June 12th, 2008
08:20 AM ET
4 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. Comanche

    I don't see much of Jesus' character in Obama at all. Jesus would never support millions of innocent babies being killed, many by the toturous act of partial-birth abortion. Jesus is pure in everything he says and does, very much unlike the smooth-talking, deceptive monster Obama. Jesus never robs the rich to give to the poor; he changes people's hearts so they will be motivated to give themselves.

    June 12, 2008 12:24 pm at 12:24 pm |
  2. martin

    religious folks should hate war and killing.instead they have staunchly supported it for the last two elections.i would gladly forgive them ,if they would support peace and unity ,instead of hate and war.i think GOD is proud of the obama movement,and the positive feelings it's brought to so many around the world.rev. wright,flegler,hagee,lieberman,ect., are men who preach hate ,instead of hope ,for the future.i would see nothing wrong with president obama NOT attending a church ,throughout his presidency,and rely on what's in his own heart.i lost faith in established religion years ago,and ,now feel closer to GOD than ever.

    June 12, 2008 12:26 pm at 12:26 pm |
  3. Say No more wars ! - Simply_kris, NE.

    I dont even know how these repubelican fear mongers succeed.I mean, comon – look at the facts.We have almost all the latest advanced weapon systems.Our army is super strong.We have bases in more than 100 countries.Our naval fleets are almost always prepared for possible threats.

    We cant even compare to the terrorist attacks menace that other countries face.

    I ASK YOU, WHAT SHOULD WE FEAR FROM? If at all anyone should be afraid, it must be our enemies.

    What could infact be more dangerous is electing a president who doesnt know/remember his view on things.We(or the world) cannot afford another "war" chanter.Say NO to McOld.

    Ask these War/Fear mongers to shove it up their you know what !
    Think before you vote !

    June 12, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  4. Little Red Riding Hood

    Sen. Obama is a wolf in sheep's clothing. Trust me.

    June 12, 2008 12:29 pm at 12:29 pm |
  5. Linda

    Again, Senator Obama is the one who unifies. No one should be afraid to bring everyone to the table. Great job, Senator Obama. I trust you to lead this country in the right direction.

    June 12, 2008 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  6. hmmm

    MD – His former church is the Trinity United Church of Christ. If you are going to tell people to look up the church, at least get the name of the church right. Furthermore, there is nothing non Christian that can be found on their website, perhaps you are trying to spread unfactual rumors? The only thing anyone could find fault with on the website is that it mentions several times that it is proud of its Black heritage and African American roots. But I find nothing wrong with that, just as I wouldn't if I found myself in a Polish American church that was proud of its congregation and roots... I'm a non white, non black person who has visited the church several times and was made to feel very welcome each time. So before you spread lies about a church you know nothing about, maybe you could visit and who knows, make a friend in Jesus while you're there?

    June 12, 2008 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  7. sgf

    Lisa are you still dreaming???? Hillary a chance??? Please wake up and get a life.

    June 12, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  8. Ralph

    We eveangelicals will vote for Obama, or we will not vote at all.

    June 12, 2008 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  9. Rudy NYC

    These reactions among evangelicals, who I consider to be the wisest voting demographic, is a reflection of the "new american voter" wave that is sweeping across America.

    This tidal wave of the voters evolving from "sheep" into "wolves", no longer doing what they are told but thinking and voting for themselves, has been instigated by Bush. Bush has created a generation of voters who now cast serious doubts on what politicians say and promise.

    The internet allows them to do some fact checking of their own. The media is faster in bringing stories, and doing their own research to provide more indepth coverage.

    BigFoot Commentary

    June 12, 2008 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  10. GOP --Voters are not stupid, please STOP

    MCCAIN IS NOW OBSESSED WITH THE OBAMAS AND LOSING FOCUS ON ISSUES.

    June 12, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  11. Will

    Obama is selling out the soul of the Democratic Party for a few evangelical votes. We cannot let evangelicals decide who will lead our nation. Who knows what back room deals Obama is cutting with the religious leaders. Democrats need to tell Obama to stop it.

    June 12, 2008 12:35 pm at 12:35 pm |
  12. Proud American

    Lets Go Dems!!!!!!!

    June 12, 2008 12:40 pm at 12:40 pm |
  13. obamerican canada

    AGNOSTIC DEMOCRAT:- I CAN'T WAIT TO THANK YOU FOR TELLIG IT AS IT IS TO LISA,PLEASE CAN YOU DO ME A FAVOUR?

    PLEASE USE A LONGER AND HARSHER WORDS FOR THAT DUMB CALLED LIESA,STUPID HATE MONGER LIKE HER. THANKS A.D.

    PETER CANADA.

    June 12, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  14. insanity

    >Raymond Duke wrote on June 12th, 2008 10:40 am ET

    >I love that cnn is so fair and unbaised and pulls just about every >comment that is not postive for Obama and lets a couple of mild >ones slide. Fact 1. His middle name is Hussien. Fact 2. He did >attend and was a church memeber to a radical anti-white church .fact >3. He and some of his follwers including his wife made anti- >american statements . fact 4 . He is friends with radical terriost like >"Ayers". Fact 5. He will not release his birth certificate for public >scrutiny . What is so damaging that he won't release it. I will not vote >for this man for them reasons. What he stands for is against >everything "GOD' stands for and america.
    -------------------------

    Hey Raymond Duke, you can't think so you're letting the right wing media think for you. It's idiots like you who let others think for you and vote based on lies and innuendo, who gave us George Bush.
    You call others unpatriotic, but look at what George Bush has done. McSame will be extending those policies.

    Stop being a moron, think and try to find out the facts. Don't give us another George bush by using old right wing tactics.
    Vote Obama !!

    June 12, 2008 12:42 pm at 12:42 pm |
  15. Print this CNN! I Dare You.

    True Evangelicals could NEVER vote for Obama, because he not only supports abortion, but also partial birth abortion (which means you could still kill a child even after it's 6 months in the womb and a viable life form. A child could be born premmie at 6 months and Obama would say it's ok to crush it's skull). Yet CNN probably won't publish this because they are so obviously biased towards Obama.

    June 12, 2008 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  16. Proud American

    Brian,
    Get a life. Rush, Bush and McCain arent on this site. They are on Fox.

    June 12, 2008 12:44 pm at 12:44 pm |
  17. Belle

    What is this about his birth certificate anyway? Why would he not release it? It is not like he had any control over what is on It.

    June 12, 2008 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  18. Rudy NYC

    The choice for evangelicals should be pretty cut and dried. We have two main candidates to choose from.

    A candidate whose main message is one of war.

    A candidate whose main message is one of peace.

    June 12, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  19. Eric in Ca

    Commentors... please go to Obama's website to learn more about his candidacy. Stop the rumors and ignorant comments. People reading these posts can only see how narrow-minded this country is.

    More war, eroding economy, eroding womens' rights, eroding environment, eroding civil liberties, no healthcare...then McCain is your man. If you can honestly say you are better off now under the Bush admin. then Congrats! But the majority of Americans are not!

    Learn the facts about both candidates and where they stand on issues!

    June 12, 2008 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  20. C from Texas

    ben June 12th, 2008 12:20 pm ET

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

    ---------------------------------

    Ben, religion does run our country...have you not looked on the dollar bill or read the US Constitution.

    This is the problem with America, the liberals are trying to do away with people beliefs.

    Obama= false hope, why would anyone vote for him? Just name one thing that he has done since he was in office.

    BTW- it's a solider job to fight wars, Congress voted to go to War,President Bush doesn't have this power, this mean the democrats did too. How short the Americans memories are, remember 9-11. If these Soldiers didn't want to fight a war then they should of never join the Military, they were not drafted. What? did they just want a free ride.

    Ex- Air Force and Proud of it.

    McCain "08

    June 12, 2008 12:49 pm at 12:49 pm |
  21. Texas Trail Dog

    HOW DARE SUCH A PERSON AS OBAMA EVEN APPROACH A RELIGIOUS MAN. AFTER HIS TWENTY YEARS WITH REV. WRIGHT HE HAD NO RELIGION ONLY HATE. HE NOW HAS HIS OWN WEB SITE AND I READ SOME OF HIS PEOPLES BLOGS, "OH BOY! NOW WE HAVE THE TRUTH TO STOP THESE RUMORS," RUMORS??? HIS WEB SITE CAN'T STOP NOTHING, WORDS COMING FROM HIS MOUTH CAN'T STOP NOTHING. WHAT HE SPEAKS IS MEMORIZED PREPARED SPEECHES THAT CLINTON'S EX STAFF WROTE FOR HIM. DOES THIS MAKE HIM TRUTHFUL. HECK NO!!! WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU PEOPLE? SO MANY TRUTHS YOU HAVE SEEN WITH YOUR OWN EYES THAT CAME FROM THE MOUTHS OF THESE PEOPLE YOU HAVE SEEN AND YOU STILL DO NOT BELIEVE? OF COURSE AAs WILL ONLY BELIEVE IN COLOR, RACIST THE LOT OF THEM. BUT I EXPECT MORE FROM YOU BROWN, RED, YELLOW AND WHITE PEOPLE. I WOULD NOT THINK YOU COULD BE SO EASILY FOOLED BY THESE LIES OF OBAMAS. HE HAS BEEN CHALLENGED TO TAKE LIE DETECTOR TESTS, HE REFUSED. IF YOU PEOPLE THAT KNOW HOW TO USE RESEARCH TOOLS THEN YOU NEED TO DO SOME RESEARCHING BEFORE YOU VOTE FOR THIS EVIL MAN AND HIS JUST AS EVIL WIFE MICHELLE. HE'S GOING TO FIGHT BACK HE SAYS. WELL DO SOMETHING TO DISCOUNT THESE RUMORS THAT YOU CALL THEM. WHEN I LISTEN TO YOUR OWN ADMITTING ABOUT LISTENING TO REV. WRIGHT AND HEARING THE WORDS COME OUT OF MICHELLE'S MOUTH, WHAT RUMORS IS THAT? BESIDES, THESE RELIGIOUS PEOPLE YOU TALKED TO, WHERE THEY CHURCH OF CHRIST. I WONDER WHY IF NOT YOU WOULD BE TALKING TO THEM. BECAUSE YOUR CHURCH TEACHES THERE IS ONLY ONE CHURCH AND ALL THE OTHERS ARE DOOMED TO HADES. IS THIS NOT RIGHT? A QUESTION YOU NEED TO ANSWER.

    June 12, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  22. flavoter

    We continue to see people giving up any shred of morality they may have had. To find a reason to endorse McSame. This man left his wife (Carol) to be with a woman who has money and influence, for his own political gain. Sound Like a male goldigger to me. And the first lady would be this person with plenty of her own problems that will have to be a distraction to McSame. Such as In 1989, Cindy McCain became addicted to opioid painkillers such as Percocet and Vicodin, she was also known as during the Keating Five scandal,"as a bookkeeper who had difficulty finding receipts". what about in 1992, Tom Gosinski, the director of government and international affairs for AVMT, discovered her drug theft. Just to name a couple of things should she have gone to jail?

    But there are those who will say forgive and forget,would you be forgiven at your job or in your community? why should we it's a part of McSame and he wants to be apart of every person in the country. So I care, But i'm not forcing myself to vote for him either. Does morality mean anything anymore?

    June 12, 2008 12:50 pm at 12:50 pm |
  23. Love Huckabee

    I'm one of them. I am a devote Evangelical Christian, who's penecostal. However, I was really disappointed when Huckabee lost, but with liars like Hillary and McCain, I'll take Obama anyday.

    I voted for GW Bush in 2004, because I just didn't trust John Kerry, and he was very lethargic to boot. However, I can't vote McCain.

    The problem is that Republicans have hijacked the Evangelical vote with abortion and gay marriage, both which I'm against, however they are letting soldiers die in this war, people go hungry, and letting the rich get richer. I am an independent, and glad.

    By the way, I'm a 31 year old black female. Getting tired of the same old politics. McCain is more of the same.

    Before they say it's the news media, the news media is run by special interest, and lobbists. They are about greed. The last thing they want is Obama in office. So they say some good things, but they scrutinize every word, because they are gonna make it hard. Most of those lobbists are Republican, not liberal. The head of the FCC is a republican. Fair and balanced is not true, it's all about making money.

    June 12, 2008 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  24. CB

    Stones, Stones, Stones! I see a lot of houses cracking.

    Oh! My God!

    June 12, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
  25. Delaware Voter

    Lisa wrote : "Experience vs Change you do the math!!!!"

    She is wrong, whether you are Repub or Dem.

    1992 George HW Bush (experience) vs Bill Clinton (change). Remember who won?

    June 12, 2008 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
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