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. JW OKC, OK

    Create a "Kingdom right here on Earth." Sounds like the same thing that crazy Iranian is saying. Pretty scary to me.

    October 7, 2007 09:12 pm at 9:12 pm |
  2. Ron Nebraska

    Lee from Ann Arbor,.....just a question, so you must have a houseful of adopted, otherwise unwanted babies, correct?

    October 7, 2007 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  3. Bill Coggins, Cinnaminson NJ

    I don't doubt that Obama is sincere, but I seriously doubt that he has the
    experience, the wisdom and the stature to lead the USA. Let's look at him again in 4 to 8 years.

    October 7, 2007 09:13 pm at 9:13 pm |
  4. Ken, Griffin Ga

    Good Grief...can you imagine if one of the republicans candidates did this?? Every time a republican talks about religion, they are chastised for being too churchy...now Obama can and people praise him. What a double standard.

    October 7, 2007 09:14 pm at 9:14 pm |
  5. Jon Ausberry

    You left wing fascists want a Utopia without the God of the Bible.

    It won't ever happen. Mark it down.

    October 7, 2007 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  6. Stephen Hardy, Gainesville, Florida

    I have one question for Obama.

    You preach unity but practice eugenics "abortion" and how can you be open minded with abortion? Souls are waiting to be born and you think it is okay for woman to decide terminating life while on earth.

    I understand you are selling messages to get elected but keep faith out of politics please because you do not walk the talk.

    October 7, 2007 09:15 pm at 9:15 pm |
  7. Chris M, Virginia Beach, VA

    You MUST be kidding. The fact that people out there can visualize this chameleon as "moral" or possessing Bibilical values clearly tells me just how Biblically illiterate America truly is. Hello?? Have you bothered to investigate what this man actually stands for? The church he attends in Chicago is clearly racist, his views on the sanctity of life are reprehensible, and his overall social worldview is about as anti-Christian and anti-Bibilical as one can get. America, wake up! If you want to vote for this charlatan, than do so, but for crying out loud don't do it because he's "an instrument of God". He's an instrument all right, but he serves another supernatural being. I'll give you a clue – it doesn't start with a "G". Don't be a fool.

    October 7, 2007 09:16 pm at 9:16 pm |
  8. Randy Garver, Aiken, SC

    Obama is the MAN! He has already whooped the bible thumping Republicans and showed them who's boss. If we are going to have peace with the Islamic World, we need Obama (who is a Muslim himself), to prove that the US is not a warmongering nation as Bush, Cheney and Halliburton would have everyone believe. Obama will make peace with Muslims and hasten the advent of Shari'a Law in this country. Allah be praised! By so doing, we can and will avoid war with Iran, a nation that has never done us harm, other than what we deserve.

    October 7, 2007 09:17 pm at 9:17 pm |
  9. Chris

    If George Bush said this you dems would be howling. The stench of your hypocracy is thick.

    October 7, 2007 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  10. John, Batavia, NY

    How come democrats, especially Blacks can go to a church and speak politically and not be criticized like republicans are? Likewise why doesn't anyone ever talk about how political actions like this are supposed to be justifiable cause for revoking a church's tax exempt status?

    October 7, 2007 09:18 pm at 9:18 pm |
  11. Claudia Morris Augusta, GA.

    I have always suspected that the followers of the Left believe in some deluded way that if they just try hard enough and make enough rules that they can indeed create heaven on Earth. That is obviously why we have radical environmentalists who seem to worship the Earth instead of God and why the Left seems so determined to rid our lives of any risks at all. This is a very sad thing to read. There are many fools in our midsts, especially in the political arena. I wish that the party that preaches to the rest of us about tolerance, free speech and love really practiced it with those of us who are not part of their group.

    October 7, 2007 09:19 pm at 9:19 pm |
  12. A guy on his computer

    Barack Obama isn't half the man Dennis Kucinich is. Simple. Watch videos and have an open mind and you'll see. You don't need me to tell you. Dennis' honesty, integrity, courage, and intelligence are self-evident.

    October 7, 2007 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  13. John Smith, Valencia, California

    Unfortunately Mr. Obama is not being at all Biblical. Which of course makes what he has said blasphemy or at least very sinful. Perhaps the good candidate should either brush up on the Bible as many candidates claim to do or steer clear of subjects like God, Jesus and what the Hell kind of paradise he is discussing. Most often it looks like a Socialist Paradise which is another name for "gulag".

    October 7, 2007 09:20 pm at 9:20 pm |
  14. Jon, Chicago, IL

    This proves that Obama is the Messiah! Go Barack!!

    October 7, 2007 09:22 pm at 9:22 pm |
  15. Minnie

    Now I know he is evil.

    October 7, 2007 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  16. Chris, Ramona Ca

    To bad this all just a political show by Obama. A man with his smarts could do a lot of good. But most politicians, Dem and Rep are panderers, and he is just another in the long line of panderers in politics.

    October 7, 2007 09:23 pm at 9:23 pm |
  17. J Davis Mt. Vernon, IL

    May God truly bless Obama and use him. But how can he stand for abortion, which is murder? God's kingdom doesn't include that.

    October 7, 2007 09:24 pm at 9:24 pm |
  18. Washington, DC

    Great. Another politician who wants to be an "instrument of God" and bring the "Kingdom to Earth." Isn't the President we have in office now bad enough? I don't want Christian ideals shoved down my throat, even if it is for supposedly "liberal" ends. President Bush uses God to advance a neoconservative agenda abroad that sacrifices our security and the lives of young men in uniform. He uses God to advance a conservative agenda at home that demeans those who don't fit into a conservative Christian morality. I fail to see how Barack Obama's "God" is any different. Instead, President Obama will do his part to use religion to eviscerate individualism and free will and have us all "voluntarily" giving to charity (read: taxes that fund socialist programs) to help the "less fortunate." What has happened to free thinking in America?

    October 7, 2007 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  19. tom grand rapids michigan

    hmm it seems obama wants to do exactly what the popes were trying to do in the dark ages,
    bringing the kingdom of God to the earth,,
    unfortunately Jesus said his kingdom was not of this world
    which leaves us one alternative as to whose kingdom obama wants to build here,
    well sooner or later his view will succeed, even if he doesn"t

    October 7, 2007 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  20. Allan, Altoona, PA

    Is is just me, or is it kind of frightening to hear that Barack Obama wants to be an "instrument of God" to bring about a "kingdom here on earth" as President? What happened to the separation of Church and State? This sounds like a line hijacked out of one of President Ahmadinejad's speechs. Hillary, while just a religious, is much less polarizing, thank the Lord.

    October 7, 2007 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  21. Keith, Nebraska

    Obama surrounds himself with some of the clothing of religion, but his claim about creating a Kingdom on earth have no connection with Christianity. He demonstrates his ignorance.

    October 7, 2007 09:25 pm at 9:25 pm |
  22. EM, Coral Springs, Fl

    What a phony. You cannot walk into a Christian church and proclaim that the Kingdom is at hand while supporting the murder of unborn children. Christian democrat is an oxymoron.

    October 7, 2007 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  23. Sean, Va. Beach, Va.

    Noone gets it. Left, right. It doesn't matter. This is divide and conquer being played out by BOTH sides. They divide us all on the issues, acting as if they are "the party that cares about YOU".And then they take turns sticking it to all of US. Until everyone wakes up, and starts questioning both sides on a LOT of issues, we'll be stuck in the same cycle. I won't lie. I lean to the right. But, I believe it's "Choose your poison". Right now, I think BOTH parties seem to be catering to their fringes, and that just means most of us "average" folks are going to get pushed aside by either party. The two party system sucks if you ask me. We need a viable 3rd party candidate. With the internet, maybe that will be a reality in the near future......ya never know.

    October 7, 2007 09:26 pm at 9:26 pm |
  24. Al Red Bank NJ

    Can you imagine if a conservative said this?

    This guy is even more gung ho than President Bush

    October 7, 2007 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
  25. Ron Nebraska

    Lee from Ann Arbor.......just wondering about your position on the death penalty, and are you a supporter of the Iraq invasion? I like to know if you' sanctity of life ' types are sincere or do you pick and choose what life to be sanctimonious about?

    October 7, 2007 09:27 pm at 9:27 pm |
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