September 10th, 2010
11:57 AM ET
12 years ago

Social conservatives mix faith and politics at conference

[cnn-photo-caption image= caption =" Tony Perkins president of the Family Research Council addresses the crowd at the Faith and Freedom Conference and Strategy Briefing."]

Washington (CNN) – At the Faith and Freedom Conference and Strategy Briefing, social conservatives filed into the Mayflower Hotel in Washington, DC to hear from a who's who of conservative voices.

The group says on its website the goal of the conference was to "mobilize and train people of faith to be effective citizens" and "to speak out in the public arena and in the media on behalf of common-sense values." The event was put together by former head of the Christian Coalition, Ralph Reed.

Tucker Carlson was the first speaker of the day. The editor of the online Daily Caller began the day by lambasting, what he called, the liberal media and encouraging the members of the audience to stop complaining and start acting. Carlson, a former CNN commentator, was introduced as such and the very mention of CNN drew boos from the crowd.

Many of the speakers quoted from the Bible to make their political points. Ken Blackwell, the former mayor of Cincinnati, Ohio and current chairman of the Ohio Faith and Freedom Coalition, paraphrased the Gospel and John and told the audience they needed to stand up for what they believed , "It is time for you to put your candle on a candle stick and not stick it under a bushel, raise it high and say our God lives," he said.

Tony Perkins the president of the Family Research Council said to be pro-life and pro-family wins elections. "To suggest as some have that abortion should be sideline as part of the conservative agenda is not only morally wrong but also economically wrong." Perkins, a former Marine, told the crowd that, "Christians must not be seduced by the sirens who would tell them to put aside their moral convictions." That he said would be a form of "idolatry."

On the speaker's docket for the rest of the day: former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich and Republican Governor of Virginia Bob McDonnell.

Filed under: Christian Coalition • Faith • Tony Perkins
soundoff (122 Responses)
  1. vegage

    And that is the worst mix possible, religion and politics. Do we forget the entire horrible things that catholic church committed when they had the control over government? That is why the founder fathers created the separation between church and government. I know republicans which are the same thing to conservatives want to have control of the government because that will give them the platform to mix religion with the policies in the government.

    September 10, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  2. Henry Miller, Libertarian

    Unfortunately, "social conservatives" seem to be all for denying freedom to those who disagree with their faith.

    September 10, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  3. Scott in Atlanta

    I'm a Christian and a Democrat (not so unheard of), but I don't like the way the right wing has hijacked Christianity and perverted it to justify war, or overzealous dogma.

    Christ is about relationship, not religion. Yes, what's right is right, and what's wrong is wrong, but Christ would never ask you to compromise your faith...

    September 10, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  4. Irena

    Excellent presentation of the issues at stake! Finally, it is obvious who has been trying to control the economy, the corporations that are supported by the Republican party! Why are people so stupid! How can they not understand what the issues are? Thank God we have a president who is willing to challenge this misguided platform that is being presented to the American people on all the media. It is all we hear. Finally, the president is able to define what is really going on.

    September 10, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  5. LacrosseMom(the real one)

    Republicans always wrap themselves in the Flag and with the Church. They have NO solutions, NO NEW ideas........ just the same old failed policies like:

    Trickle-down economics that kept our nation in a recession from 1981-1984 and even further. In 1983, we had 10% unemployment & Reagan was president!

    Bush Tax Cuts to those who earn over $250,000; IF the Bush Tax Cuts had worked..... Bush Tax Cuts have been around for years, would we be in this recession? After all, the Economic Meltdown started in.......2007.... WITH the Bush Tax Cuts in place!

    As a Christian, I am deeply offended by the holier-than-thou Republicans! They USE Faith, to gain power. Half of them are not REALLY Christians, because hate is not a Christian value.

    The Republicans have always had the same old strategy: Hate, Lies, Fear & Division.......... HOW ARE THESE CHRISTIAN VALUES?

    September 10, 2010 12:30 pm at 12:30 pm |
  6. LacrosseMom(the real one)


    Being able to quote from the Bible does not make you a Christian!

    September 10, 2010 12:31 pm at 12:31 pm |
  7. El Gordo

    Conservatives are full of Jesus in election season, but they make fun of the faithful once they are safely in office. And, they never deliver on their promises to fundamentalist Christians.

    Fool me once, shame on you.
    Fool me twice, shame on me.
    Fool me a hundred times over fifty years and I must be a Conservative voter.

    September 10, 2010 12:32 pm at 12:32 pm |
  8. tugboat

    Interesting that when they DO reference the Bible, it's only the Old Testament they quote which preached fire and brimstone. Jesus didn't preach that in the New Testament – He preached love God and love your neighbor as yourself. These social conservatives need to stop hiding behind the Bible and put CHRIST back in Christian

    September 10, 2010 12:33 pm at 12:33 pm |
  9. KDud

    There is a reason why our founding fathers established the concept of 'Separation of church and state'. Religion has NO place in politics. It is a danger game to play when politicans infuse their religious views onto the public.

    September 10, 2010 12:34 pm at 12:34 pm |
  10. Marvin

    Please don't use these radicals to view Christianity. Just as we shouldn't use the radicals to view Islam. Are we all stupid? Educate yourself America.

    September 10, 2010 12:37 pm at 12:37 pm |
  11. NVa Native

    Their brand of "faith" destroys our freedom.

    September 10, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  12. katiec

    In addition to intelligent comments, what is Newt doing at a conference such as this?? Has he become a so called born again Christian??
    With his past record he most certainly does not have the right to point fingers at anyone.
    America, we must stand strong for the separation of church and state. These people are trying to push their narrow mindedness down our throats and take over our country.

    September 10, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  13. Papasan in AZ

    Fascism has come to America wrapped in the U.S. flag and carrying a cross...
    What the Fascists fear most of all is intelligence.
    Stay stupid America, the GOP loves you that way.

    P.S. has the proof that right wing loonies are retards in patriotic clothing...

    September 10, 2010 12:38 pm at 12:38 pm |
  14. Papasan in AZ

    Fascism has come to America wrapped in the U.S. flag and carrying a cross...
    What the Fascists fear most of all is intelligence.
    Stay stupid America, the GOP loves you that way.

    P.S. latftp dot com has the proof that right wing loonies are retards in patriotic clothing...

    September 10, 2010 12:39 pm at 12:39 pm |
  15. ronalde

    a room full of nut jobs,who say one thing and do just the opposite.

    September 10, 2010 12:43 pm at 12:43 pm |
  16. Brian

    Tony Perkins and his theocratic followers would like to see the country ruled by a single religious power and not by the Constitution and its Bill of Rights.

    This country is NOT a theocracy, and voters need to keep their intensely personal religious views out of their reasoning when electing candidates to office. Atheists, Muslims and other Americans can embody all of the values in our Constitution without even a mention of Christianity or faith. There is NOTHING exclusive between religion and the United States of America.

    September 10, 2010 12:46 pm at 12:46 pm |
  17. Ben O

    This is a classic example of the right-wing nutjobs mixing politics with religion. Will Jesus ever do this?

    September 10, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  18. John Smith

    I am so tired of this fascists pushing their "truths" and "morals" down my throat!

    September 10, 2010 12:47 pm at 12:47 pm |
  19. gg

    This event was put on by Ralph Reed, a close associate of convicted felon Jack Abramoff and looney tunes cultist Pat Robertson. Ralph Reed is a liar and a fraud. Ralph Reed is a corrupt politician of the first order. Ralph Reed's only interest is in stealing as much money as he can, while destroying other people in the process. Thus, Ralph Reed is a stalwart of the modern Repubilcan party.

    September 10, 2010 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  20. me

    Some republicans can talk the talk, but, no way can they walk the talk. They don't mind being in a crowded area to speak their hate, but, one on one they always sing a different tune. Example: Nevada republican running for the senate. I just hope she keeps running, and running, and running, far, far, away.

    September 10, 2010 12:48 pm at 12:48 pm |
  21. Chuck

    That is the most terrifying headline I've seen all week.

    September 10, 2010 12:52 pm at 12:52 pm |
  22. aliou in Jacksonville, FL

    What's new in christianity? Remember the inquisition? Read your bible and the glorification of wars between israel and all its neighbors. The bible is riddle with wars and fights, glorified because the Israelites portray themselves as the people of God. What an irony.

    The reality is that, whenever anyone decides that he/she has a direct line to God and no one else does, then they become fanatic. In fact whenever such a situation arise in a person's life, it's insanity. Not all people whose brain don't quite function as well as it should have are in a mental institution or are walking around with a stick in their nose.
    IF God made all of us, don't you think he has the direct line to all of us? Some people give themselves so much power that they have a password to the "kindom" and or that God kept a password to your mind and not that of anyone else.

    September 10, 2010 12:53 pm at 12:53 pm |
  23. aliou in Jacksonville, FL

    Papasan in az: I Igree with you. Don't forget the idiosynchrecies that come with it.

    September 10, 2010 12:54 pm at 12:54 pm |
  24. Jilli

    True chrisianity is about the last thing I would associate with todays conservatives – their actions speak much louder than their hollow words. I guess they just practice a different brand of christianity than I live. Screw your neighbor and only the rich are worthy aren't my a part of my religion or principles.

    September 10, 2010 12:56 pm at 12:56 pm |
  25. Republicans is smart in the head area

    I wonder if good Christian Conservatives like Mark Sanford (infidelity), John Ensign (infidelity and bribery), and David Vitter (prostitutes and diapers) will be in attendance to cast their moral aspersions on everyone to the left of John Birch?

    September 10, 2010 12:57 pm at 12:57 pm |
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