First lady implores black churchgoers to get political
June 28th, 2012
04:40 PM ET
2 years ago

First lady implores black churchgoers to get political

(CNN) - First lady Michelle Obama made an impassioned pitch for black churchgoers to embrace political action on Thursday in a speech to the country's oldest black religious denomination.

"To anyone who says that church is no place to talk about these issues, you tell them there is no place better," Obama said at a conference of the African Methodist Episcopal Church in Nashville, Tennessee.

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Filed under: 2012 • Belief Blog • Michelle Obama • Tennessee
Bias against Mormon presidential candidate unchanged since 1967, poll finds
The Mormon temple at church headquarters in Salt Lake City, Utah.
June 21st, 2012
01:44 PM ET
2 years ago

Bias against Mormon presidential candidate unchanged since 1967, poll finds

(CNN) - Bias against a Mormon presidential candidate hasn’t budged in 45 years, with 18% of Americans saying they would not vote for a well-qualified candidate who happened to be Mormon, according to a Gallup Poll released Thursday.

The survey points up potential challenges for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, who is vying to be the first Mormon in the White House.

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Filed under: Religion
Key Catholic group drops support for White House contraception plan
June 18th, 2012
05:21 PM ET
2 years ago

Key Catholic group drops support for White House contraception plan

(CNN) - The Obama administration's key Catholic ally on its controversial plan to require health insurers to provide free contraceptive coverage is dropping support for the plan, potentially complicating the president's relations with Catholics in an election year.

The Catholic Health Association, which comprises 2,000 Catholic hospitals, health systems and related organizations, said Friday that although it had initially supported what the White House called a compromise on the contraception issue, it is now "deeply concerned" about the plan and says the White House "has not relieved our initial concerns."

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Filed under: 2012 • Belief Blog • Faith • Health care • White House
Source: Obama campaign hires faith outreach director
May 14th, 2012
07:26 PM ET
2 years ago

Source: Obama campaign hires faith outreach director

Washington (CNN) – Just as it confronts fallout with some religious communities over President Barack Obama’s newly expressed support for same-sex marriage, the Obama re-election campaign is hiring a religious outreach director, an activist close to the campaign said Monday.

Michael Wear, who currently serves as executive assistant to the executive director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships, will join the Obama campaign in Chicago as Faith Vote Director, according to James Salt, a Catholic activist who is close to the Obama campaign and White House.

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Filed under: 2012 • Faith • President Obama • Religion
Obama's same-sex marriage support riles religious conservatives
May 9th, 2012
05:05 PM ET
2 years ago

Obama's same-sex marriage support riles religious conservatives

(CNN) – U.S. President Barack Obama's endorsement of gay marriage on Wednesday outraged conservative Christian leaders, who vowed to use it as an organizing tool in the 2012 elections, but the move is also activating the liberal base, raising big questions about who gains and loses politically.

"It cuts both ways – it activates both Democratic and Republican base voters," said John Green, an expert on religion and politics at the University of Akron. "The most likely effect is that it makes an already close election even closer."

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Filed under: President Obama • Religion
Biden's support for gay marriage matches most Catholics' views
May 7th, 2012
09:12 AM ET
2 years ago

Biden's support for gay marriage matches most Catholics' views

(CNN) - Apparent White House division over gay marriage – with Vice President Joe Biden saying Sunday that he is “absolutely comfortable” with the idea, going further than President Obama has on the issue – mirrors a nation that is evenly divided on the matter. Recent polls show that about half of Americans favor legalized gay marriage, while half oppose it, with support for the idea gaining significant ground over the past 15 years.

Pew’s latest polling on the issue, conducted late last year, found that 46% of Americans support favor allowing gays and lesbians to marry legally, while 44% are opposed. Support for gay civil unions is substantially higher, with a clear majority of Americans supporting such arrangements.

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Filed under: 2012 • Belief Blog • Faith • Joe Biden • Same-sex marriage
May 1st, 2012
05:11 PM ET
2 years ago

House candidate and rising GOP star is black, female – and Mormon

(CNN) - To call Mia Love a minority is an understatement. She’s a black woman who won an upset primary race to become the Republican candidate in Utah’s 4th Congressional District. If elected, she’d be the first black Republican congresswoman in the House of Representatives.

Love, who has attracted lots of national Republican support, also stands out because of her religion: She’s a Mormon. The politician is a poster child for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ campaign to present a more diverse face to a historically very white church.

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Filed under: Utah
After contraception controversy, Catholic Church announces 'religious freedom' campaign
April 13th, 2012
01:45 PM ET
2 years ago

After contraception controversy, Catholic Church announces 'religious freedom' campaign

(CNN) - The Roman Catholic Church announced a major campaign Thursday aimed at bringing attention to what it said were growing threats to religious liberty in the United States, including the pending White House rule requiring health insurance companies to provide free contraceptive coverage to employees of Catholic organizations.

An official with the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops said the initiative would stretch out over the course of a few years and that it would include everything from encouraging priests to address religious liberty concerns in church to sending inserts for church bulletins.

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Filed under: Religion
Evangelical leader: Mormonism will become a bigger issue for Romney
April 11th, 2012
04:07 PM ET
2 years ago

Evangelical leader: Mormonism will become a bigger issue for Romney

(CNN) – A top evangelical leader who is close to Mitt Romney's presidential campaign says the candidate's Mormon faith will be even more of an issue in the general election than it has been in the primary, predicting that the focus on Romney's faith will present a challenge to Romney.

Richard Land, the public policy chief for the Southern Baptist Convention, said Wednesday that he expects that the news media will make Mormonism more of an issue in an attempt to get independent voters to support President Barack Obama.

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Filed under: 2012 • Mitt Romney
With Santorum suspending campaign, some religious conservatives wonder how to proceed
April 10th, 2012
04:53 PM ET
2 years ago

With Santorum suspending campaign, some religious conservatives wonder how to proceed

(CNN) – Evangelical activist Michael Farris was not exactly surprised that Rick Santorum suspended his campaign on Tuesday. But that doesn't mean that Farris, a longtime political organizer, knows what he's supposed to do now.

"Right now my choice is to sit on my hands and do nothing or to actively try to find some alternative" to Mitt Romney, Farris said in an interview shortly after Santorum's announcement.

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Filed under: 2012 • Rick Santorum
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