Hillary Clinton and the 'religious vote' in the US

By Simon Barrow
September 29, 2007

Gordon Brown's recent speech to the Labour Party conference raised questions about the meaning, provenance and role of religious rhetoric in mainstream politics. This is an even hotter issue in the USA.

There's an interesting article about it in the Washington Post:

Can She Reach Religious Voters?

By Michael Gerson
Wednesday, September 26, 2007; Page A19

During a question-and-answer session at Tufts University immediately after the 2004 election, Sen. Hillary Clinton identified the alienation of religious voters as one of the Democratic Party's main problems. And the appeal she proposed was straightforward: "No one can read the New Testament of our Bible without recognizing that Jesus had a lot more to say about how we treat the poor than most of the issues that were talked about in this election."

There was a stiff dose of political calculation in her remarks -- but also a streak of sincere liberal Protestantism. As Clinton methodically consolidates her hold on the Democratic presidential nomination, Republicans are facing, in the words of her spiritual biographer Paul Kengor, "the most religious Democrat since Jimmy Carter." And this introduces an unpredictable element into a wide-open election.

Full article and links: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2007/09/25/AR200709...

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