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|NOVEMBER 4, 1998
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
CONTACT: The Interfaith Alliance
Amber Khan 202-639-6370 Ext. 106 or Pager 1-888-941-9614
|Leaders of the Religious Right Are On the Run; Randy Tate and Gary Bauer Accept No Responsibility|
November 4 - Following the press conferences held by the Christian Coalition and Campaign
for Working Families, Rev. Welton Gaddy,
executive director of The Interfaith Alliance released the following statement.
This morning leaders of the Religious Right distanced themselves from their public record and most importantly from candidates who followed their electoral advice. Christian Coalition Executive Director Randy Tate and Campaign for Working Families' and presidential aspirant Gary Bauer blamed Republican leaders for advancing the very issues recommended by their organizations. Their advice backfired and today they refuse to take responsibility for the consequences.
While castigating the Republicans for focusing on the scandal, both Tate and Bauer failed to acknowledge their own preoccupation with the President's problems. Looking at the record, both organizations invested heavily in media campaigns calling for the President's resignation. At their Road to Victory conference in September, Christian Coalition leaders Pat Robertson and Randy Tate urged their activists to use the scandal and "morality" as the mobilizing issues to reenergize their base. They can't have it both ways.
This morning both Bauer and Tate said, "Issues matter." They are right: issues do matter. Both conservative and moderate voters rejected the narrow agenda of the Religious Right. Clear distinctions between the candidates existed on issues such as mandatory prayer in school, campaign finance reform and support for public education. Those candidates who touted the narrow agenda espoused by Bauer and Tate paid a price at the polls.
In sharp contrast, candidates from both parties who reached beyond the Religious Right's narrow agenda captured the support of diverse voters across the nation, including self-described conservative Christians. Indeed this election did turn out to be a referendum on values. The American people continue to value moderation, inclusion, and civility.
Dr. Welton Gaddy is the author of Faith and Politics and Executive Director of The Interfaith Alliance (TIA), a non-partisan centrist organization of Muslims, Jews, Christians and other faith traditions dedicated to promoting the positive and healing role of religion in public life transcending the traditional left/right political spectrum. With a membership of 80,000 and a grassroots network of 112 clergy-led alliances across the country, TIA is encouraging people of faith and goodwill to be involved in civic life to promote civility, mutual respect and cooperation.
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