THE BUZZ CONTINUES ABOUT THE RNC MAILER saying that the Dems would ban the Bible and that Arkansas and West Virginia would turn into bastions of sinful homosexual marriage — or “selfish hedonism” as Alan Keyes called it when referring to Mary Cheney.
John Edwards spoke about the issue at a church yesterday — something Amy Sullivan and Melissa Deckman write about a lot — that is Dems need to get religion in their political tool box. I don’t agree but appreciate the view. I have very mixed feelings about church pulpits being used for politicking. Bill Clinton engaged in bible-belting at the pulpit frequently — even when he endorsed Gray Davis against Arnold Schwarzenegger. The argument goes that since the Republicans are doing it — the Democrats need to, and vice versa.
The perverse side of this trend was the RNC attempting to acquire church directories so that it could mail literature and voter registration materials to church-goers, who it seem are overwhelmingly (but not all!) Republican.
I wrote about the legality of this last month, and it seems that the law smiles on those parishioners who volunteer such directories but frowns on those ministers and priests, or other official church representatives, who formally provide the directories — even for voter registration efforts.
In the flood of commentary that followed my posting the RNC mailer, I heard from hundreds of people, including some who also received the flier.
One friend of mine who lives in Arkansas and teaches at Hendrix College found a thread between some of those who received the flier — they belonged to the same church. One of these people apparently had never been involved with any political party or issues and was very surprised to get such mail.
I got on the phone and email to others who had told me that they had received the mailer in West Virginia and in Arkansas — and asked if they belonged to churches, which they did — and asked if they could call around to others at their church. Bingo. In three cases of follow up calls, I found that there were in fact church linkages between some recipients of these disgusting mailers.
This puts that issue of the RNC efforts to get the parish directories in a new light, or better yet, new darkness. This seems pretty high profile and risky for the RNC.
Despite the RNC’s admitting ownership of this now, how was it that Ed Gillespie didn’t know?
Ed, in church — most of them anyway — one of the most important lessons is not to lie.
Are you lying, Ed?
— Steve Clemons