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The Party Faithful: How and Why Democrats Are Closing the God Gap

by

The Party Faithful: How and Why Democrats Are Closing the God Gap Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

As late as the 1960s, religion was a decidedly nonpartisan affair in the United States. In the past forty years, however, despite abundant evidence that Americans care about their candidates' personal faith, Democrats have beat a retreat in the competition for religious voters and the discussion of morality, effectively ceding religion to the Republicans. Elections show that voters have gotten the message: Democrats are on the wrong side of the God gap.

With unprecedented access to politicians, campaign advisers, and religious leaders, Amy Sullivan skillfully traces the Democratic Party's fall from grace among religious voters, showing how the party lost its primacy — and maybe its soul — in the process. It's a story that begins with the party's ineffectual response to the rise of the religious right and culminates with John Kerry's defeat in the 2004 presidential election. Sullivan documents key turning points along the way, such as the party's alienation of Catholics on the abortion issue and its failure to emulate Bill Clinton's success at reaching religious voters. She demonstrates that there was nothing inevitable about the defection of values voters to the GOP and the emergence of the God gap: it was not just a Republican achievement but the Democrats' failure to embrace their own faith and engage religious Americans on social issues.

Sullivan's story has a hopeful ending. She takes readers behind the scenes of the Democrats' recent religious turnaround. She offers insight into the ways Democrats have reoriented their campaigns to appeal to religious voters — including their successes at framing the abortion issue in less-divisive terms and at finding common ground with evangelical leaders and communities.

Timely, informative, and immensely thought-provoking, The Party Faithful is a tough and revealing analysis of the Democratic Party's relationship to religion and an essential primer for evaluating the outcome of the 2008 presidential election.

Table of Contents

Contents

Author's Note

1. JESUS BUMPS AND GOD GAPS — Introduction

2. "THE GODDAM CHRISTIANS" — How Democrats Lost Evangelicals

3. "KEEP YOUR ROSARIES OFF MY OVARIES" — How Democrats Lost Catholics

4. ISAIAH 40:31 — Bill Clinton's Faithful Presidency

5. "WE DON'T DO WHITE CHURCHES" — John Kerry's Religion Disaster

6. PRO-LIFE AND PRO-CHOICE — A Breakthrough on Abortion

7. "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN?" — The Democrats Discover Evangelicals

8. A LEVEL PRAYING FIELD

Conclusion

Appendix A

Appendix B

Acknowledgments

Notes

Index

Product Details

ISBN:
9780743297868
Author:
Sullivan, Amy
Publisher:
Scribner Book Company
Subject:
Political Ideologies - Conservatism & Liberalism
Subject:
Political Process - Political Parties
Subject:
General
Subject:
Christianity and politics
Subject:
United states
Subject:
Religion, Politics & State
Subject:
Christianity and politics -- United States.
Subject:
Democratic Party (U.S.)
Subject:
Politics - General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Hardback
Publication Date:
20080231
Binding:
HARDCOVER
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Pages:
272
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in

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Related Subjects


History and Social Science » Politics » General
Religion » Christianity » Social and Political Issues
Religion » Western Religions » Social and Political Issues

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