.

    January 5, 2012 at 4:59 pm |
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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.