This past week there were two bills the religious evangelical community had weighed in on.Â OneÂ it wanted passed, the other defeated. They lost both.
One was better known, the “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell” repeal.Â Evangelicals pulled out all the stops on that one. But they lost anyway.Â It seemed as if the members of Congress just did not care what this once powerful group told them.
The other was a more positive effort, passage of the “Dream Act.”Â This was a bill to allow young people who were children of illegal aliens to obtain citizenship.Â Several evangelical and mainline churches joined forces to pass the bill.Â But again to no avail.
It is, of course, a stretch to say these two events represent a clear signal that the religious right has lost its politcal influence.Â Perhaps it has not at all.Â Or, perhaps it did not have as much as conventional wisdom assumed it had back in its heyday.Â
What is does illustrate, I think, is the uneasy dance that goes on constantly with politicans and the religious community.Â Popes and Kings did the same thing a long time ago. Experience has shown that neither should think the other will go very far outside its comfort zone to help.Â
In my view, the more suspious politicians are of religious leaders, and visa versa, the better off our countryÂ will be.