By Elizabeth Tenety
Is God a Republican or a Democrat?
It seems that God has been speaking mostly to Republicans when it comes to the call to serve in public office.
Maybe the G.O.P does stand for God’s Own Party after all.
In an interview posted at the Faith & Freedom coalition website, former Christian Coalition leader Ralph Reed asked Sharron Angle, who won Nevada’s Republican Senate primary, about her rapid rise. Angle gave a spiritual answer to a political question:
Reed: Sharron, you really came, you know, maybe not out of nowhere, but from the back of the back of the pack to win the Republican primary here in Nevada. There’s a new poll out this week that shows you leading Harry Reid by seven or eight points. How do you explain all of this? You’re now a national story. Are you kind of overwhelmed by it all?
Sharon Angle: “Not really. I believe that God has been in this from the beginning and because of that, when he has a plan and purpose for your life and you fit into that what he calls you to, he’s always equipped people.”
God, if you believe His messengers, also spoke to Sarah Palin, George Bush and Norm Coleman, calling them to public office.
Should we take them at their word?
In Stephen Manfield’s ‘The Faith of George W. Bush,’ we learn that before his run for the presidency, Bush confided in evangelical leader James Robison about the vocation, saying: “I feel like God wants me to run for President. I can’t explain it, but I sense my country is going to need me. Something is going to happen… I know it won’t be easy on me or my family, but God wants me to do it.”
And an Associated Press story reported in January 2010 that “Sarah Palin believed that Sen. John McCain chose her to be his running mate in the 2008 presidential race because of ‘God’s plan,’ according to a top political strategist in the Arizona Republican’s campaign.”
During his 2008 campaign for Senate re-election (which he lost) Minnesota Senator Norm Coleman told a radio talk show host that “He starts every day with a prayer and that he knows ‘God wants me to serve.'”
Why God let Al Franken win Coleman’s seat is another matter.
Like many religious people, some politicians view their vocations through a spiritual lens. But in a pluralistic society, how should we interpret these claims?
What other politicians or leaders have you seen claim divine endorsement? How do you interpret their beliefs? Is God a Republican after all?