Saturday, December 12, 2015

Fea: "Have You Heard About the American Renewal Project?"

Check it out here. A taste:
I recently talked to Reuters journalist Michelle Conlin about David Lane and the American Renewal Project.  You can read her finished piece here.

The American Renewal Project is a network of 100,000 ministers and pastors (as far as I can tell they are mostly white, conservative evangelical, middle-aged men) who are trying to get 1000 pastors to run for office in 2016.

One look at the American Renewal Project website reveals that this is yet another wing of the Christian nationalist movement.  There are stories about revolutionary-era clergy who supported the American Revolution,  defenses of the idea that the United States was founded as a Christian nation, and discussions of pastors running for political office to "save the soul" of America.  Lane is a Christian Right activist who believes that we need to "wage war to restore a Christian America."  His use of history comes straight out of the David Barton playbook.  In fact, Barton is a supporter of this movement.


Tom Van Dyke said...

Good for them---evangelicals are American citizens too.

As for the reporter's concern about the tax implications of politics and the pulpit, it never fails to amuse that when it's a black church and support for Democrats, never is heard a discouraging word.

As for trying to tar this movement with David Barton, something more than innuendo and guilt-by-association is called for here.

Jonathan Rowe said...

I thought Fea's research (which I didn't excerpt) on colonial laws against ministers holding office was interesting.

Tom Van Dyke said...

Yes, some of those laws are still on the books, I believe, as are religious tests for statewide office. Of course neither could survive 14th Amendment scrutiny.