Who Are the Religious Right "Kingmakers" in the GOP?
Frederick Clarkson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Apr 20, 2007 at 03:29:29 PM EST
Religion News Service has published a list of ten "religious conservatives" described as "kingmakers" in the GOP.  The article is interesting for at least two reasons: One is that it underscores the ongoing importance of the religious right in the Republican Party; and the other is that their list is at least as interesting for who is left out, as who is included. RNS can say that they merely "spotlighted" ten influential leaders without saying that these are necessarily the most influential, but there is also an implicit heirarchy when choices are made in this way.  For example, ten influential religious right leaders who are not on the list are Pat Robertson, John Hagee, Sun Myung Moon, Lou Sheldon,  Beverly LaHaye, Roy Moore, Frank Pavone, D. James Kennedy, Rick Scarborough, and Jerry Falwell.    

Check out the RNS list, and their reasoning, on the flip:

Broadcaster and psychologist James Dobson, whose Focus on the Family radio show attracts some 220 million listeners who tune in for his views on the merits - and failings - of various candidates.

· Michael Farris, founder and chairman of the Homeschool Legal Defense Association, who one observer said had "a network of home-schoolers that will do anything for him."

· Richard Land, the go-to political guru for the nation's 16 million Southern Baptists, who has been outspoken in declaring what is acceptable (Mormonism) and what is not (infidelity).

· Pam Olsen, president of the Florida Prayer Network, and a mother of four who set up a network of pastors and organizers in each of the state's 67 counties.

· Rod Parsley, pastor of the 14,000-member World Harvest Church in the battleground state of Ohio, who can use his network of pastors to help a candidate fine-tune his message to reach conservatives.

· Tony Perkins, president of the Family Research Council, the most powerful Christian lobbying group in Washington whose e-mail alerts reach 200,000 people each day.

· Steve Scheffler, head of the 4,000-member Iowa Christian Alliance, the most active - and credible - religious group in the Hawkeye State.

· Tamara Scott, Iowa leader of Concerned Women for America, who has talked with nearly every GOP candidate and is willing to back a candidate who's "truly conservative," even if he's a longshot.

· Jay Sekulow, chief counsel of the American Center for Law and Justice and national radio host, whose blessing on Mitt Romney's campaign was a huge stamp of approval for the Mormon candidate.

· Don Wildmon, chairman of the influential Arlington Group and head of the American Family Association, pontificates about politics and society on the 185 radio stations that his group owns across 36 states.




Display:
Fred, why not compile your own ?

And, isn't 10 a bit slim ? Why not 20 ?

by Bruce Wilson on Fri Apr 20, 2007 at 03:37:10 PM EST

I claim no special expertise on which religious right leaders can deliver the votes in key primary and caucus states, these days, which is what the RNS article seems to be using as their criteria.  

For now, I am content to just put this out for people to consider. I am not arguing with their list. Just making note of who they put in and who they didn't.

The religigious right is regrouping in the wake of the 06 elections; the dramatic decline of the Christian Coalition and the debacle of Ralph Reed in the Abramoff affair; as well as the aging of the founding generation of leaders. D James Kennedy has recently been in the hospital for example. I have not heard an update on his condition.

I think the RNS list is one indicator of the changes going on.

by Frederick Clarkson on Fri Apr 20, 2007 at 04:31:55 PM EST
Parent

John Hagee is busy building an organizational machine to effect electoral outcomes : he's said so openly.

by Bruce Wilson on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 05:06:12 AM EST
Parent



to show the importance of state groups. Maybe we should pay more attention to state leaders. I was more familiar with your list of who was left out than the actual list.

by Carlos on Fri Apr 20, 2007 at 04:59:33 PM EST
I don't know if GOP presidential candidates have been wooing Parsley, but they have been courting Hagee. There's clout and then there's perception of clout, but perception seems to be that Hagee's influential. So much so that McCain ate some crow to court Hagee, and Roy Blunt flew to Texas specifically to meet with the good pastor.

Dobson and Perkins dominated the FRC's "Voter Values Conference" last September pre-election pep rally ; there's no doubt they belong on the list.

But I wonder about the inclusion of Farris :  by that logic, why not put Pat Robertson on the list for his 150 Regent University graduates working in the Bush Administration ?  Farris may well deserve to be on the list, but he's far from the only leader on the Christian right who fields cadres of dedicated political operatives.

by Bruce Wilson on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 05:19:34 AM EST
Parent



<<whose Focus on the Family radio show attracts some 220 million listeners>>

I've long been skeptical at best of the fantastical numbers of "Evangelical Christians" and "subscribers" and "listeners" fathomed up, seems to me, by the Wingers.  Particularly by those with ridiculous "media" platforms.

Anybody can quote any number of subscribers, etc. if not audited by independent sources such as the BPA for trade publication/media or SDRS or even Nielsen in order to determine advertising rates.

I'm amazed that advertising support for the likes of James Dobson even exists.

by Marcus on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 12:10:49 AM EST

Without minimizing the work religious conservatives have done to build up dedicated media networks, what basis is there for such claims of vast listenership ? Are any organizations scrutinizing such claims to try and reach empirical estimates ?

by Bruce Wilson on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 05:10:19 AM EST
Parent


Fred,

I think the influence of Scarborough is being underestimated.  Scarborough is the angry face while Richard Land is the smiling face of Southern Baptist fundamentalism.

Scarborough is the most influential Dominionist organizer in Texas.  He's very popular and influential within the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention.  Baptists are a sizeable group in Texas and Texas exerts disproportional influence on national politics.

Moderate, Mainstream Baptists like myself may lead the larger Baptist General Convention of Texas, but Scarborough still has a lot of fans in our churches and Land still exerts considerable influence.  

Scarborough wins by default when it comes to political influence.  Moderate Baptists are not organizing pastors to get-out-the-vote in secular political elections.  Land and Scarborough win by our conscientious adherence to the Baptist tradition of separation of church and state.

by Mainstream Baptist on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 09:17:37 AM EST

Scarborough is building an on-the-ground electoral network, as well as being active in the SBC, and although apparently not big in early GOP caucus and primary states, which seems to be the emphasis of the RNS article, is likely to be formidable in other areas.

by Frederick Clarkson on Sat Apr 21, 2007 at 12:47:46 PM EST
Parent



WWW Talk To Action


Cognitive Dissonance & Dominionism Denial
There is new research on why people are averse to hearing or learning about the views of ideological opponents. Based on evaluation of five......
By Frederick Clarkson (330 comments)
Will the Air Force Do Anything To Rein In Its Dynamic Duo of Gay-Bashing, Misogynistic Bloggers?
"I always get nervous when I see female pastors/chaplains. Here is why everyone should as well: "First, women are not called to be pastors,......
By Chris Rodda (178 comments)
The Legacy of Big Oil
The media is ablaze with the upcoming publication of David Grann's book, Killers of the Flower Moon. The shocking non fiction account of the......
By wilkyjr (98 comments)
Gimme That Old Time Dominionism Denial
Over the years, I have written a great deal here and in other venues about the explicitly theocratic movement called dominionism -- which has......
By Frederick Clarkson (93 comments)
History Advisor to Members of Congress Completely Twists Jefferson's Words to Support Muslim Ban
Pseudo-historian David Barton, best known for his misquoting of our country's founders to promote the notion that America was founded as a Christian nation,......
By Chris Rodda (105 comments)
"Christian Fighter Pilot" Calls First Lesbian Air Force Academy Commandant a Liar
In a new post on his "Christian Fighter Pilot" blog titled "BGen Kristin Goodwin and the USAFA Honor Code," Air Force Lieutenant Colonel Jonathan......
By Chris Rodda (127 comments)
Catholic Right Leader Unapologetic about Call for 'Death to Liberal Professors' -- UPDATED
Today, Donald Trump appointed C-FAM Executive Vice President Lisa Correnti to the US Delegation To UN Commission On Status Of Women. (C-FAM is a......
By Frederick Clarkson (115 comments)
Controlling Information
     Yesterday I listened to Russ Limbaugh.  Rush advised listeners it would be best that they not listen to CNN,MSNBC, ABC, CBS and......
By wilkyjr (79 comments)
Is Bannon Fifth-Columning the Pope?
In December 2016 I wrote about how White House chief strategist Steve Bannon, who likes to flash his Catholic credentials when it comes to......
By Frank Cocozzelli (228 comments)
Ross Douthat's Hackery on the Seemingly Incongruous Alliance of Bannon & Burke
Conservative Catholic writer Ross Douthat has dissembled again. This time, in a February 15, 2017 New York Times op-ed titled The Trump Era's Catholic......
By Frank Cocozzelli (55 comments)
`So-Called Patriots' Attack The Rule Of Law
Every so often, right-wing commentator Pat Buchanan lurches out of the far-right fever swamp where he has resided for the past 50 years to......
By Rob Boston (153 comments)
Bad Faith from Focus on the Family
Here is one from the archives, Feb 12, 2011, that serves as a reminder of how deeply disingenuous people can be. Appeals to seek......
By Frederick Clarkson (173 comments)
The Legacy of George Wallace
"One need not accept any of those views to agree that they had appealed to real concerns of real people, not to mindless, unreasoning......
By wilkyjr (53 comments)
Betsy DeVos's Mudsill View of Public Education
My Talk to Action colleague Rachel Tabachnick has been doing yeoman's work in explaining Betsy DeVos's long-term strategy for decimating universal public education. If......
By Frank Cocozzelli (54 comments)
Prince and DeVos Families at Intersection of Radical Free Market Privatizers and Religious Right
This post from 2011 surfaces important information about President-Elect Trump's nominee for Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos. -- FC Erik Prince, Brother of Betsy......
By Rachel Tabachnick (210 comments)

Respect for Others? or Political Correctness?
The term "political correctness" as used by Conservatives and Republicans has often puzzled me: what exactly do they mean by it? After reading Chip Berlin's piece here-- http://www.talk2action.org/story/2016/7/21/04356/9417 I thought about what he explained......
MTOLincoln (240 comments)
Fear
What I'm feeling now is fear.  I swear that it seems my nightmares are coming true with this new "president".  I'm also frustrated because so many people are not connecting all the dots! I've......
ArchaeoBob (87 comments)
"America - love it or LEAVE!"
I've been hearing that and similar sentiments fairly frequently in the last few days - far FAR more often than ever before.  Hearing about "consequences for burning the flag (actions) from Trump is chilling!......
ArchaeoBob (171 comments)
"Faked!" Meme
Keep your eyes and ears open for a possible move to try to discredit the people openly opposing Trump and the bigots, especially people who have experienced terrorism from the "Right"  (Christian Terrorism is......
ArchaeoBob (143 comments)
More aggressive proselytizing
My wife told me today of an experience she had this last week, where she was proselytized by a McDonald's employee while in the store. ......
ArchaeoBob (141 comments)
See if you recognize names on this list
This comes from the local newspaper, which was conservative before and took a hard right turn after it was sold. Hint: Sarah Palin's name is on it!  (It's also connected to Trump.) ......
ArchaeoBob (146 comments)
Unions: A Labor Day Discussion
This is a revision of an article which I posted on my personal board and also on Dailykos. I had an interesting discussion on a discussion board concerning Unions. I tried to piece it......
Xulon (144 comments)
Extremely obnoxious protesters at WitchsFest NYC: connected to NAR?
In July of this year, some extremely loud, obnoxious Christian-identified protesters showed up at WitchsFest, an annual Pagan street fair here in NYC.  Here's an account of the protest by Pagan writer Heather Greene......
Diane Vera (123 comments)
Capitalism and the Attack on the Imago Dei
I joined this site today, having been linked here by Crooksandliars' Blog Roundup. I thought I'd put up something I put up previously on my Wordpress blog and also at the DailyKos. As will......
Xulon (185 comments)
History of attitudes towards poverty and the churches.
Jesus is said to have stated that "The Poor will always be with you" and some Christians have used that to refuse to try to help the poor, because "they will always be with......
ArchaeoBob (142 comments)
Alternate economy medical treatment
Dogemperor wrote several times about the alternate economy structure that dominionists have built.  Well, it's actually made the news.  Pretty good article, although it doesn't get into how bad people could be (have been)......
ArchaeoBob (83 comments)
Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (189 comments)
Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (77 comments)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (107 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (105 comments)

More Diaries...




All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.