August 11, 2008
Obama Making No Progress Among Evangelicals?
A new CBS poll has McCain winning among white evangelicals 58% to 24%. Mark Silk notes that if undecideds broke 50-50, Obama would end up with almost one third of the white evangelical vote, a hefty jump over Kerry's 22%. True enough.
But there's another way of looking at it: despite the months worth of outreach to evangelicals, the speeches, the Very Christian campaign literature, the interviews with Relevant and Christianity Today and Christian Broadcasting Network, the Newsweek cover story, etc -- Obama is still not doing any better than Kerry did. (And Kerry did worse among evangelicals than any Democrat since Mike Dukakis).
Perhaps that's just the nature of the moment. For some evangelicals, shifting from voting Republican to Democrat is a big deal. Maybe they need to pause for a few months in Undecided Land. But it's clear that Obama has not come close to reeling in those fish. And I think it's time for them to be asking whether their approach so far is sufficient.
This article is cross-posted from Steve Waldman's blog at Beliefnet.