October 8th, 2007
08:45 AM ET
10 years ago

Obama: GOP doesn't own faith and values

Obama told an evangelical church in South Carolina: "I am confident we can create a Kingdom right here on Earth."

GREENVILLE, South Carolina (CNN) - After speaking to an evangelical church on Sunday in this traditionally conservative South Carolina city, Sen. Barack Obama said that Republicans no longer have a firm grip on religion in political discourse.

"I think its important particularly for those of us in the Democratic Party to not cede values and faith to any one party," Obama told reporters outside the Redemption World Outreach Center where he attended services.

"I think that what you're seeing is a breaking down of the sharp divisions that existed maybe during the nineties, when at least in politics the perception was that the Democrats were fearful of talking about faith, and on the other hand you had the Republicans who had a particular brand of faith that often times seemed intolerant or pushed people away," he said.

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Related video: Obama: 'Faith plays every role'

Related video : Obama goes after the 'God gap'

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- CNN South Carolina Producer Peter Hamby

Filed under: Candidate Barack Obama • Faith • South Carolina
soundoff (976 Responses)
  1. Nicholas, Grand Rapids, MI

    "When in Rome, do as the Romans." This is why Obama is a powerful speaker. He is merely putting his ideas In linguistic terms in the language that they most closely relate to. To the things that they hope for. Yet if you pay attention to what else he says in this speech you will see that he is also preaching tolerance. This can all be easily confused as pandering to the crowd and many times it is. Lincoln was a great speaker for this reason as well. I think that perhaps Obama is Lincoln come full circle. A man of policy and not party, someone willing to get his hands dirty at great expense to himself.

    October 8, 2007 03:30 am at 3:30 am |
  2. Charlie, Kings Mountain, NC

    Don't believe people who tell you that THEY own religion, that THEY own morality, or that THEY have an answer for all your problems. Doesn't matter who it is, those people are lying to you. Those people are fixated on POWER and the pursuit of power, and they will tell you ANYTHING if you will contribute to their quest for power. They will lie to you, they will use you, and they will ultimately betray you. Every time. Don't be a pawn, don't be a rube. Educate yourself, arm yourself, and become a leader, not a follower.

    October 8, 2007 03:41 am at 3:41 am |
  3. Joe, Anniston, AL

    Liberals were hysterical about the influence of Christianity in elections. After bashing Christians for years, they suddenly have found "religion." Well, lets hope so, but we're not going to be fooled at the voting booth. God and abortion don't mix. Won't work.

    October 8, 2007 03:41 am at 3:41 am |
  4. Chris, Dallas, TX

    Republicans never hijacked faith and values from anyone- they were the ones standing up for faith and values when the Democrats were busy tearing them down. It has been the Democrats who have shoved faith and values out of schools and the courts. It is the Democrats who attack other Republicans for their faith and values. It is the Democrats who use the faith and values of Supreme Court nominees to derail their nominations. It is the Democrats pushing the homosexual agenda, same sex marriage, abortion, easy sex, and so on... It is the Democrats whose mantra is that you cannot legislate morality. It is the left that derides people of faith when they stand up for what they believe in. This is such a transparent attempt to try and win over the independents and evangelicals who are not happy with the Republicans. Who was it that defended Clinton's philandering- the Democrats. How about Barney Frank and the prostitution ring he ran from his apartment? Have we forgotten Gerry Studds having sex with a 17 year old male page? Or even good ol' Kennedy and his sordid history... The political left in this country doesn't have a leg to stand on when it comes to real values and real faith- they don't have the works to back their words. Its disingenuous to say that the Republicans have ever taken faith and values from Democrats... when all they have done is defend what many people on the right hold dear and true.

    October 8, 2007 03:48 am at 3:48 am |

    Sen. Barack Hussein Obama,

    In order to be used of God one must first submit himself to God. That is to agree with what He says about Himself and what He tells us in the Holy Bible, which is His written word. This would include accepting what He says about all of mankind and what one must do to be accepted by Him in order to become His child. He has much to say about what is and is not acceptable in His sight. Killing unborn babies is not acceptable to Him nor is having sex with another of the same sex or with anyone outside of a Godly marriage between a man and a woman. Submit yourself to the Lord!! Then you may ask for God's blessings and God will bless out of His abundance according to His will. Continue to espouse views contrary to God's word and you are cursed; not blessed.
    And that is the way it is!!

    October 8, 2007 03:50 am at 3:50 am |
  6. Michael M, Lebanon, TN

    "Would the Lord Jesus Christ want us to be pitted against each other like we are now? NO! Christ encouraged harmony,"

    "Some of you right-wingers are free to follow your beloved liar into oblivion. Face it, the truth is beyond your little minds."


    Way to encourage harmony.

    You people crack me up.

    October 8, 2007 03:53 am at 3:53 am |
  7. Quentin Beck

    Which faith is he referring, too? Because I'm not praying five times a day and I'll die before I join 'The Nation'

    October 8, 2007 04:06 am at 4:06 am |
  8. Morrisongs

    And u call me crazy for making a politically CONSERVATIVE MUSIC CD! After all the Christian bashing! I say it in song–for the right! Hillary, Edwards and many others get their due–to music. Don't cry–we get one to answer the 'left only' Hollywood.


    October 8, 2007 04:26 am at 4:26 am |
  9. Charles, Evansville, In

    So if Obama is such a God fearing man how can he justify the abortion of the innonce life of children? Just another one that will say anything to get a vote.

    October 8, 2007 04:31 am at 4:31 am |
  10. Brother Robert

    Another worthless black church. There are so many, but why then is the black culture (in America) the most corrupt, the most deadly, the most foul? It's because of worthless "Christian" churhces like this that have Rock & Hip Hop and ranting emotionalism, and no commitment to truth or Christ. Black skin isn't the problem, but a corrupt black culture is. He's pandering to thier worhtless faith. They can't even get that killing babies is wrong, even while they are being born (partial birth abortion). The left's religion is false and self-serving. The black community needs truth and light not more pandering and worthless hedonistic churches.
    Be discerning! Don't fall for every candidate that comes to your church.

    October 8, 2007 04:31 am at 4:31 am |
  11. Chris, Fresno, CA

    How about being a instrument of your country? What end is served by making religious beliefs known?

    October 8, 2007 04:46 am at 4:46 am |
  12. James , Jackson ,GA

    It's easy to talk 'faith' in a church where you are merely a cheerleader or a celebrity. Where are the Politicians values when facing reality.
    Per example: Would they force a daughter to abort or would they sacrifice popularity and encourage their daughter to keep and raise the child?

    October 8, 2007 04:49 am at 4:49 am |
  13. Pog Mahone

    This is utterly ridiculous! If this is to be believed, then you simply have to entertain the thought that there really are TWO Democratic parties in this country operating under the one umbrella. Almost any resident of Berkeley California, as but one prominent example, would be horrified to read this article, as there is a relish there with which they ridicule religion in general and Christians in particular. This is NOT the sort of thing that the new "take-no-prisoners" elements of the Democratic party want to hear at all. Which leaves one to wonder what sort of a game is being played here by Mr. Obama and others who take out the God card every now and again. Methinks they speak with a forked tongue to appease those who the Berekeley California types rudely and condescendingly like to call "red staters" or "rubes".

    October 8, 2007 04:53 am at 4:53 am |
  14. Gus,NY

    Instead of commenting other peoples lifestyle Lynn,let them be and live their life and has their beliefs,rather than demand them to have your beliefs... And as you said they will have to answer to God,not you or this blog...

    October 8, 2007 05:07 am at 5:07 am |
  15. Steve - Nashville, TN

    JRC....yes, there are Christians out there concerned about his comments. He is doing nothing more than pandering to the Christian votes...but for those of us who KNOW what the Word of God says, we know that he is in lost in left field. I stopped listening to him when he said (concerning same sex marriage) "And there are some folks who coming out of the church elevated one line in Romans above the Sermon on the Mount.".....What he obviously has forgotten is that ...IT'S THE SAME MESSAGE....both speak against sexual immorality. I challenge you to go read it for yourself. This guy is a fake. I for one would like to see someone stand up and speak the truth. I for one thank God that Obama is making such statements....it helps me to take him off the list of who I will vote for...

    October 8, 2007 05:20 am at 5:20 am |
  16. HABU, Camarillo, CA

    Nothing new here, a politician using whatever it takes to gain some political traction. Can't blame him for doing it, but it further illuminates the already obvious. He's a politician, just like all the other candidates from both parties, and any of them will say, do, or promise anything to win. You can bet they're all willing to lie, cheat, and steal and he's no different at all.

    October 8, 2007 06:04 am at 6:04 am |
  17. Tom Romano Stuart Fl

    when did conservative evangelical start band music and hip hop music in a worship service.

    in the christian community that we live in, that is called liberal christianity with the emphasis on the individuals and not the spoken words from the pupit.

    a conservative christian worship service puts the emphasis on the word spoken about God and our Savior Jesus Christ. Not some musical show.

    October 8, 2007 06:17 am at 6:17 am |
  18. Paula Valkenburg Cape Coral, Florida

    Has he not heard of people like Mother Teresa. Perhaps he needs to attend biblical churches more often and he will find that they all are involved in serving the community in various ways. I think it's great to only talk about faith when you are in church – that's a Chameleon Christian with faith that is only skin deep. Go Barak! Perhaps you can start the First Chameleon Christian Church if you are unsuccessful at your presidential bid.

    October 8, 2007 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  19. OmarK, Franklin, Me

    You go girl....!!

    October 8, 2007 06:24 am at 6:24 am |
  20. Brian, Maryland

    I will say anything, or do anything that may get me elected. Praise be to Allah. Hussein OBAMA.

    October 8, 2007 06:25 am at 6:25 am |
  21. Brett, Palmdale, Ca

    "Those of us favoring the left-wing values are far more than willing to take the truth Obama promises and move on, not live in the past.

    Posted By Bradley Schaubs, Greeley, CO : October 7, 2007 9:00 pm"

    Left Wing Values? Isn't that an oxymoron.....Look.. Obama, Hilary, Edwards are socialists. Socialism has in the history of man, NEVER worked. It can't...it always brings financial ruin. You accuse President Bush of being a tyrant. Simply because you don't agree with his decisions. But socialists are government nannys and tyranny always results. Grow up kids and smell the personal responsibility.

    October 8, 2007 06:28 am at 6:28 am |
  22. Dan, Peoria, IL

    If Obama's such a good Christian why is he pro-choice? These people will say anything to get elected.

    October 8, 2007 06:29 am at 6:29 am |
  23. Nancy Ruckersville Va

    It must be election time cuz it's time for the dem's to head for the black church... Now it's Obama's turn... I wonder if he'll head down to the white church????

    October 8, 2007 06:32 am at 6:32 am |
  24. Greg, lexington, Ky.

    It seems to me that all the democrats talk about faith when it fits there purpose. The only kingdom on earth will be set up by God not by Obama or anybody else. This is all for show and how about the churches tax-exempt status???

    October 8, 2007 06:33 am at 6:33 am |
  25. Everett Tracey Spring Hill Tennessee

    Obama is no different than any other politician-he works all the angles trying to sway the weak and uninformed. When he decides to proclaim a belief and acceptance in Christ in public then I will listen to what he has to say. He won't do it though because his liberal constituency would abandon him for fear of being perceived as caving into right wing theology and beliefs.

    October 8, 2007 06:33 am at 6:33 am |
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