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September 2, 2008

Is Obama's outreach to evangelicals over?

Sen. Barack Obama has launched an ad slamming John McCain's opposition to abortion rights, Politico reports.

"Let me tell you: If Roe vs. Wade is overturned, the lives and health of women will be put at risk. That's why this election is so important," says the nurse-practitioner who narrates Obama's ad. "John McCain's out of touch with women today. McCain wants to take away our right to choose. That's what women need to understand. That's how high the stakes are."

"Goodbye Evangelical Outreach" Mark Hemingway writes at National Review.

Fred Thompson's prepared remarks tonight included: "We need a president who doesn't think that the protection of the unborn or a newly born baby is above his pay grade."

Obama's new ad is an interesting contrast to the events I attended last week where several Democrats placed an emphasis on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies.

Comments

Barack said he is against abortion, but, believes a woman should be able to choose for herself....Isn't that what God says as well...Choose ye this day whom you will serve....If Christians would live the life and stop trying to write so many laws on paper we would see less challenges in our society today...

Barack, I am a Christian and you have my vote.

Chris,
How about looking after the poor and downtrodden? Maybe people should choose to do that instead of being compelled by their government to provide for others. On what basis should a Christian choose which of God's commands he would like to enlist the state in enforcing? Should the state only compel obedience to the major commands about reducing income inequality, or the petty ones regarding murder?

You raise several interesting questions with your language in this post.

Are the lives and health of women somehow not a concern for the evangelical? Does Scripture ever take the position, as a certain opponent of Obama's does, that abortion ought to be impermissible even in cases of rape, incest, or danger to the mother's life?

Do you think that your readership follows these issues with as little attention to policy detail as you? Do you think that because I fancy myself an evangelical (a Presbyterian, even) that I'm beholden to the GOP?

Why would you take the NRO Corner's word for anything these days? Have you read any recent reporting? Isn't it a little odd when Republicans are telling me, as an evangelical, that Obama has rejected me because he ran a legitimate political advertisement? Or is the advertisement questionable from an evangelical's perspective? And wouldn't evangelicals really be the ones to ask about this? And what are Fred Thompson's evangelical credentials, exactly? And how in the world does running this advertisement contrast with either a) the Democratic Party platform or b) the overall goal to reduce unwanted pregnancies? And I guess before I'm done I should ask how much you think you profit by relying on the Corner for your 'news analysis.' Legitimate questions all.

Does McCain have EVANGELICAL values? This is from Fred Thompson's speech last night.

"However, in flight school in Pensacola, he (McCain) did drive a Corvette and date a girl who worked in a bar as a(n) exotic dancer under the name of "Marie, the Flame of Florida."

WHat does Thompson's reference to Obama's not caring for the rights of a "newly born baby" mean? Is he suggesting that Obama is gainst health care for infants or, more bizarrely, a proponent of infanticide? When did the unmitigated meaness of right-wing politics become conflated with the radical love of Christ's teachings? A disgrace!

FOLLOWERS OF CHRIST MUST WALK IN THE SPIRIT...IN ORDER TO LOVE THE WAY GOD LOVES. WHAT MATTERS TO GOD IS FOR US TO KNOW HIM AND SEEK HIS WILL IN WHAT WE THINK, SAY AND DO. WE ALL FALL SHORT, BUT THERE ARE JUST TIMES WHEN WE REALLY DO "KNOW THE TRUTH". GOD WILL EVENTUALLY HAVE HIS PERFECT WILL DONE, AND WE NEED TO REALIZE THAT.
CHRISTIAN VALUES ARE NOT LIBERAL, CONSERVATIVE, OR OF ANY DEMOMINATION. WE NEED TO STOP THIS NONSENSE OF LUMPING ANYONE INTO A PARTICULAR "FACTION", CLUB, GROUP, RICH OR POOR. HUMAN BEING IS WHAT EACH OF US IS, REGARDLESS OF OUR PARTICULAR CIRCUMSTANCES IN LIFE. BEING IN THE SPIRIT AND HAVING UNITY IN THE SPIRIT IS WHAT GOD WANTS FROM US...HE DOESN'T WANT US TO HAVE the spirit of unity...WHEN IT COMES TO HIM. THAT LEAVES HIS WILL OUT.
THAT WAS VERY CLEAR WHEN HUMANS DISOBEYED HIM AND ATTEMPTED TO BUILD A TOWER OF BABAL! (WE CANNOT DO THIS WITHOUT HIM IN HIS TIME.)
WHAT DOES ALL THIS HAVE TO DO WITH THE ISSUE OF ABORTION? OUR CULTURE DOES NOT DICTATE TO GOD WHAT IS RIGHT AND WRONG. WE DO NOT NEED TO "PROGRESS" GOD ALONG INTO OUR CONTINUED DISOBEDIENT CULTURE...EVEN THE SO CALLED MODERN CHRISTIAN ONE. GOD SPEAKS WHAT HE HAS ALWAYS SPOKEN. WE ARE NOT HEARING HIS WORD, SOME CHRISTIANS HAVE NO CLUE WHAT GOD HAS ALREADY REVEALED...WHY WOULD THERE BE SOMETHING MORE FOR HIM TO SPEAK WHEN WE DO NOT DO WHAT HE ALREADY SAYS? WHEN TIME IS OVER, I DO NOT THINK HE WILL CONGRATULATE (US) ON THE NUMBER OF BABIES ABORTED. LET US TAKE CARE OF THE LEAST OF HIS ANYWAY WE CAN...BUT LET US ALSO START TEACHING WHO GOD IS AND HOW TO BECOME EMPOWERED BY THE HOLY SPIRIT; TO WALK IN A HOLY AND RIGHTEOUS WAY AS WE HAVE BEEN ENABLED BY HIS HOLY SPIRIT IN US.
THE GOD OF ALL DOES NOT LEAD A PERSON TO HAVE AN ABORTION...HE DOES OFFER FORGIVENESS IF ONE GOES THAT FAR. HE OFFERS LOVE IN THE MIDST OF CIRCUMSTANCES, PREGNANCY, WHATEVER IS GOING ON IN OUR LIVES. DON'T BUY INTO THE CULTURE OF LIES ABOUT WHAT CHOICE IS..GIVE THANKS AND SEE HOW GREAT HIS LOVE IS FOR US EVEN WITH NEW LIFE.

I think Obama is attempting to be consistent. He wants abortions to be legal, yet he wants to reduce the number of them through a variety of means, both governmental and non-governmental: like ministries to unwed mothers, guaranteed health care and economic support for mothers and children, etc. These are the policies and ministries that Christians should be able to agree on and work together on (recognizing that some Christians feel we should simultaneously try to change the abortion laws).
Many pro-life Christians (like me) feel that the Republican leadership has manipulated Christians using the abortion issue to get our votes, while giving us sub-Christian and unethical policies on a wide range of issues: health care, immigration, war, environment, foreign relations, trade, etc. Let us show respect even when we disagree with each other any may we work together towards policies and practices that cherish life across the entire spectrum.

Adam,
Thompson is referring to Obama's stance AGAINST providing medical care to babies who survive abortion. That is what he is referring to when he says "newly born babies." Instead of shooting the messenger, you should research this for yourself.

Why is it no one faces the coming loss of all human life on this world because of such gross overpopulation that fresh water soon will all be gone?

The earth's resources can satisfy but only a smaller portion of the population we now have!

I am pro-choice in that men and women need to make a choice before sex to protect against pregnancy and disease.

Nonetheless, I know there are other issues that are close to God's heart other than abortion like taking care of widows, orphans and people with much less than me. My guess is that Mr. Obama would be more apt to follow this directive than would Mr. McCain.

In my mind there are tough choices ahead in November with little to choose from.

Tragedy strikes again with the fear mongering position of the religious right. "God needs our help and he won't survive without our bullying power plays" This misunderstanding of the true principles of the Kingdom reflect the pitiful position of todays Church. Dedicating 7 million dollar private planes, enlisting Evangelical Vice Presidents and damning the liberal agenda won't work this time.
The Judgement issue on the Sarah Pallin front shows how indiscriminately insensitive John McCain was in selecting her and the complete disrespect Sarah Pallin had for her daughter's privacy. Maternal instincts were swallowed up in pride and lusting after power. Her speech is irrevelant and her candidacy will be the tombstone of a fallen party.

I'm a retired medical professional, a mother and a grandmother. I am appauled at abortion and those who back it. To me, there is no such thing as a choice whether to carry a child to term or not.

"For the life of the mother?"

What a misconception! Most people do NOT realize that excuse is the reason EVERY abortion, at least in my hospital, is done.. and, sicklingly enough, HUNDREDS are performed here a month for the "health of the mother".

A big majority of the voters in America have no clue, nor do they educate themselves, on how abortions are performed. I believe they want to remain ignorant about it because, if you don't actually see it done, it's easlier to agree with it.

There is a VERY TINY percentage of abortions offered, or preformed for that matter, because the infant is not viable or has a debilitating disease.

You should ask yourself if you truly want to be a supporter of abortion. You will be held accountable.

I'm a retired medical professional, a mother and a grandmother. I am appauled at abortion and those who back it. To me, there is no such thing as a choice whether to carry a child to term or not.

"For the life of the mother?"

What a misconception! Most people do NOT realize that excuse is the reason EVERY abortion, at least in my hospital, is done.. and, sicklingly enough, HUNDREDS are performed here a month for the "health of the mother".

A big majority of the voters in America have no clue, nor do they educate themselves, on how abortions are performed. I believe they want to remain ignorant about it because, if you don't actually see it done, it's easlier to agree with it.

There is a VERY TINY percentage of abortions offered, or preformed for that matter, because the infant is not viable or has a debilitating disease.

You should ask yourself if you truly want to be a supporter of abortion. You will be held accountable.

I find abortion a horrifying act to perform, and is tantamount to murder. But as always in this dispensation of grace, where Christ has yet to fully introduce his kingdom on earth, God has given everyone a free will. Murder is something you can legislate against without much issue. Abortion however deals with the still prevalent right of a woman to deal with her body as she chooses, and so long as it does not negatively affect a third party's rights and privileges under the law, we as human beings are unable to unravel this juridical conundrum. But where a woman desires to abort a child, just to satisfy a matter of convenience for herself, she may be able to satisfy the conscience of the state, but she will not be able to overleap judicial sanctions of her conscience and neither will she be able to placate the Judge who sits on His throne, when this present dispensation comes to an end, and Christ comes in to enforce directly on earth the righteousness of His Father, in His kingdom. I do not sanction a free choice in women to abort, as it would sanction the right to murder a person; to judicially recognize such a thing is in my opinion jurisprudentially abominable. But, with lesser force, to legislate absolutely against it could lead to approximations that could grievously resemble slavery. Hence for now a middle ground must be found, that accommodates the right of a woman to deal with her body in a manner that is conscionable particularly when it relates to an unborn child. It is a fine line to tread, but politics often muddies the road.

There's something seriously wrong in a society where there is a high demand for abortions. Rather than arguing about abortion itself, which is only the symptom of our culture's illness, we need to address the root problems.

People get into trouble when they don't have the resources they need because they'll try to get their needs met however they can. When families are strapped for time & money, or when people feel driven to strive for higher status because of the growing gap between classes, the kids suffer. And there are more teen pregnancies. 8 years of right wing rhetoric & ill-advised policy has done nothing to solve this problem or even mask its symptoms.

Also, when war is plan A, there's a huge loss of lives there, too. Oddly, I don't find Evangelicals saying much about those precious Iraqi babies our weapons have killed.

Religion is too often about the law. But God's love is for the people. He said a lot more in the Bible about social injustice than he did about abortion. In fact, under OT law, a man who caused a miscarriage was not guilty of murder or even manslaughter. It was treated like property damage.

My pro-life vote is for Obama. I believe he cares for people and he'll work to save lives. Just as important, he'll inspire Americans to their best potential. If the people have hope, the Spirit will move with that. I'm praying to see God heal our country by moving Americans to seek the highest way, to love one another. Obama preaches that message of reconciliation in a gracious way.

As I read the various comments by people who claim to follow the Word of God. Only people who are sitting in churches that have had pastors pick and choose what they wish to talk about from the scriptures could be so able to decide life is of so little importance. God's imprint is on every human, born or unborn. In United States we are all reponsible for the laws we live under because we are hiring the people who make them. The church will answer for the deaths of these little ones, because we have not stood up against the selfcentered culture we are now apart of.

Sarah, why do you have to phrase it "opposition to abortion rights"? This terminology comes from those who frame the debate as kind-to-the-pregnant vs. mean-to-the-pregnant. Don't you rather believe it should be letting-inconvenient-babies-live vs. if-the-tissue-blob-complicates-your-life-you-can-kill-it-and-we'll-pretend-it-isn't-human-yet?

All this talk of health of the mother is smoke. The documented fact from studies by the federal government is that if abortion were legal ONLY for rape, incest and the health of the mother, only 3% of the current abortions would take place. 97% are "choices" made for other reasons. Anyone who has been close to these "choices" know that is true. I have been in abortion clinics and have assisted three women in accomplishing their "choice" and each was a panic reaction when they felt they had no "choice". I have come to the knowledge of the truth. The Christ who laid down his life for us all will not think it extreme for a women to lay down her life for 9 months for her child. People are standing in line to adopt. In the USA today for every child placed for adoption there are 3 pending applications seeking a child to adopt. I am an attorney and I see people spending over $30000 to find a child here or abroad to make their on. Abortion is selfish and sinful. Do not be deceived. You cannot be an obedient disciple of Christ and support "choice". It is the antithesis of the life of sacrifice we are called to. I know. I've been there.

Recently ran across this new pro-life slogan:

Unborn children should have the right to keep and
bear arms - and legs and ears and eyes etc.!

Pretty good, huh?
Zelma