Steele It Is

It’s over. No doubt there will be plenty of effort expended trying to make the social conservatives happy. But Steele’s agenda is going to be big-tent, which will mean an official welcome mat for pro-choice Republicans. And that will not make the Dobson wing happy. At all.

The Paine Wink

I spent last evening at the Connecticut Forum, where Christopher Hitchens, Peter Gomes, and Harold Kushner spent a couple of hours amusing the crowd with quips and barbs about God, religion, faith, and reason. On the anti-God side, Hitchens believes he has a new ally in the White House; to wit, that Obama is a […]


The scoop, according to NYT’s Laurie Goodstein, is that President Obama will name Joshua DuBois to head COFANP, the Council on Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships that inherits President Bush’s faith-based initiative. The 26-year-old DuBois headed religious outreach for the Obama campaign, and while he wasn’t in the inner circle of chieftains, he is by all […]

Under a Bushel

Dan Gilgoff calls attention to the absence of faith or any reference to social conservatism on the website of Sarah Palin’s new political action committee, and indeed it’s striking. Even Mike Huckabee’s HUCK PAC lists “the family” among the things it cares about. But movement evangelicals like Huckabee and Palin don’t need to advertise who […]

Religion by Region

Gallup has surveyed Americans for religion’s importance and broken the results up by state. Here’s the map: So what’s the explanation? Says Gallup: The question of why residents of some states (e.g., Mississippi and other Southern states) are highly likely to report that religion is an important part of their lives, while residents of other […]

Where’s that Summer youth thing?

Howard Friedman over at Religion Clause has noticed that the fiscal stimulus bill includes $100 million for what’s been known as the faith-based initiative, and also that Rep. Susan Davis (D-CA) has proposed an amendment to increase that to $500 million. The money’s slated for Health and Human Services’ Compassion Capital Fund, whose purpose is […]

Roma locuta denuo

The man once known as God’s Rottweiler justifies giving something for nothing: “I undertook this act of paternal mercy because these prelates had repeatedly manifested to me their deep pain at the situation in which they had come to find themselves,” the pope said. “I hope my gesture is followed by the hoped-for commitment on […]

Social Conservatives under the bus?

The barons of the GOP are longing for a new Haley Barbour to head the RNC, writes Alexander Burns on Politico, and on his account what that means is someone consummately competent at the care and feeding of the apparat. Oh to be able to party like it was 1993-97! But it’s worth bearing in […]