Obama spoke in favour of gay marriage, a woman’s right to choose, that contraceptives be available under health insurance. The religious right has discovered that these issues were not enough to prevent a second term, or those of faith supporting Obama.
The evidence suggests that these positions did no harm to Obama’s campaign. Rather the huge support from Hispanic, black, latino and female voters was key – with concerns on economic issues centre stage.
CNN belief blog posed the question about the Christian Right:
In swing state Ohio, exit polls showed that Obama got 30% support among white evangelicals. While that’s hardly a victory, it’s better than the 27% support Obama got among those voters four years ago.
The Pew Survey suggests overall evangelicals did turn out for Romney:
On the news I saw one female republican supporter state that GOP had to support women’s issues and get out of people’s personal lives – noting the contradiction between a small state for the economy but regulating human everyday life choices.
That sort of social libertarianism appeals to a traditional form of Republicanism. Had Romney stood on that platform plus focused more on how employment would go up under his plans, especially for minorities, he might have won. Instead, supporting extreme religious candidates on rape, talking up increasing military spending when budgets are tight, and the same old trickle down economics just did not resonate with voters. On the social issues it galvanised Democratic support to turnout, and for the 47% Romney had discounted to protect their interests via the voting booth.
The Republicans need to engage with the nation, see how to meet their needs, learn to campaign to the voter not the supporter and just become a professional well oiled machine and not one that panders to a losing demographic – the white male evangelicals middle class.
They need to become a party of the whole nation. Right now, a candidate that footed the bill would not stand a chance of being selected. Those that could help with the organisation would not be appointed to the right positions.
Time for GOP to move closer to the electorate. Get the correct mix of people and policies that resonate with the public and it might happen. The religious right need to make room.
Follow up blog: the end of religious politics?
Article written by John Sargeant on Homo economicus’ Weblog