Hagee Acknowledges McCain Sought His Endorsement
Frederick Clarkson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Mar 21, 2008 at 02:58:22 PM EST
Editor and Publisher reports that this Sunday's New York Times magazine will report:
In an interview... controversial televangelist Rev. John Hagee declares, "It's true that [John] McCain's campaign sought my endorsement."

McCain has attempted to distance himself from some of Hagee's views, much as Barack Obama is doing in relation to Rev. Jeremiah Wright. But unlike McCain, Obama has not stood on stage with Wright and accepted his accolades this year.

That's fine as far as it goes. More to the point about the origins of this controversy, Obama did not court and did not accept the endorsement of Louis Farrakhan, while McCain -- as we reported here at Talk to Action, courted Hagee for at least a year; received and touted his endorsement; and has not renounced it even as he has denounced Hagee's views on certain things in general terms.

I am a lot less interested in the various candidate denunciations of the views of thier supporters and pastors (that's easy), than I am the real world political alliances that influence and forge public policy. Louis Farrakhan and for that matter, Jeremiah Wright, are not running big political machines.  But John Hagee is. Via his controversial lobby Christians United for Israel, he assembles the most aggressive of the Armageddonist oriented Christian Zionists into a considerable political force who are beating the drums of war with Iran. John McCain, and for that matter, his supporter Sen. Joe Lieberman, have calculated that CUFI is a necessary constituency for his presidential ambitions.

The question is not whether John McCain endorses the outrageous anti-Catholicism, anti semitism, and anti gay bigotry (clearly he does not) so much as what influence will John Hagee and his allies have on the foreign and military policy of the United States in a McCain administration?

If the answer is 'none' -- then why did McCain so aggressively seek Hagee's support? He really can't have it both ways.

It was not so long ago that McCain denounced Jerry Falwell, Pat Robertson and Bob Jones as "agents of intolerance."  What has changed? Even one of his top foreign policy advisors, former Secretary of State Lawrence Eagleburger, continues to view the Religious Right as "a serious problem."

I wonder what kind of problem Eagleburger and McCain think the religious right is, and whether Hagee (and for that matter Parsley) are part of the problem?




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