Fighting Fire With Fire

The Alabama Christian Coalition has some competition:

The voter guide from the former Christian Coalition of Alabama won’t be the only one distributed in churches before the election Nov. 7. There will be a new one that is already causing a split along party lines. Redeem the Vote, a Montgomery-based group that registered thousands of religious voters in 2004, plans to distribute what it calls an “alternative voter guide” on races for statewide offices and the Legislature.

It will list candidates’ responses to a questionnaire about issues of faith, rather than highlighting their responses to hot button issues like taxes.

“Voters of faith are tired of shrill partisanship and are weary of wedge issues. However, a voter guide that gives a real glimpse into the heart and decision-making process of a candidate is a truer and fairer measurement of a candidate’s moral position,” the founder, Dr. Randy Brinson, said.

The new questionaire is here. It’s twelve questions:

1.What role has your faith played in who you are today and why you are seeking elective office, be specific?

2.Where is your place of worship and have you served in any lay ministries or leadership roles there or elsewhere?

3.Politicians often get labeled…liberal, moderate, conservative, democrat, republican etc. If you had a chance to dispense with those titles and choose a title or label to tell us what best defines your faith and value system, what label would it be, and why – be creative?

4.In light of your faith…on election night if you are declared the winner, what is the most heartfelt statement you would make to your opponent? Or, if on election night you are the loser, what will be the most heartfelt statement you will make to the winner? (assume your opponent is a fellow believer and the race was hard fought)

5.If you were to win this office, what role and process will your faith play in helping you develop a solution to a specific problem or develop a complex public policy?

6.Aside from politics, what can you tell us about your service to your local community, what capacities have you served? Tell us about your family.

7.What does the term “family and moral values” mean to you and what life events in your marriage or as a child or parent have shaped your views on the family?

8.What is your favorite bible verse and why? And what biblical character do you think most resembles you in your walk of faith?

9.How has prayer made a difference in your life, and what would you like to request to fellow believers as a ‘prayer request’ for you personally?

10.Humility and a sense of service, ethics, and accountability are essential to being a successful elected official. What life event, life practice or life habit do you possess that will assure us that if elected, you will remain a humble, ethical, accountable servant of the people?

11.In the New Testament, Jesus stated ‘render to Caesar that which is Caesar’s and to God that which is God’s’. The bible also tells believers to respect the authority of government; however, to also ‘let your light so shine among men’. How will you attempt to publicly acknowledge your faith while obeying the laws of men?

12.What final comment would you like to leave us with as we prayerfully consider the choices before us?

They certainly look open ended, and don’t appear to favor one party over the other. Nevertheless, you can guess how Twinkle and her little right hand religion man John Giles reacted to the questionnaire:

The chairman of the Alabama Republican Party, Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh, has the opposite view of Redeem the Vote.

She calls Brinson “a Democrat propaganda machine” who “meets constantly with Democratic leaders on the national and state levels,” and she is encouraging Republican candidates not to respond to the questionnaire.

John Giles, president of Christian Action Alabama (formerly known as the Christian Coalition of Alabama), calls Brinson “the face card of the Alabama Education Association and the trial lawyers.”

Sure. A “Democrat propoganda machine” with Arkansas Governor Mike Huckabee as the Chairman of its National Advisory Committee. There is this too:

[The attitude of Twinkle and Giles is] a big change from 2004, when Republicans were praising Brinson’s group for helping President Bush by registering 100,000 voters nationwide through concerts by Christian music acts and other events. Brinson’s name was soon popping up in Washington political stories as a new voice among religious conservatives.

And don’t forget the astoundingly bald hypocracy. Satan and Beelzebub Twinkle and Giles know all about partisan manipulation of religion. Compare their questionnaire to Brinson’s. After so doing, no further argument is needed. The partisan nature of the Giles/Twinkle questionnaire is patent. For them to criticize someone else on these grounds is outrageous. Truly these two have no shame. They don’t even pretend to be honest any more.

None of this is to say Brinson’s questionnaire is an inherently good idea. My vote is always for less God-talk in politics.  

However, sometimes during a closing argument one of the attorneys will say something improper. Maybe insult opposing counsel, or refer to facts that were not introduced into evidence. When that happens, the other attorney is allowed to respond in kind, even if that response itself would normally be improper. The appellate court will often call the response “invited error” or something similar.

That’s what Brinson’s questionnaire is. In a perfect world, I would never want to see it. But in a political world poisoned by people like Twinkle and Giles, it may serve a worthwhile purpose.

Explore posts in the same categories: Elections, God and government, Goobers

3 Comments on “Fighting Fire With Fire”

  1. Will Says:

    From what I’ve heard, the GOP candidates were never even sent this questionnaire, so they didn’t have a chance to see it, much less respond. It would be interesting to see if Twinkle just made that decision for them, or if Mr. Brinson just didn’t care to even ask them for their responses.

  2. randy Says:

    By the way, the republican party was sent a letter certified return receipt, and they still told everyone not to respond… but then we sent an email to everyone of the republican candiates and several candidates did agree to respond

  3. […] Alabama’s dueling questionnaires are number seven. Explore posts in the same categories: Elections, Goobers, God and government […]

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