Steven Waldman: 2004 Convention Blog

Beliefnet Editor-in-Chief Steven Waldman writes daily dispatches from the 2004 political conventions.

"FROM BEYOND THE STARS"ABORTION IN THE PLATFORMFAITH-BASED MENTIONMISSING MARY CHENEY?EGAN'S REBUTTALANN COULTER, OVERHEARDWOODROW W. BUSH?CROSS ON PODIUM?MEAN BUTTONSRIGHTEOUS BUTTONSZELL'S FAITHCHENEY ON EVILWHO REALLY SET BUSH ON THE RIGHT PATH?SECULAR GOP?DENY ARNOLD?GIULIANI THANKS GODBORN AGAIN VS. ONCE-BORN

"A Calling from Beyond the Stars"

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Bush is to God-talk what Clinton was to policy-talk and Michael Phelps is to swimming. He's the master, the best. Though he occasionally stumbles, for the most part, there is no one better at discussing faith in a way that is both inspiring and non-threatening. In sheer number of words, he actually spoke about faith less in his acceptance speech than Kerry did in his. But when he did, it was powerful. Instead of saying directly that we have divine mandate to fight for freedom in the world, he said "we have a calling from beyond the stars to stand for freedom."



In talking about the mothers of soldiers who died, he said, "And I have met with parents and wives and husbands who have received a folded flag, and said a final goodbye to a soldier they loved. I am awed that so many have used those meetings to say that I am in their prayers to offer encouragement to me."

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