Pro Deo Et Patria- An Army Chaplain

I am a chaplain in the US Army, serving in Iraq. I'm keeping a blog to share my thoughts and experiences while deployed. They are my thoughts and they don't necessarily reflect the opinions of the US Army! :)

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Should Religion Matter?

On a tangent that has nothing to do with is a question:

Should the religion of a Presidential candidate matter? That's a question that has surfaced in the past, and will be at the fore-front, I believe, in this next Presidential election.

In 1960, many Americans wrestled with the question of whether or not we could elect a Roman Catholic as President. Eventually, Kennedy became the first Roman Catholic President. The sky didn't fall. And today, the majority of the members of the Supreme Court are Roman Catholics, and they represent the more conservative viewpoints, by and large.

So what about this next Presidential election? Hillary Clinton, the likely Democratic nominee, is a Bible believing Christian. Many people do not know that, but she has been involved with a somewhat controversial Evangelical group called "The Fellowship." Along with Hillary is Barack Obama, who I believe will be her running mate. He too is an Evangelical Christian, having come to faith in the 1980s. He is not, contrary to urban legends, a Muslim.

What about on the Republican side? Rudy Guiliani is a Roman Catholic, John McCain is a Protestant, and Mitt Romney is Mormon. If elected, Mitt Romney would be the first non-Christian President in US History (note: whether the Mormon religion is considered Christian or non-Christian is subject to interpretation, but for sake of simplicity, let's just say the Mormonism is not within the boundaries of traditional, orthodox Christianity). Yet, Mitt Romney is probably more in line with the values of most Evangelical Christian than Rudy Guiliani.

It's just interesting to think about. I do think that there are some very good people running for President from both parties. While I do not agree with many of Hillary Clinton's policies, I believe that some of us in Christian community have unfairly demonized her. (And many on the left have done the same to President Bush).

For me personally, I won't vote simply based on the candidate's religion. I'm not going to endorse anyone on here, but I'll end up voting based on what I think the person will do as President.