Rudy Giuliani

Larry Pratt: Obama 'Has Made It Very Clear He Doesn't Like The United States'

Larry Pratt, the far-right conspiracy theorist executive director of Gun Owners of America, who will be hosting a presidential campaign call with Sen. Ted Cruz next week, claimed last month that President Obama has “made it very clear he doesn’t like the United States” and that “he thinks that Christianity is at best on par with jihad.”

Pratt told fringe conservative commentator Stuart Vener that Obama ”doesn’t like people speaking against the dirt bag Muhammad like I just did, he thinks that that is a name to be revered, he thinks that Christianity at best is on par with jihad.”

Agreeing with Vener’s claim that Obama “wants to take everyone’s guns away,” Pratt hailed former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani for “speaking the truth” when he alleged that the president doesn’t love America.

Denouncing Islam as a “extremely murderous, extremely violent” religion, Pratt praises the Europeans who finally “got themselves together” during the Crusades to get “rid of the Muslim dirt bags”.

We’d also like to note that the cohost for Vener’s show, “Stuart Vener Tells It Like It Is!,” is a genie.

        

Frank Gaffney: 'How Could This President Love America' When He Was 'Marinated' In A 'Deep Hatred' For It

The Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney stopped by the American Family Radio at the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Nashville this week to discuss Rudy Giuliani’s recent comment that President Obama doesn’t “love America.”

Gaffney naturally agreed with Giuliani, contending that while Obama might not have a “deep hatred” for America, it is literally impossible for him to love the country.

“How could this president love America?” Gaffney asked AFA president Tim Wildmon. “How could he, given that he grew up in his formative years in an Indonesian madrassa, an Islamist school, he came to this country and sat at the knee of an avowed communist by the name of Frank Marshall Davis, he spent formative years in Chicago hanging with revolutionaries like Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn, he went on to church with Jeremiah Wright?”

“And what all of those people have in common is a deep hatred for our country. So maybe he doesn’t have a deep hatred for it, but it’s hard to see how we could have possibly having incubated in that, marinated in it, come out loving this country. Which brings us to your question. If he doesn’t, we’re in jeopardy, because you need someone in a dangerous world like this who loves this country, who believes it’s exceptional and is willing to stand up for it.”

Tea Party Leader: Obama 'Hates This Nation,' Calls America A Muslim Country

Judson Phillips of Tea Party Nation is thrilled that Rudy Giuliani questioned President Obama’s love for his country, writing in the Washington Times this weekend that the former New York mayor “said what conservatives have been saying for years: Mr. Obama doesn’t love America.”

Warning that Obama “wants to help the Islamists” and “insanely continues to claim America is a Muslim nation,” Phillips concludes that the values Obama “holds of hating America and Western Civilization [that] are the mainstream ideas of the Democrat Party as well.”

“He hates this nation,” Phillips writes. “He is not a patriot. He is the opposite of a patriot.”

Rudy Giuliani shocked the left wing media that acts as a palace guard for Barack Obama this week. He spoke a simple truth.

“I do not believe, and I know this is a horrible thing to say, but I do not believe that the president loves America,” the former New York mayor said at a dinner attended by Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker.

Mr. Giuliani said what conservatives have been saying for years: Mr. Obama doesn’t love America.



Liberals scream when their patriotism is questioned. While they have no compunction about questioning the patriotism of real Americans, they act as if real Americans cannot possibly question their patriotism.

Yes, real Americans can because their patriotism is non-existent.

There are a lot of unpatriotic acts Mr. Obama has committed — from calling conservatives domestic terrorists, to policies designed to undermine the American economy to his release of terrorists so they can return to jihad against America.

America is a Christian nation. While not everyone in this nation professes the Christian faith, culturally this is a Christian nation. Mr. Obama insanely continues to claim America is a Muslim nation. At his seminar this week on Combating Extremist Violence, Mr. Obama again repeated the assertion that Muslims helped build the fabric of America.

Mr. Obama will not name Islamic terrorism as a threat America faces.

Americans have been kidnapped and killed by Islamists and what does Mr. Obama want to do? He wants to help the Islamists.



Mr. Obama does not love this nation. He hates this nation. He is not a patriot. He is the opposite of a patriot.

The alarming part of all of this is that the values Obama holds of hating America and Western Civilization are the mainstream ideas of the Democrat Party as well.

Peter King Defends Rudy Giuliani: Obama Doesn't Have Right 'Fervor' To Fight Terrorism

Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., told Newsmax host Steve Malzberg today that Rudy Giuliani “should not apologize” for claiming that President Obama doesn’t love America. The congressman said Giuliani wasn’t questioning Obama’s patriotism, but simply “does not understand why the president doesn’t have the intensity, doesn’t have any feeling when he speaks about terrorism and combating terrorism.”

“He’s not questioning whether or not he’s a patriot,” King said. “He really believes that President Obama does not have his heart in it the way other presidents have.”

King added that he agrees with Giuliani’s claim: “I feel like [Obama] looks at it in a very intellectual or antiseptic way, that he has to always equalize it, he has to always take one step forward and one step sideways when he talks about this issue. Back in 2009 when he did his apology tour. He does not have the same fervor that other presidents have had.”

“He should not apologize and he has not apologized,” King said of Giuliani. “He displayed the context of it, he was not saying that he’s not patriotic, but he did say that he does not have the fervor and the drive that a president needs to effectively carry out a war.”

Huckabee: GOP Primary Voters Too "Unrealistic"

OnThe 700 Club with Pat Robertson today, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee said that he decided against running for president partly because the Republican base is too “unrealistic.” Robertson, who endorsed Rudy Giuliani in 2008, asked Huckabee if he passed on a second presidential campaign in order to pursue his new career as a Fox News commentator and the head of a line of conservative history videos, which he was promoting on the show.

Huckabee responded, “I felt like the atmosphere right now is so toxic and part of it is that I think that many people in my party, the Republican Party, are unrealistic, and what they want is something that no one can deliver, and that’s a candidate who is going to solve every problem in an election cycle.”

Watch:

Right Wing Round-Up

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Richard Land says the Religious Right is ready to vote for a Mormon ... as a last resort.
  • Jack Kevorkian has died.
  • Rudy Giuliani just never learns.
  • Quote of the day from Matt Barber: "[The] homosexual activist political tsunami destroys everything in its path that is righteous, good and beneficial to society."
  • Finally, speaking of Barber, he and Mat Staver have nothing but great things to say about MassResistance.

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Every time you think the Birthers can't get any more ridiculous, they prove you wrong.
  • Molotov Mitchell explains that even though the Bible prohibits tattoos, it totally doesn't mean it.
  • A two-hour movie all about how great Sarah Palin is?  I won't be watching that.
  • Because it went so well last time, Rudy Giuliani is apparently thinking of making another run for president.
  • Peter LaBarber's obsession with all things gay continues.
  • Finally, Timothy Miller pled not guilty to charges of helping Lisa Miller kidnap her daughter and flee the country.

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 4/5/11

Michele Bachmann

Iowa: Hires Mike Huckabee’s former state director for campaign (MN Public Radio, 4/4).

Religious Right: Slated to speak at Family Leader events (Des Moines Register, 4/4).

Fundraising: Tops Mitt Romney in fundraising (Time, 4/1).

Obama: Says President Obama is deliberately damaging the economy (RWW, 3/31).

Haley Barbour

2012: Wife concerned about presidential race, says bid “horrifies” her (Reuters, 4/2).

Mississippi: Economic conservatives criticize Barbour’s record as governor (Politico, 4/2).

Poll: Trails Huckabee in poll of home state’s Republican voters (Mississippi Press, 3/31).

Herman Cain

Obama: Says President Obama is “not the president of black people” (Daily Caller, 4/4).

Birther: Joins Donald Trump in questioning President Obama’s birth certificate (Politico, 4/1).

Newt Gingrich

Iowa: Defends financial assistance to Religious Right group in Iowa judicial election (Think Progress, 4/4). 

Obama: Likens Obama's fundraising goal to extortion (CNN, 4/4). 

Religious Right: Poised to kickoff right-wing Awakening conference at Liberty University (RWW, 3/28). 

Rudy Giuliani

2012: Frames himself as an electable Republican candidate (GOP12, 4/4).

Foreign Affairs: Criticizes President Obama’s handling of Libyan crisis (Ozarks Unbound, 4/4).

Mike Huckabee

Campaign: Advisers want Huckabee's 2012 campaign to be less family-run (US News & World Report, 4/4). 

South Carolina: Wins straw poll in heavily GOP county in upstate South Carolina (UPI, 4/3). 

Background: Public records as governor destroyed (Mother Jones, 4/1). 

Sarah Palin

Media: Slated to appear in E! True Hollywood story biopic (Mediaite, 4/4).

New Hampshire: Former GOP Senator from New Hampshire slams Palin as overly ambitious, polarizing (Boston Globe, 4/4). 

Rand Paul

Religious Right: Scheduled to address Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition (RWW, 4/4).

Iowa: Speaks to Iowa GOP’s “Night of the Rising Stars” (Iowa Independent, 4/4).

Tim Pawlenty

Obama: Launches new cinematic video to respond to Obama's reelection announcement (HuffPo, 4/4). 

Background: Left Minnesota with a massive budget deficit (LA Times, 4/2). 

Mitt Romney

Foreign Affairs: Claims his experience in business will help him in foreign policy (RCP, 4/5).

New Hampshire: Set to address Koch-funded Americans for Prosperity forum in New Hampshire (CNN, 4/4). 

Campaign: Runs subdued campaign in order to reintroduce himself to voters (NYT, 4/2).

Rick Santorum

South Carolina: Accepts invitation to appear in South Carolina debate for presidential candidates (CBS News, 4/1).

Religious Right: Blames legal abortion for Social Security problems (RWW, 3/29).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/25/11

Michele Bachmann

SOTU: Plans to give her own State of the Union Response to a Tea Party Express rally, even though Wisconsin Rep. Jim Ryan is the official Republican speaker (Star Tribune, 1/24).

History: Maintains that skin color didn’t matter in early America at an Iowans for Tax Reform event (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” Rose Dinner (Politico, 1/24).

Iowa: “Encouraged” by reception at Iowa events (Des Moines Register, 1/22).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Newt Gingrich

2012: Considering a presidential bid with a campaign based in Georgia (AJC, 1/21).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Rudy Giuliani

2012: Floats potential presidential bid despite 2008 defeat (TPM, 1/25).

Palin: Claims that a Palin candidacy would increase his chance of running (WSJ, 1/21).

Mike Huckabee

Debates: Won’t attend early debates in order to preserve his summer deadline (Politico, 1/24).

2012: Must decide whether to give up media “mini-empire” for a presidential run (LA Times, 1/21).

Sarah Palin

Texas: Spoke about how Alaska and Texas are both “good beacons of freedom” at a fundraiser for the Lubbock Christian School (Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, 1/25).

Media: Dana Milbank proposes a month-long media boycott of covering Palin (WaPo, 1/21).

Tim Pawlenty

Book: Releases video advertisement promoting new book, Courage to Stand (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/18).

Mike Pence

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” in Washington, DC (Politico, 1/24).

GOP: May be able to unite economic and social conservatives better than Mike Huckabee (Religion Dispatches, 1/21).

South Carolina: Group of South Carolina state legislators launches a “Draft Pence” effort (RWW, 1/20).

Mitt Romney

Poll: Leads all other rivals in national poll of Republican voters with 24% (Rasmussen Reports, 1/24).

New Hampshire: Wins New Hampshire GOP straw poll (Christian Science Monitor, 1/22).

Health Care: Rove says Romney must respond to criticisms about his health care reform law in Massachusetts (Political Wire, 1/20).

Rick Santorum

Reproductive Rights: Defends criticism of Obama’s views on choice in an Op-Ed for the National Review (NRO, 1/24).

Iowa: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Religious Right: Uses Obama’s race to attack his stance on abortion-rights, slams gay adoption (RWW, 1/19).

John Thune

Tea Party: May have trouble with Tea Party voters over his support for ethanol industry subsidies (The Argus Leader, 1/23).

New Hampshire: Thune fundraisers “making calls in New Hampshire on Thune’s behalf” (The Argus Leader, 1/21).

2012 Candidates Weekly Update 1/25/11

Michele Bachmann

SOTU: Plans to give her own State of the Union Response to a Tea Party Express rally, even though Wisconsin Rep. Jim Ryan is the official Republican speaker (Star Tribune, 1/24).

History: Maintains that skin color didn’t matter in early America at an Iowans for Tax Reform event (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” Rose Dinner (Politico, 1/24).

Iowa: “Encouraged” by reception at Iowa events (Des Moines Register, 1/22).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Newt Gingrich

2012: Considering a presidential bid with a campaign based in Georgia (AJC, 1/21).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Rudy Giuliani

2012: Floats potential presidential bid despite 2008 defeat (TPM, 1/25).

Palin: Claims that a Palin candidacy would increase his chance of running (WSJ, 1/21).

Mike Huckabee

Debates: Won’t attend early debates in order to preserve his summer deadline (Politico, 1/24).

2012: Must decide whether to give up media “mini-empire” for a presidential run (LA Times, 1/21).

Sarah Palin

Texas: Spoke about how Alaska and Texas are both “good beacons of freedom” at a fundraiser for the Lubbock Christian School (Lubbock Avalanche-Journal, 1/25).

Media: Dana Milbank proposes a month-long media boycott of covering Palin (WaPo, 1/21).

Tim Pawlenty

Book: Releases video advertisement promoting new book, Courage to Stand (TPM, 1/24).

Religious Right: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/18).

Mike Pence

Religious Right: Addressed the “March for Life” in Washington, DC (Politico, 1/24).

GOP: May be able to unite economic and social conservatives better than Mike Huckabee (Religion Dispatches, 1/21).

South Carolina: Group of South Carolina state legislators launches a “Draft Pence” effort (RWW, 1/20).

Mitt Romney

Poll: Leads all other rivals in national poll of Republican voters with 24% (Rasmussen Reports, 1/24).

New Hampshire: Wins New Hampshire GOP straw poll (Christian Science Monitor, 1/22).

Health Care: Rove says Romney must respond to criticisms about his health care reform law in Massachusetts (Political Wire, 1/20).

Rick Santorum

Reproductive Rights: Defends criticism of Obama’s views on choice in an Op-Ed for the National Review (NRO, 1/24).

Iowa: Set to attend a meeting of Iowa’s The Family Leader, led by Bob Vander Plaats (RWW, 1/20).

Religious Right: Uses Obama’s race to attack his stance on abortion-rights, slams gay adoption (RWW, 1/19).

John Thune

Tea Party: May have trouble with Tea Party voters over his support for ethanol industry subsidies (The Argus Leader, 1/23).

New Hampshire: Thune fundraisers “making calls in New Hampshire on Thune’s behalf” (The Argus Leader, 1/21).

Right Wing Leftovers

  • Mat Staver says Americans United is "out to literally destroy America."
  • Rudy Giuliani is "absolutely" thinking about running again in 2012.
  • Mike Huckabee will wait until at least the summer before making a decision about running in 2012.
  • The Thomas More Law Center has a rather unique reason for suing over the government bailout of AIG.
  • Finally, Sen. Jim DeMint joins the Religious Right's boycott of CPAC.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • It might help if Rudy Giuliani actually watched the State of the Union Address before he went on television to criticize it.
  • Rep. Steve King seems to think that James O'Keefe's arrest is part of some sort of left-wing plot.
  • Is Orly Taitz planning on running for office?
  • Sometime, when you see things like this, you wonder why people even bother trying to debate the issue of marriage equality.
  • Finally, Maggie Gallagher seems to be setting her side up to play the victim should they lose the Prop 8 trial, claiming that a bunch of their witnesses withdrew out of fear of having their testimony televised.

The Hannity-Terry-Giuliani-Robertson Connection

Over the weekend President Obama spoke, as scheduled, at the University of Notre Dame and, as expected, the protests being led by Alan Keyes and Randall Terry continued.

The protesting has been good for the activist’s profiles, as they have received a lot of media coverage and Keyes was even scheduled to appear on Friday’s episode of “Hannity” but couldn’t make it because he had been arrested and was sitting in jail.  As such, Terry took his place and spewed the sort of nonsense everyone expects from the founder of Operation Rescue while Hannity nodded along in agreement.

The interesting thing about Hannity and Terry coming together to decry this sort of apostasy against the “pro-life” movement was that the last time Terry was throwing around these sorts of accusations was back in 2007 when the pro-choice Rudy Giuliani was seeking the Republican presidential nomination and Terry was targeting those who dared to support him:

So-called 'pro-life Republicans' that are endorsing Rudy - like TX Governor Rick Perry, or NY Representative Pete Sessions, are typical treacherous politicians. They have betrayed innocent blood to support a child-killer; we can only wonder what '30 pieces of silver' they are seeking. Pro-life Republicans are on trial, to see what we value more: life or power; principle or party."

Eventually, Terry focused his ire on Pat Robertson for endorsing Giuliani and even began protesting outside of the CBN office in Washington DC.

And who immediately came to Robertson’s defense?  None other than Sean Hannity, who brought Robertson on the show to explain his endorsement.  And the reason he did that is because Hannity was also an early supporter of Giuliani’s presidential campaign:

It's no secret that Sean Hannity, the conservative Fox News commentator, has helped to raise Rudy Giuliani's profile - but now he's helped the former mayor raise money, too.

In a little noticed event this month, Hannity - co-host of Fox News' "Hannity & Colmes" and host of a popular WABC radio show - introduced the Republican front-runner at a closed-door, $250-per-head fund-raiser Aug. 9 in Cincinnati, campaign officials acknowledge.

In so doing, some believe that Hannity - while clearly a commentator paid to express his opinions - crossed the line from punditry into financial rainmaking for a presidential candidate whose bottom line is now better for it.

When a group of Religious Right leaders declared that they would sooner leave the GOP than support Giuliani if he got the party’s nomination, Hannity brought James Dobson on the program and practically begged him to reconsider, but Dobson would not budge. Eventually, all of Hannity’s championing of Giuliani started getting under the skin of the Religious Right, with leaders like Tony Perkins calling him out for pushing their concerns aside and trying to sell this pro-choice candidate to the right-wing anti-choice base.  

So, just over a year ago, when Hannity was supporting a pro-choice candidate in Rudy Giuliani, he had no use for the hardliners on the Right and their incessant focus on abortion.  

But today, when the pro-choice President of the United States delivers a commencement address, Hannity brings those same hardliners onto his program to join him in lamenting Notre Dame’s betrayal of the sacred principles of the anti-abortion movement.

Right Wing Round-Up

  • Media Matters has compiled an extensive list of quotes from conservative commentators denouncing the use of filibusters to block President Bush's nominees to the Supreme Court or lower courts.
  • David Neiwert catches Newt Gingrich claiming that President Obama "thinks he should get up in the morning and punish Americans."
  • Tips-Q notes that Rudy Giuliani backed out of attending his gay friends' wedding at the very last moment.
  • Good as You comments on the irony that NOM is running ads claiming that gay marriage supporters want to silence the opposition while refusing to accept comments from the opposition on its blog.
  • Publius takes a look at the Oklahoma GOP's platform and notes its obsessive focus with homosexuality.
  • Steve Benen takes issue with Sen. Orrin Hatch's assertion that "empathy" is a code word for "activist judge."

Signs G.O.P. Is Rethinking Its Stance on Gay Marriage?

The New York Times' Adam Nagourney has a piece in today's paper claiming that the "the issue of gay marriage may be turning into more of a hindrance than a help" for the Republican Party. 

Citing a recent poll showing that 57 percent of those under the age 40 said they support marriage equality, Nagourney says it suggests to "many Republicans that the potency of the gay-marriage question is on the decline." He then quotes three Republicans, the first being Steve Schmidt, John McCain's senior strategist during his presidential campaign.

Schmidt recently came out in favor of marriage equality, so it is no surprise that he thinks the GOP should re-examine its stance on the issue. But, as Timothy Potter of the Family Research Council put it, Steve Schmidt isn’t exactly speaking for the majority of the party these days:

Steve Schmidt isn’t the head of the GOP. But I don’t doubt that there are others in the GOP establishment who think like him, and I don’t care. The GOP should do what it thinks is best for itself. I don’t think abandoning a third of your base is necessarily a good idea.

The article also contains a quote from Minnesota Gov. Tim Pawlenty:

Asked if he thought, given recent events, that Republicans were making a political mistake in emphasizing gay issues, Mr. Pawlenty, who is 48, responded: “I think it’s an important issue for our conservative voters.” But he notably did not dwell on the subject.

Apparently, because he didn't "dwell" on the topic, that somehow suggests that the party as a whole is undergoing some sort of shift.

Finally, Nagourney quotes Rudy Giuliani of all people, saying that voters are more concerned with issues like the economy and national security and don't really care about social issues right now:

“Right now, people are not concerned about issues like gay marriage because they are concerned about the economy,” Rudolph W. Giuliani, the former Republican mayor of New York, told reporters in Albany after meeting with Republican members of the state Senate, who are opposing legislation to legalize gay marriage.

Mr. Giuliani explained that he opposed gay marriage — while supporting civil unions — but that he did not think it made much sense for Republicans to be harping on the issue if the party had any serious interest in returning to power.

“The Republican party does best organizing itself around economic issues and issues of national security,” said Mr. Giuliani, 64, who ran for president last year and is now thinking about running for governor of New York.

It should be pointed out that Giuliani might not be a particularly good representation of just what the Republican Party thinks about anything, considering that he spent $60 million seeking the GOP nomination last year and dropped out after securing a whopping one delegate. His campaign tanked thanks, in part, to right-wing threats to abandon the GOP should he become the nominee because of his views on the issue of marriage and reproductive choice.

While polls may show that the GOP's anti-gay views are becoming less popular with voters, especially younger voters, there is still a long way to go before the party itself abandons its traditional stance on the issue ... and considering that the Religious Right would rather see the party destroyed than allow that to happen, it's unlikely that any such a massive shift will be happening any time soon.

The End of Christian America?

In recent days there have appeared two pieces that have generated a lot of attention suggesting that the Religious Right days as a political and cultural force are coming to an end.

The first was Kathleen Parker’s column covering the recent skirmish between right-wing radio host Steve Deace and Tom Minnery of Focus on the Family about James Dobson's and Focus on the Family’s support of John McCain’s presidential campaign. In this fight, Parker sees evidence that “the Christian right [might be] finished as a political entity”:

Deace's point was that established Christian activist groups too often settle for lesser evils in exchange for electing Republicans. He cited as examples Dobson's support of Mitt Romney and John McCain, neither of whom is pro-life or pro-family enough from Deace's perspective.

Compromise may be the grease of politics, but it has no place in Christian orthodoxy, according to Deace.

Put another way, Christians may have no place in the political fray of dealmaking. That doesn't mean one disengages from political life, but it might mean that the church shouldn't be a branch of the Republican Party. It might mean trading fame and fortune (green rooms and fundraisers) for humility and charity.

Deace's radio show may be beneath the radar of most Americans and even most Christians, but he is not alone in his thinking. I was alerted to the Deace-Minnery interview by E. Ray Moore -- founder of the South Carolina-based Exodus Mandate, an initiative to encourage Christian education and home schooling. Moore, who considers himself a member of the Christian right, thinks the movement is imploding.

"It's hard to admit defeat, but this one was self-inflicted," he wrote in an e-mail. "Yes, Dr. Dobson and the pro-family or Christian right political movement is a failure; it would have made me sad to say this in the past, but they have done it to themselves."

A somewhat similar article appears as the cover story of the upcoming issue of Newsweek in which author Jon Meacham predicts that the most recent American Religious Identification Survey showing a rise in the number of self-identified non-believers signals that the United States may be moving into a “post-Christian” era:

This is not to say that the Christian God is dead, but that he is less of a force in American politics and culture than at any other time in recent memory. To the surprise of liberals who fear the advent of an evangelical theocracy and to the dismay of religious conservatives who long to see their faith more fully expressed in public life, Christians are now making up a declining percentage of the American population.

Much of Meacham’s piece is predicated on concerns raised by Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, who notes that, according to the survey, “the Northeast emerged in 2008 as the new stronghold of the religiously unidentified” which signals that “the historic foundation of America's religious culture was cracking:

"The post-Christian narrative is radically different; it offers spirituality, however defined, without binding authority," [Mohler] told me. "It is based on an understanding of history that presumes a less tolerant past and a more tolerant future, with the present as an important transitional step." The present, in this sense, is less about the death of God and more about the birth of many gods. The rising numbers of religiously unaffiliated Americans are people more apt to call themselves "spiritual" rather than "religious."

Evangelical Christians have long believed that the United States should be a nation whose political life is based upon and governed by their interpretation of biblical and theological principles. If the church believes drinking to be a sin, for instance, then the laws of the state should ban the consumption of alcohol. If the church believes the theory of evolution conflicts with a literal reading of the Book of Genesis, then the public schools should tailor their lessons accordingly. If the church believes abortion should be outlawed, then the legislatures and courts of the land should follow suit. The intensity of feeling about how Christian the nation should be has ebbed and flowed since Jamestown; there is, as the Bible says, no thing new under the sun. For more than 40 years, the debate that began with the Supreme Court's decision to end mandatory school prayer in 1962 (and accelerated with the Roe v. Wade ruling 11 years later) may not have been novel, but it has been ferocious. Fearing the coming of a Europe-like secular state, the right longed to engineer a return to what it believed was a Christian America of yore.

But that project has failed, at least for now. In Texas, authorities have decided to side with science, not theology, in a dispute over the teaching of evolution. The terrible economic times have not led to an increase in church attendance. In Iowa last Friday, the state Supreme Court ruled against a ban on same-sex marriage, a defeat for religious conservatives. Such evidence is what has believers fretting about the possibility of an age dominated by a newly muscular secularism. "The moral teachings of Christianity have exerted an incalculable influence on Western civilization," Mohler says. "As those moral teachings fade into cultural memory, a secularized morality takes their place. Once Christianity is abandoned by a significant portion of the population, the moral landscape necessarily changes. For the better part of the 20th century, the nations of Western Europe led the way in the abandonment of Christian commitments. Christian moral reflexes and moral principles gave way to the loosening grip of a Christian memory. Now even that Christian memory is absent from the lives of millions."

I have to say I find this temptation from commentators to write the Religious Right’s obituary after every Republican electoral setback rather remarkable.  For one thing, as we pointed out not too long ago, these sorts of pieces appear every few years, only to be overtaken a short time later with pieces marveling that the “sudden” and “unexpected” resurgence of the “values voters" crowd. In addition, despite the gloominess from the likes of Mohler and Deace, the Religious Right is more committed than ever to regrouping as a “resistance movement” to fight for its agenda and eventually regain its position as an influential and powerful political and social force.

And that day may come sooner than many realize. While it might seem at the moment that the Religious Right is on its way out, it is important to remember that the GOP has lost exactly one mid-term election and one presidential election and Democrats have controlled Congress and the White House for less than three months.  

Doesn’t anyone else remember all the talk following George W. Bush’s election, and especially his re-election, about the “values voters” and coming of a “permanent Republican majority” which would give the GOP ironclad control over the reigns of government for decades to come?

Remind me again: how did that all work out?  

The point is that political fortunes change … and often change rapidly. It is far, far too early to be declaring the Religious Right to be dead based on two elections and three months of Democratic government.

Frankly, the Religious Right’s political clout has never really been tested and so it is hard to know just if they are losing power because whenever the GOP wins elections, the Right is quick to claim credit for mobilizing grassroots support, but when the GOP loses the Right is quick to chalk the loss up to the party’s failure to embrace the right-wing agenda.

There are really only two scenarios under which predictions about the Right’s demise can reliably be made.  The first is a situation in which the GOP nominates a hard-line, right-wing true believer - someone like Rick Santorum - as its presidential candidate and sees that candidate get destroyed nationwide on Election Day.  The second is if the GOP can manage to actually nominate a presidential candidate who is fundamentally unacceptable to the Right – someone like Rudy Giuliani – and then have that candidate go on to win election to the White House.

But until the GOP nominates a true-believer and loses or right-wing heretic and wins, the Religious Right will continue to maintain a very significant amount of control of one of our nation’s two main political parties … and no amount of punditry announcing its demise will change that fact.

Perry Woos the Right With State Address

Given that Republican Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison seems intent on challenging Republican Governor Rick Perry next year, it looks like Perry is getting a head start on sewing up right-wing support as he attempts to hold her off:

Gov. Rick Perry delivered his state of the state address to a joint session of the Legislature as if it were a campaign speech.

...

[W]ith the Republican governor planning to run for re-election next year — and Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison preparing to challenge him — there was plenty to energize a conservative, red-meat political base Perry is counting on.

“As we consider the growing threats to our nation’s unborn, I believe it’s time to add another layer of protection for the most vulnerable Texans,” he said.

Perry said pregnant women should be required to see an ultrasound before being allowed to get an abortion. And he advocated adult stem cell research — not embryonic stem cells, a flash point for anti-abortion advocates whom the governor invited as Capitol guests.

“I was thrilled to have him discuss that,” said Joe Pojman of Texas Alliance for Life.

Hutchison supports abortion rights, although with restrictions. Perry’s political team plans to use the issue against her in the GOP primary, where social conservatives will make up about a quarter of the vote.

For those keeping score, Perry spent more time on abortion (seven sentences) than on college tuition (one sentence) or reducing insurance rates and expanding children’s health coverage (zero and zero) ... Tuesday’s speech was a triumph for social conservatives — especially on abortion and Perry’s support of another issue popular with the conservative base — requiring voters to show a photo ID.

“All this stuff, the base really has a passion for,” said Kelly Shackelford of Plano-based Liberty Legal Institute.

Interestingly, Rick Scarborough, who has already made his opposition to Hutchison's intended run well known, was also in attendance and apparently has gotten over his "grave disappointment" in Perry due to the Governor's endorsement of Rudy Giuliani during the GOP primaries:

The governor stood in front of the chamber, the San Jacinto flag behind him. The Rev. Rick Scarborough, an influential East Texas evangelist and Perry guest, applauded from his seat in the back.

Scarborough and Perry have not always seen eye to eye. There was, for example, the governor’s unfortunate support of anti-gun, pro-abortion rights candidate Rudy Giuliani in last year’s presidential race.

“I’ve talked with him about that,” Scarborough said darkly, as if alluding a prodigal son’s wayward years.

Huckabee Picks Up Where He Left Off

One of Mike Huckabee’s favorite strategies during his primary campaign was to show up in local churches for Sunday services and speak from the pulpit.  It was something he did repeatedly and he always insisted that he was there to deliver a sermon, not a political speech, though it was often rather difficult to tell the two apart.

Now that he is out on the trail again, this time selling his new book, it looks like he’s dusted off his favorite play from his campaign playbook:

As guest pastor of a Sunday evening church service at Westside Baptist Church, Mike Huckabee wasted no time joking about his unique situation of delivering a sermon as a former politician who once vied for the 2008 Republican presidential nomination … Although Huckabee, 53, told the congregation he wasn't there "to be political," the first 20 minutes of his 40-minute sermon was sprinkled with references to the presidential election and self-deprecating commentary on his own unsuccessful bid to capture the nomination.

In an interview shortly after signing hundreds of copies of his new book, Huckabee, who now keeps busy hosting a weekly Fox News Channel show, said he's taking it one step at a time.

"It's too early to start thinking about that," he said regarding a possible second bid for the presidency.

Of course Huckabee has to say that it’s too early to be thinking about another presidential run, but considering that he ended his new book with a pretty definitive declaration that he intends to make another run, that is a little hard to believe.

And news like this only serves to make it even harder to believe:   

Barack Obama is more than six weeks away from assuming the presidency, and the next Iowa caucuses are more than three years away, but a national poll out Friday suggests that former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee and Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin top the list of potential 2012 Republican presidential hopefuls.

Huckabee leads in the CNN/Opinion Research Corp. poll released Friday. The survey is an early measure of possible support for the next GOP presidential nomination.  

The margin for error in the poll means that Mike Huckabee (34%) is essentially tied with Sarah Palin (32%), but he still comes in ahead of other possible candidates like Mitt Romney (28%), Newt Gingrich (27%), Rudy Giuliani (23%), and Bobby Jindal (19%).

Inside the Council for National Policy

Sarah Posner sends a dispatch from inside the most recent Council for National Policy gathering, the secretive right-wing umbrella group that vowed to bolt the GOP if Rudy Giuliani was the nominee and whose members wept tears of joy when John McCain tapped Sarah Palin as his running mate:

While the CNP was trying to look to the future last week, it seemed hopelessly enamored of its aging leaders. When I arrived to meet Warren Smith, the conservative evangelical activist and journalist who had invited me to chat, we ambled past anti-evolutionist Ken Ham, who was holding court to a small but rapt audience in the hallway; eyed Left Behind author and CNP co-founder Tim LaHaye, who was shuffling in and out of the "CNP Networking Room;" caught a glimpse of Rick Santorum, who since being booted out of his Senate seat has led the charge against "radical Islam" from his perch at the conservative Ethics and Public Policy Center; and spotted the religious right's anti-feminism doyenne Phyllis Schlafly, 84, who had earlier that day delivered a speech to the CNP Youth Council on how to "find your place in the conservative movement."

Although the CNP's meetings are closed to the press, Smith filled me in on some details: Conservative direct-mail entrepreneur Richard Viguerie, a patriarch of the modern conservative movement, rallied the troops by pointing to prior comebacks, from Reagan to Gingrich to Bush. Viguerie, Smith told me, "is saying that we need to fight for conservative ideas and conservative values and not worry about who embraces them." Smith added that the group talked "about changing the culture, entertainment, media, TV" -- a longtime goal of the religious right's dominionism that it seeks to achieve by taking over social, cultural, and government institutions, much like religious-right figures are now plotting their new takeover of the Republican National Committee.

"What I'm hearing is that there is no loyalty to the Republican Party," said Smith, meaning no loyalty to the party as constituted but loyalty to one purged of insufficiently conservative members. "What Richard Viguerie talks about is not a third party but a third wave. Basically there needs to be a flowering of grass-roots conservative activism and local groups, local PACs. He's basically saying you've got a Republican county commissioner in Buzzard's Breath, Texas, and he's not a conservative? Run a conservative against him."

[A]ctivist and radio host Janet Porter, an early Huckabee backer in the 2008 campaign, told me she favored either Palin or Huckabee in 2012. Porter is straight out of the wing of the movement that is all frothing ideology, and no stone-cold strategy. That explains her ongoing fixation with the long-debunked lie that Barack Obama does not have a U.S. birth certificate, and her attempt to stop the electoral college from voting next month in the formality that will officially make him president.

Porter insists that Obama has not produced a U.S. birth certificate (he has) and that he was actually born in Kenya (he was born in Hawaii). She claims to be awaiting the results of the lawsuits filed by attorney Philip J. Berg, whose effort to halt the presidential election because of the alleged question of Obama's U.S. citizenship was rebuffed by the United States Supreme Court.

When I asked Porter about the mood around the CNP meeting, she said, "My mood is more upbeat than those who don't actually know these cases are being filed and that there's actually still a chance to maintain the freedom that we have. We're not going away. Win or lose, whether this goes through, whether it amounts to anything, we just believe that [for] something this important we need the answers. And we're going to fight for freedom, and we're going to use whatever freedom we have until it's taken away with the efforts of hate crimes, ENDA, fairness doctrine, wiping out all the pro-life legislation. Everything's on the line."

My skepticism showed, I suspect. "I think this might be a little more newsworthy than you think," she insisted and handed me a flyer about her effort that read: "Not extreme. Not fringe. Just Constitutional."

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Rudy Giuliani Posts Archive

Mikayla Bean, Thursday 05/21/2015, 3:32pm
Larry Pratt, the far-right conspiracy theorist executive director of Gun Owners of America, who will be hosting a presidential campaign call with Sen. Ted Cruz next week, claimed last month that President Obama has “made it very clear he doesn’t like the United States” and that “he thinks that Christianity is at best on par with jihad.” Pratt told fringe conservative commentator Stuart Vener that Obama ”doesn’t like people speaking against the dirt bag Muhammad like I just did, he thinks that that is a name to be revered, he thinks that Christianity... MORE >
Miranda Blue, Wednesday 02/25/2015, 4:24pm
The Center for Security Policy’s Frank Gaffney stopped by the American Family Radio at the National Religious Broadcasters convention in Nashville this week to discuss Rudy Giuliani’s recent comment that President Obama doesn’t “love America.” Gaffney naturally agreed with Giuliani, contending that while Obama might not have a “deep hatred” for America, it is literally impossible for him to love the country. “How could this president love America?” Gaffney asked AFA president Tim Wildmon. “How could he, given that he grew up in his... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 02/23/2015, 5:05pm
Judson Phillips of Tea Party Nation is thrilled that Rudy Giuliani questioned President Obama’s love for his country, writing in the Washington Times this weekend that the former New York mayor “said what conservatives have been saying for years: Mr. Obama doesn’t love America.” Warning that Obama “wants to help the Islamists” and “insanely continues to claim America is a Muslim nation,” Phillips concludes that the values Obama “holds of hating America and Western Civilization [that] are the mainstream ideas of the Democrat Party as well.... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Monday 02/23/2015, 5:00pm
Rep. Peter King, R-N.Y., told Newsmax host Steve Malzberg today that Rudy Giuliani “should not apologize” for claiming that President Obama doesn’t love America. The congressman said Giuliani wasn’t questioning Obama’s patriotism, but simply “does not understand why the president doesn’t have the intensity, doesn’t have any feeling when he speaks about terrorism and combating terrorism.” “He’s not questioning whether or not he’s a patriot,” King said. “He really believes that President Obama does not have his... MORE >
Brian Tashman, Tuesday 08/02/2011, 1:33pm
OnThe 700 Club with Pat Robertson today, former Arkansas governor Mike Huckabee said that he decided against running for president partly because the Republican base is too “unrealistic.” Robertson, who endorsed Rudy Giuliani in 2008, asked Huckabee if he passed on a second presidential campaign in order to pursue his new career as a Fox News commentator and the head of a line of conservative history videos, which he was promoting on the show. Huckabee responded, “I felt like the atmosphere right now is so toxic and part of it is that I think that many people in my party,... MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Monday 07/18/2011, 5:56pm
Towleroad: Rudy Giuliani Tells GOP To Lay Off Gay Marriage. Alvin McEwen: Marcus Bachmann lies again - 'Barbarian' tape not doctored. Joe Sudbay @ Americablog: Leader of discredited ex-gay movement compares it to Weight Watchers. Frances Martel @ Mediaite: Fox & Friends: Romney ‘Obviously Not Being A Christian’ Helps Perry Run. Robin Marty @ RH Reality Check: Kansas Considers "Heartbeat" Ban. Nick @ Bold Faith Type: Herman Cain Contradicts Himself on 'Separation of Church and State.' MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Friday 06/03/2011, 5:41pm
Richard Land says the Religious Right is ready to vote for a Mormon ... as a last resort. Jack Kevorkian has died. Rudy Giuliani just never learns. Quote of the day from Matt Barber: "[The] homosexual activist political tsunami destroys everything in its path that is righteous, good and beneficial to society." Finally, speaking of Barber, he and Mat Staver have nothing but great things to say about MassResistance. MORE >
Kyle Mantyla, Wednesday 05/25/2011, 5:33pm
Every time you think the Birthers can't get any more ridiculous, they prove you wrong. Molotov Mitchell explains that even though the Bible prohibits tattoos, it totally doesn't mean it. A two-hour movie all about how great Sarah Palin is?  I won't be watching that. Because it went so well last time, Rudy Giuliani is apparently thinking of making another run for president. Peter LaBarber's obsession with all things gay continues. Finally, Timothy Miller pled not guilty to charges of helping Lisa Miller kidnap her daughter and flee the country. MORE >