June 12th, 2008
08:20 AM ET
3 years ago

Analysis: Democrats woo disaffected evangelicals

Gore has ruled out a run for any office but President.
Gore has ruled out a run for any office but President.

WASHINGTON (CNN) - Four years ago, Michael Farris was knee-deep in presidential politics.
Early in the 2004 primary season, he got a call from the Republican National Committee: Would he be willing to mobilize his grass-roots army on behalf of President Bush's re-election effort?

By May that year, his organization, Generation Joshua, was deep into fall planning mode. It had laid the groundwork for an ambitious turnout operation for the general election.

Action teams of young volunteers soon fanned out over the major swing states, spearheading get-out-the-vote efforts, part of an evangelical machine that kept the GOP competitive in the ground game unions and other Democratic groups typically dominate.

In one three-day span, the members of Generation Joshua knocked on more than 15,000 doors in the crucial state of Pennsylvania.

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Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • John McCain
soundoff (108 Responses)
  1. Ex-mod-GOP for Obama

    It seems like every election year my denomination is accused of secretly supporting the Democratic candidate, when all I hear from them is preaching of the Gospel. Coincidence? I'm for keeping church and state separate, but I do have an opinion about which party has been closer to the teachings of Jesus lately.

    June 12, 2008 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  2. Jose'

    Obama wants to start a theocracy in America and continue to divide America.

    ANYBODY but Obama '08!!

    June 12, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  3. Will in Richmond, VA

    Danny,
    Regardless of where the man was brought up, his religious proclivities are irrelevant to his ability to lead this nation. Obama came to the Christian church later in life. He wasn't a religious person. He embraced Christianity by choice. Which in fact, is its own virtue. He wasn't brought up in church, instead came to Christ on his own. His blessings will be what they will be.

    Faith has no place in politics anyway. At least, faith should not be used a s a bludgeon.

    June 12, 2008 11:39 am at 11:39 am |
  4. Will in Richmond, VA

    Evangelicals should feel betrayed by the Republican party, which has used their votes to push a most un-christian agenda.

    Christianity cannot bind you to one political party or another. It's all about your relationship to God, and your relationship with your fellow man. Jesus said the second highest commandment is to love our neighbors as we love ourself. In this, the Republican party, which sought out and used your vote for their own ambitions, failed you and all of us.

    June 12, 2008 11:42 am at 11:42 am |
  5. LS TX

    Yep, from reading some of these blogs, you can tell the kids are home from school.

    Obama '08

    June 12, 2008 11:47 am at 11:47 am |
  6. MD

    David O,

    Go to the Trinity Church of Christ website and read. Obama's church is about as close to christianity as Stalin.

    June 12, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  7. Down with Obama

    Drink the Kool-aid Obama supporters.....

    June 12, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  8. Alanna

    Jose' June 12th, 2008 11:39 am ET

    Obama wants to start a theocracy in America and continue to divide America.

    ANYBODY but Obama '08!!

    --
    No I believe that's the Republican party and John McBush.

    They want to divide this country and already have.

    Obama wants to unite it and make it better.

    So please, just stop the hate.

    June 12, 2008 11:48 am at 11:48 am |
  9. Jeff in Illinois

    As a Christian, I find it impossible to vote for Republicans anymore. Other than being anti-abortion and anti gay marriage, the Republican Party is as far from Christ's message as it can possibly be. Sadly, many Christians do not realize this, and are blinded by these two issues.

    June 12, 2008 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  10. Kelby from Houston, TX

    The thing about considering evangelical voter is the fact that these guys want to put the government in our personal lives.
    These people are the reason why the media pays so much attention to the personal lives of our public servants.
    If there is truly a separation of church and state, their evangelical status should not matter

    June 12, 2008 11:53 am at 11:53 am |
  11. Women - please read up! -Simply kris, NE

    John McSame's record on reproductive rights couldn't be more appalling. There, we said it! We said it because the corporate media won't confront McCain on the real issues in this election. They won't tell you, for instance, that McCain has consistently received a big fat zero from NARAL on its pro-choice scorecard. Nor will they tell you that McCain has flip-flopped on Roe v. Wade and now supports overturning this all-too-crucial case.

    June 12, 2008 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  12. 2Nurselady

    Too bad Barack Obama doesn't "woo" the dissatisfied Democrats – the 18 million Hillary Clinton Democrats he seems to be shutting out of this election. POLITICS AS USUAL. For a minute, he gave me "hope." I thought he would unite the Party, but he has divided us even further, excluding 18 million voters in this country.

    Hillary Clinton would have united us if she were the nominee.

    June 12, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  13. Kelby from Houston, TX

    LISA LISA LISA! Hillary has lost.
    She has issued a concession speech.
    She is not the Democratic nominee.
    Obama is beating McCain in all major polls.
    The Democratic party is uniting around Barrack Obama.
    Barrack Obama can and will win.
    It's people like you specifically that create a divide int he Democratic party.

    STOP THE HATE CHILD!

    OBAMA '08 DEMOCRATS '08 AND FOREVER

    June 12, 2008 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  14. Larry, Apex, North Carolina

    As a committed Christian, it is easy to see that Barak Obama's philosophy is more like Jesus Christ's philosophy than any Republican. Read your Bible, folks-you won't find the Republican way of greed and hate and division touted in there.

    June 12, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  15. Ex-mod-GOP for Obama

    I've been on Trinity United Church of Christ's website a number of times and have never found anything remotely "anti-white" or un-Christian about it. Yes, it is deliberately and distinctly African-American, but that's in no way demeaning to whites like myself. I encourage those interested to read Lutheran pastor and theologian Martin Marty's recent open letter about Trinity.

    June 12, 2008 12:02 pm at 12:02 pm |
  16. Rob

    Clinto backers remember what happened to our Florida;Michigan delegates-vote for McCain in protest

    June 12, 2008 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  17. The Real McCain - Simply_kris, NE

    It is dangerous for a democracy when a presidential candidate can lie with impunity, change positions on a whim, and physically and verbally threaten others and virtually none of it is reported by a besotted media eagerly awaiting the next moment when he might slap their backs in friendship.

    The mainstream press may not do their job, but we can surely do ours. It is crucial that we alert the public to the REAL McCain, and it is crucial we act now, before it's too late.

    June 12, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  18. Rick in California

    Boy, the hysterical anti-relionists need to be less hypocritical. We evangelicals are AMERICANS with as much a concern about politics as any citizen. Our concerns are of the moral tone that the leader of our country sets. Mr. Obama has shown himself to be anti-family by his unbiblical stances against life and actually anti-American by his disgust of the Pledge of Alegience and our nation's anthem.

    Only an EINO (evangelical in name only) would vote for this man that opposes the Christian virtues of honesty, integrety and morality.

    June 12, 2008 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm |
  19. Vote Nader

    To Jen, 11:16 -

    Thank you for providing Sen. McCain's quote on appointing justices and explaining that he is a moderate. But we both know Sen. Obama supporters will either not read it or read it and ignore it.

    ** Nader/Gonzalez 2008 **

    June 12, 2008 12:06 pm at 12:06 pm |
  20. Theresa in Minneapolis

    Rob June 12th, 2008 12:03 pm ET

    Clinto backers remember what happened to our Florida;Michigan delegates-vote for McCain in protest

    _____________________

    Hey Rob... How informed are you? The FL Republicans only get a half vote, too. Not to mention it was the Republican Governer that wanted to change the primary date in the first place. It was the Republicans that stated this whole freaking mess. Maybe to get Bozo's like you mad at the Democratic Party.

    Way to play right into their hand... IF you supported Hillary, you do her a GRAVE injustice to back someone who is totally different than her.

    ANd it makes you an idiot.

    June 12, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  21. ENOUGH

    don't believe this. I heard Obama define "sin" as "not being true to myself" – which means he basically considers himself to be God. I don't think anyone who has real religious beliefs (Muslims included) could support someone who elevates himself to a diety.

    McCain is a one man one woman kind of person and that is why with the help of our knew Hillary supporters he will be in.
    McCain08

    These are my nominations for the funniest posts of the day. Can you believe someone would actually publicly post this drivel?

    Hey McCain08 – if the gelding is such a one man one woman kind of person, how to you explain the manner in which he dumped his first wife – because he wanted to be 25 not 40. Because he wanted to chase skirts. Don't let pesky facts get in your way.

    June 12, 2008 12:12 pm at 12:12 pm |
  22. AJ

    Obama and his supporters make my gag refelx kick in. I'm now supposed to rally around this arrogant empty suit simply because he's a democrat? I have not voted for a republican for any office for 30 years, but I have believed in all of the candidates that I have supported over the years. I believed that they shared my values and goals for our nation. I don't believe Obama has the best interests of anyone but himself at heart. He disgusts me as do his supporters. I will support McCain in the fall. It is no longer about democrat v. republican. It's all about defeating Obama.

    June 12, 2008 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  23. Jeff in Illinois

    Brian in Knoxville...you are truly terrified at the prospect of Barack Obama being president, aren't you. I've never seen anyone so obsessed! Barack Obama won the primary, fair and square. In fact, he was gracious enough to give delegates to Clinton which she should not have had (Florida and Michigan). Obama won the popular vote, won the most number of states, won the most delegates, and the most superdelegates. WHY CAN PEOPLE NOT UNDERSTAND THAT?!

    There are not 18 million Clinton supporters who are stupid enough to vote for John McCain. There MIGHT be 1 million, but you should think before you call out all or most of Clinton's supporters as being die-hard America-hating Neoconservatives, because most of them are not. You belong to a select group of people who wants to vote against the best interests of yourselves and your nation. Most Clinton supporters do NOT hate themselves and their country the way a select few of you do.

    June 12, 2008 12:19 pm at 12:19 pm |
  24. ben

    What a sad day it will be for America when we let religion decide who should lead our nation.

    June 12, 2008 12:20 pm at 12:20 pm |
  25. captain

    Obama haters are the true kool-aid drinkers.

    I believe that a majority of the American people will give both candidates a fair hearing. There is no doubt that Obama can defeat McCain on the merits but Obama isn't really running against John McCain, who never tops the mid-40's in any national poll and inspires virtually no enthusiasm in his own party. The real race in 2008 is between the REAL Obama vs. the FICTIONAL turban-wearing, koran-reading, drug-dealing, America-hating, pornography-pushing, terrorist-loving, white folks-despising Obama.

    Given enough time and exposure to the American people, that is a race that the real Obama can win. The only suspense of the 2008 campaign is, will he.

    June 12, 2008 12:21 pm at 12:21 pm |
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