Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Religious Bigotry in the Republican Party

I'm finding the fractures in the religious right to be interesting. Much of the religious right has lined up behind Romney, who is still legitimately in the race. A lot of evangelicals, however, look like they'd rather vote for a no-hoper than a Mormon. And Huckabee seems to be deliberately drawing out a losing campaign for the express purpose of sucking votes away from Romney.

I'm wondering how conservative Catholics, Jews, and Mormons feel about their colleagues on the religious right? Certainly, they can't feel like full partners in the movement. (I don't particularly see a Catholic or a Jew getting any better treatment from the religious right than Romney has.)

My problem with Huckabee stems from my perception that he wants to impose his religion on the rest of the country. We've got the fairly explicit comments he made in South Carolina suggesting that the Constitution should be re-drafted to bring it more into line with christian fundamentalist principles.

We've also got the way that he keeps taking cheap shots at Romney's religion. Similar attacks were made on Brownback earlier in the campaign.

(The Christmas card seems to have been released by an "independent" group sympathetic to Huckabee. Huckabee did not condemn it or call for the group to stop, even after it was brought to his attention. His refusal is widely interpreted as tacit approval.)

I've taken my fair share of cheap shots at Romney, but it really ticks me off when his religion becomes this sort of an issue. The fact that Huckabee considers such attacks to be a prime campaign tactic convinces me that I should vote for almost anyone other than him.

It even convinces me that I would vote against a McCain/Huckabee ticket for fear that McCain wouldn't make it through his term, and we'd end up with a president trying to impose a christian fundamentalist version of sharia law.

This country has elected a Jehovah's Witness, a Quaker, and a Catholic to the presidency. I think that the country is better for having people of diverse viewpoints in the presidency at different times. I have very little patience for people who try to exploit religious intolerance for political gain.