Discussion: What role does faith play in your politics?

Yesterday, the Democrats held an interfaith church service, picketed by a group called COCORE.org, which is made up of several Colorado atheist organizations. The group asserted the Democrats are “assisting the emergence of a religious-left to counter the religious-right.”

Religion, however, is a big part of politics. It’s unlikely that’s going to change anytime soon.

But here’s why I ask. Over the last two weeks, I’ve been interviewing several Minnesota delegates to the two major party conventions. Two have made a particular impression. On the Democratic side, Rep. Yolanda Lehman of St. Cloud is a liberal who clearly comes to her politics as an extension of her faith. She can cite the Bible for guidance on a political philosophy.

Nancy Haapoja of Redwood Falls is a Republican delegate (watch for her profile later this week). She is the director of the Campus Life Center of Youth for Christ. She also comes to politics by way of her faith. She, too, cites the Bible for guidance on her political philosophy.

Two delegates, both come to their politics through their religious belief, both cite the Bible as their favorite book, both pray to the same God, yet both end up in very different locations on the political spectrum.

How is that possible? And what about you? What is the role of your faith in politics? Did your faith shape your politics and, if so, how?

  • Al

    How is it possible that people go to the same Bible and end up choosing different ends of the political spectrum? If you follow the commandments “Thou shalt not kill” and “Love your neighbor as yourself” how do you do anything but pull hair out trying to make a decision? Let’s choose the pro-life party as Jesus would. Would that be the party who is pro-choice on abortion or the party who is pro-death penalty and pro-war? There is no pro-life party. There is no party of Christ in this country. The decision is of the lesser of two evils.

  • Jim

    I would have been with those picketing outside. People can pray in their churches but our government should remain secular.

  • kelly

    I am not a religous person and anytime a political person makes any religious refrence I am completly turned off.

    Religon and politics do not go well together.

    We continue to fight with other countrys over religion and maybe if people stoped praying and started acting we could get some shit done.