This year’s Presidential election will prove to be an interesting one for the evangelical Christian base of the Republican party. Presuming Mitt Romney wins the GOP nomination, voters are going to have to choose between two candidates whose American birthrights and religion are being scrutinized, by those on the right.
Since before President Obama was elected, he has faced ridiculous and conspiratorial charges of being ineligible to be President, because, among other reasons that are false, his father was born in Kenya. Romney’s father was born in Mexico, and some in the ‘birther’ crowd are questioning his legitimacy as well, although many think they are using this as a backdoor way of delegitimizing the President.
There is also a religious war, of sorts, in the quest for the Presidency. Obama, who is a Christian, has been plagued with questions about his religion. Throughout, people have claimed that he is a Muslim while almost simultaneously complaining that the Christian church he attended in Chicago was “too black.” Regardless, Obama is a Christian. Romney, on the other hand, is a Mormon, a religion that in the eyes of many Christians, is a cult. Pastor Rick Warren of the evangelical Saddleback Church doesn’t believe that Romney is a “real” Christian. On a Sunday interview with ABC, Warren told interviewer Jake Tapper:
“Well, the key sticking point for evangelicals and actually for many is the issue of the Trinity,” the evangelical pastor explained. “Orthodox Christians, Catholic Christians, Protestant Christians, evangelical Christians and Pentecostal Christians all believe in the Trinity; that’s the historic doctrine of the church, that God is three-in-one. Not three gods; one God in Father, Son and Holy Spirit.”
“Mormonism denies that. That’s a sticking point for a lot of Catholic Christians, evangelical Christians, Pentecostal Christians, because they don’t — they don’t believe that.”
“Now they’ll use the same terminology, but they don’t believe in the historic doctrine of the Trinity,” Warren added. “And people have tried to make it other issues. But that’s really one of the fundamental differences.”
Here’s the video:
Warren isn’t alone among Christians. In fact, Obama has seen his approval rating double among evangelicals, from 11% during the 2008 election to 22% today. While that is still a minority, and a tenuous minority at that, it does show one of two things…either that after four years as President, people are finally beginning to accept that Obama has no “Muslim agenda” or that they aren’t buying Romney as one of them.
So far, at least, Romney isn’t helping himself. Despite over four years of Obama having to answer questions about his religion, Romney has expressed only hostility at questions about his.