James Dobson’s Invitation to McCain

dobson6.jpgHere’s what James Dobson said about John McCain early last month:

Should Sen. McCain capture the nomination as many assume, I believe this general election will offer the worst choices for president in my lifetime. I certainly can’t vote for Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama based on their virulently anti-family policy positions. If these are the nominees in November, I simply will not cast a ballot for president for the first time in my life.

Now, Dobson’s changing his tune. Focus on the Family action just sent a “special alert” to its backers, with a subject line that retracts Dobson’s vow to stay home come Election Day: “Dr. Dobson: ‘I Will Certainly Vote’.” Here’s what the alert says:


Dr. James Dobson told Sean Hannity on Sunday night he is going to vote in the November election – ending weeks of speculation that he would sit on the sidelines over his policy disagreements with the two major parties’ candidates for the White House.

Weeks of speculation that he would sit on the sidelines? That wasn’t speculation. That’s what Dobson said. The special alert continues:

On Hannity’s America on the Fox News Channel, Dr. Dobson told his longtime friend he definitely plans to cast a ballot this year.
“Let me just say that I will certainly vote, Sean,” he said. “I think we have a God-given responsibility to vote, and there are all of the candidates and the issues down the ballot that we have an obligation to weigh in on and let our voices be heard.”
Dr. Dobson, speaking as a private citizen and not as a representative of Focus on the Family, as he always does when discussing political candidates, added that he “has problems” with all three major presidential contenders, especially the Democrats.
As for John McCain, Dr. Dobson responded with a question of his own when Hannity said he had received assurances from the Arizona senator that he would keep the pro-life and pro-marriage planks in the GOP’s party platform.
“Did he give you a commitment about embryonic stem-cell research?” Dr. Dobson asked.
“We did not get that,” Hannity replied.
“But that’s an important one for me,” Dr. Dobson explained. “And you can’t really call yourself pro-life if you’re in favor of killing those babies.”
Dr. Dobson said he would not elaborate on how he would vote in November. He has said that he and his wife, Shirley, chairman of the National Day of Prayer Task Force, have been and will continue to pray that God’s will be reflected in the outcome of the election.


This is an invitation from Dobson to John McCain to win his backing (perhaps unenthusiastic backing, but hey, it’s better than outright opposition) by rescinding his support for expanded federal funding for embryonic stem cell research. From its chats with various leading lights of the Christian Right, God-o-Meter knows the embryonic stem cell issue has emerged as the biggest sticking point between the movement and McCain. How much of this is because the Christian Right feels that last year’s scientific breakthrough allowing skin cells to be reprogrammed to mimic embryonic stem cells gives their ailing anti-embryonic stem cell research cause new life? Quite a bit.
It’s that breakthrough that could also give McCain the political wiggle room to change his tune on embryonic stem cell research without being tarred a bald-faced flip flopper. But the Christian Right has been pressing McCain to dial back is support for more federally-funded embryonic stem cell research for months, and McCain hasn’t blinked. Let’s see if that changes this week.


Comments read comments(26)
post a comment

posted March 31, 2008 at 4:30 pm

Not to excuse McCain. But what does Dobson propose to do with all the embryos frozen at fertility clinics? Does he propose to implant the thousands of embryos into female volunteers? Does he propose a mass Christian burial? Does he just intend to let the embryo’s stay frozen until the freezer malfunctions and they all thaw-out & die?
Until Dobson gives an answer to what is to be done with the thousands of frozen embryo’s, he does not have a lot of room to judge others.
It is interesting that Dobson’s original candidate (Romney) and McCain have the policy for the embryonic stem cell issue.

report abuse

Dan R.

posted March 31, 2008 at 5:54 pm

The very reason that McCain is running ahead in the polls right now in a year in which everything points to a Democrat being elected president is PRECISELY because he has refused to kiss the butts of the “American Taliban” on the “Christian Right”. 90% of Dobson’s people will vote for McCain in the general election no matter what Dobson says because, in the end, while they may not consider himn a perfect candidate, he’s light years better than either Hillary or Obama. But if McCain tacks to the right in order to “win Dobson’s backing” he will alienate a lot of the voters in the political middle without whom he cannot win in November.
The fact that he hasn’t endorsed McCain only confirms by belief that the GOP did indeed nominate the right man.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 5:57 pm

It’s good to see that at least Dobson isn’t still barking about McCain’s use of swear words.
I seriously can’t think of a less legitimate reason not to vote for someone than saying that they use “dirty language.”
Is Dobson not aware that the two individuals he whole-heartedly supported in 2000 & 2004 (Bush & Cheney) both swear like sailors?
Dobson needs to understand that he’s trying to elect the next president, not the next deacon in his chuch. I realize McCain doesn’t line up completely with his belief, but Dobson needs to grow a pair. McCain will be the only anti-abortion candidate in the race, and he’s going to vote against him because he doesn’t want to ban embryonic stem cell research?
Dobson sounds like he’s trying to kill his own movement…

report abuse

Today is not yesterday.

posted March 31, 2008 at 6:39 pm

James Dobson is more like one of the Apostles or Disciples of Christ Jesus, than any other person in position of influence in our world today. There is no place where the rabid leftist can find fault in this man “if” he is tested by New testament scripture. Dobson’s position is simple, no Christian should “yoke” themself to an unbeliever or a brother or sister “in Christ” who is in great error. That Dobson sides with conservative Republicans shows his decent grasp of Gospel and Apostolic truth. Tax collectors, false religious leaders, corrupt politicians and murderers were not role models for the Apostles (who were taught by Jesus) and neither should they be for Christians today. Dobson has shown that he is worthy of trust.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 7:03 pm

Please explain to me why Dobson was for Romney and not Huckabee. From where I sit, Huckabee supported straight down the line, Dobson’s Christian positions. Romney was pro-choice, pro-gay, until he decided to run for President in the Republican primary. How this lines up with Dr. Dobson’s principles just absolutely escapes me. It appears to me that Dr. Dobson sold out to have a “winner” over his principles. So now he wants to have some respect?
Explain it to me.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 8:05 pm

Dr. Dobson is a very good man that has sent his life to protect family values. If you have ever heard his passion for the family, you wouldnot doubt his intensions are honorable!

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 8:41 pm

Are you kidding me?
“Dr. Dobson, speaking as a private citizen and not as a representative of Focus on the Family, as he always does when discussing political candidates”… yeah and when George W. Bush comments on things he does so as a private citizen and not a representative as the President of the US, or Bill Gates comments as he does so as a private citizen, not the founder and leader of Microsoft… sure, whatever. James Dobson is a joke.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 8:58 pm

“Christian Taliban”, just because Dr. Dobson and other Christian leaders call for morality in our personal lives and ethical standards in scientific research? I daresay Dr. Dobson has rarely (read never)called for amputation of limbs for stealing, stoning for sexual immorality, flogging for any number of crimes, or any number of other Koranic or Old Testament proscriptions for “sin”. James Dobson at least has the conviction of his beliefs. Are we electing a pastor-in-chief? No, but we should at least be comfortable with the morality of our leaders. If that makes us hypocrites because we fail to live up to the standards of our critics, then so be it. Dr. Dobson is merely trying to make sure that his candidate will not leave those with qualms about fetal research (those who acknowledge that a developing fetus is, ultimately, a child) in the lurch for the votes of those who might benefit from such research.

report abuse

Paul Shiras

posted March 31, 2008 at 9:19 pm

Has Dr. Dobson taken a stand on Universal Health, the disparity of the wages of the working class and inflation, the mass exodus of jobs in America or the massive debt to the greatest human rights violator China? Christians need to be aware that there is more to being for Christ than just the gay agenda and abortion. If Dr. Dobson has more to say regarding other issues that effect Christians in America, I will listen but all I have heard from him over the years is this one-horse buggy.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 9:33 pm

James Dobson started off Focus on the Family as an agent of change to help Christians realize that Psychology is not of the Devil and we can gain a lot of insight from it to help us build stronger families based on Biblical principles. I have a great deal of respect for the work he did in the 70’s and 80’s.
Sadly, as Focus on the Family got larger and Dobson’s view of himself grew, he tread into politics where he is absolutely clueless and has shed any pretense of principle for the lure of being a power player. 30 years ago, it was Dobson who helped out-of-touch Christians get with reality, but today it is Dobson who has lost touch with reality.
Dobson has gotten lost in identity politics which seeks a “Christian” over a man of integrity. This was our error in supporting Bush these past 8 years and the country has paid for our short-sightedness. I’m proud we’ve nominated a man like McCain and hope this is a step away from the Dobson-style identity politics.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 9:35 pm

Come on, read what you wrote there:
“If these are the nominees in November, I simply will not cast a ballot for president for the first time in my life.”
Then he says, “I will certainly vote… there are all of the candidates and the issues down the ballot that we have an obligation to weigh in on and let our voices be heard.”
There is simply no contradiction there. He’s saying he’ll go out and vote, but he’ll leave the checkbox for President empty.
How is this difficult to understand?

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 9:41 pm

John McCain has a real opportunity to unite the entire evangelical movement behind him by picking Mike Huckabee as his VP. It would also unite the social conservatives to his party. I am planning to vote for John McCain, but might change if he picks Mitt Romeny or Rudy Guilani for VP – two people who have supported abortion and other far left social conservative issues in the past. His VP choice is important as this person would be close to him and would most likely have an influence on many important issues. Mike is also someone who has shown he draws support from minorities and appeared at the debates, when others like Romeny would not appear, put on by black leaders. Dr. Dobson has had a great influence on how we raised our children successfully and I thank him for that.
BTW: It was not Dr. Dobson who supported Romney, it was Tony Perkins from the Family Research Council in D.C.

report abuse


posted March 31, 2008 at 11:00 pm

I think Jimmy can take a hike. If he thinks he can change the world run for office. He would not be elected dog catcher. Sorry Jimmy.

report abuse

Mike R.

posted March 31, 2008 at 11:55 pm

I don’t get this “Give me everything I want or I’ll take my ball and go home!” mentality. Honestly, many conservatives are acting like petulant six-year-olds. If evangelical voters sit on the sidelines and help Obama get elected, they will bear the responsibility for the horrors perpetrated on the country by a Democrat President working with a Democrat Congress. They should remember that “All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.”

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 12:03 am

Dobson continues to worship at the altar of power and money. He epitomizes Mohandas Ghandi’s admonition: “I like your Christ. I do not like your Christians. Your Christians are so unlike your Christ.”

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 12:40 am

First, why would anyone listen to a rabid liar like Hannity? For that matter, why would any intelligent person listen to, or watch, Fox (fake) News? As for Dobson, he may be cleaner than, say, Jim Bakker or the really sleazy Crouches, but not much. Finally, how could anyone calling themselves “Christian” support someone like G.W. Bush, Dick “shotgun” Cheney or their war-monger, blood-for-oil friends? What ever happened to WWJD? Yes, folks, who would Jesus bomb? You Right-wingers can’t have it both ways—-Jesus and war don’t mix and you ought to stop trying to make it so. But, then, I haven’t seen too many “Christians” acting Christ-like for a very long time. OH, they claim to love Jesus and go to church every Sunday, but the rest of the time they act more like King Midas. SO, get out your Bible and check out “THOU SHALT NOT KILL” and then ask yourself why you continue to support people who are busy killing or having others kill for them (for oil and the money it begets)on a daily basis!

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 1:41 am

It is strang that christians would vote for war-mongering president three terms in a row. yet there are pro-life. An oxy moron? War and pro-life. War and anti-abortion? I am voting for Obama. I think he will be a great President. We can pray that he will do the right thing. No politician is our Lord and Savior. God and any President is the majority,and God alone is the majority. God is our only Savior. Dobson will always vote Republican,even if King kong was the candidate.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 2:02 am

I’m not all that fond of McCain either. I will vote for him, despite his hemming and hawing about stem cell research, because he is somewhat pro-life. But Dobson is correct — this is by far the worst field ever.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 2:16 am

I have listened and watched Hannity for years and James Dobson. They are both people who are honest,intelligent and care about this nation and their fellow man much more than the average liberal. Frankly, caring about human life is a basic building block for truly caring about all people and becoming selfless and helping others. I hope John McCain does reach out to the tens of millions of Americans that realize the importance of this moral individual belief, that is one of the threads that keeps this nation great and blessed by God. My Bible states: “You shall not murder”. Murder is different than war that roots out terrorists and protects a God fearing nation. I think liberals would be a lot more supportive of the war against terrorism if it was their family member or themself, who was having their innocent head decapitated or blown up in a market place by some fanatic claiming to slaughter innocents in the name of God. It amazes me how liberals cannot make the distinction between crazed fanatics who oppress their women to the point of murdering their own family members because they believe they have shamed the family and live in such a backward society that they stone people that are accused of crimes without a trial and arrange marriages for girls that are sometimes 9 years old, and Christians who regard the value of life so highly that they don’t want it destroyed even in the womb. I am glad our soldiers protect our freedom, even if it means people like Bob can spew his hate for Christians. Because if he made comments like this in many middle east nations against Islam, he would be in dead or in jail.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 4:28 am

I dislike gay rights and pro-abortion platforms, but when you look closely, there are other things candidates do that contribute worse to human life and disobedient of God’s word than these platforms. Wrong war can kill millions of people. Hate and racism are nuclear bombs. Fornication is a mass murder. Adultery is a perfect nuclear bomb. Divorce is horrifying and much more destructive in the long-run than all of them. After taking all factors and contingencies into consideration, one may have no choice but to vote for the best of three evils or three goods, whatever you choose to call them. The best is Obama for such a time as this in the American history. In fact, God has a hand in this man’s appearance on this presidential stage! God will use this man to heal America domestically and internationally. Shame to you so-called Christians who pretend to serve God but are really revenous wolves. Dear Americans, we better not fool ourselves this time!!! I am inviting Dobson to vote for Obama. Many a time we Christians stupidly make serious decision like “voting” based on myopic analysis. We better be serious this time.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 5:21 am

Strongblood, either you are a plant or woefully uninformed. If you truly believe in a social conservative agenda, why would you vote for a person who is not only pro-choice, but also voted against banning partial birth abortions? You say that hate and racism are nuclear bombs but endorse someone whose pastor damned America. Your last point makes me the most suspicious of your authenticity: “Many a time we Christians stupidly make serious decision like “voting” based on myopic analysis. We better be serious this time.” What Christian would ever think that being guided by faith is a myopic analysis? You must be a plant.
In either case, whether you are authentic or not… I respectfully disagree. Obama’s naiveté will in the end damage our country’s stability. Judgment does not mean pointing to an uninformed decision and calling it wisdom. As a member of the State Senate, without having access to national security briefs, without any information privy to those who actually made the decision, he opposed the action that lead up to the war. Yet once he was privy to that data as a US Senator, he voted to consistently support it. So, let’s look at his informed judgment. He admits that it was a “bone headed move” in having financial dealings with a known political fixer, Tony Rezko. He admits that he would have left his church if his pastor was not retiring; isn’t it political expedience to finally get around to having a stance after 20 years as a member?
I am not a social conservative, but I do give them their respect. Don’t ever think that they are stupid sheep who can be swayed by mere comments that contain hot button words such as “God’s word”, “fornication”, “God’s hand”, etc. Stick to what you know, argue the point and try not being clever.

report abuse

Uncle Sam

posted April 1, 2008 at 8:56 am

What often goes unnoticed in the political campaign is the issue of global terror that so many underestimate. We have not simply been lucky that there has been no terrorist attack on US soil since 9/11. It is due to our vigilance. John McCain sees the bigger picture and understands the need to continue to apply military pressure on Al-Qaeda in Iraq and the major supplier of terror, Iran. Removing our troops from Iraq right now may seem like the compassionate thing to do, but I believe that we will pay a much greater price in the future should we do so. The irony is that only the wise will truly appreciate the significance of this unpopular strategy in hindsight. It takes wisdom borne of faith and experience to read the signs correctly. Persons like John McCain, Joe Lieberman, Lindsey Graham and others have that wisdom. I pray that their voice wins the day.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 9:28 am

Here is the explanation: Dobson sold out to the secular conservatives, whose candidate was Romney.
After Thompson left the race after SC, there was only Romney, Huckabee, McCain. At that point, Huckabee was the only true social conservative, so it was Dobson’s responsibility to his followers to endorse Huckabee. This would have given Huckabee a much stronger showing in Florida, knocked Romney out after Florida. Instead after Florida, Dobson ridicules McCain and indicates that he cannot endorse Romney or Huckabee at that time because they both are social conservatives. (A cowardice act, as everyone should know that it was Romney that promulgated the Massachusetts gay marriage (first ever in the nation) as well as state paid $50 abortions.) (See:
So instead of needed financial support from the social conservatives, Huckabee has to limp into Super Tuesday on a shoe-string budget. Romney, steals votes from Huckabee. Huckabee loses Missouri to McCain by only 1%. Most of the Southern States were propotional delegates, meaning Romney stole delegates from Huckabee, which Huckabee needed to stay viable against McCain’s winner-take-all delegates.
Face it, Dobson is a politician that sold out to the secular conservatives (Limbaugh & Hannity), and essentially gave the nomination to McCain.
As the “leader” of the Social conservatives, it was Dobson’s responsibility to endorse Huckabee after South Carolina!

report abuse

recovering ex-Pentecostal

posted April 1, 2008 at 1:52 pm

Quite frankly, Dobson is a relic, an out-of-touch dinosaur. Who gives a rat’s patootie what his opinion is?
– –
“I dislike gay rights”
There’s no such thing. There’s only EQUAL rights, and in America, gays don’t have them – despite the ‘promise’ of the Constitution.

report abuse


posted April 1, 2008 at 3:48 pm

I am so amused at what Christians say. They come across so “all knowing”. In reality they know nothing other than what is encapsulated in their storybook and superstitions. But discussing issues of religion, “right and wrong” “sins” and what “Christ Says” is gibberish. Discussing Christian ideas and concepts coherently is like arguing whether The Three Bears were brown or black (we know Goldilocks was Blonde). It’s all a story so they can be any color since they didn’t exist in the first place except in their creator’s mind and that is is explicitly known Goldilocks was blonde.. Gays want EQUAL rights not “special or “gay” rights”. Taxation without representation otherwise and that’s what this country was founded upon.

report abuse


posted April 10, 2008 at 4:18 pm

“My Bible states: “You shall not murder”. Murder is different than war that roots out terrorists and protects a God fearing nation.”
I’m sorry, but we are far from a God fearing nation. We are not in Jerusalem where the WHOLE population submitted to the God of the Bible. We live in an America that is full of people who either practice a religion or practice none at all. We CANNOT expect EVERYONE in America to adhere to our Christian belief system. This is the cold, harsh reality.
As a Christian, I am deeply disappointed in how America is going about “the religion” thing. I respect Dobson, but I am also deeply embarrased by his approach to things. The President will NOT be our pastor. If people want to learn about Jesus, and learn to live HIS way, that is what CHURCH is for. The White House was NEVER meant to be a place to learn about the Bible, Jesus Christ, etc,.
I’d also like to add that just because a politician says he is against gay marriage and abortion, does NOT mean he is truly following Christ. Many of these politician will say and do whatever it takes to win the popular vote. Please keep this in mind before you vote for the next “Godly” candidate.
All I can say is, I hope we find some balance in this country.

report abuse

Post a Comment

By submitting these comments, I agree to the terms of service, rules of conduct and privacy policy (the "agreements"). I understand and agree that any content I post is licensed to and may be used by in accordance with the agreements.

Previous Posts

Closed for the Season
With Election Day finally having come and gone, God-o-Meter is closing up shop till 2012--or at least 2010. Till then, get your faith and politics fix over at Beliefnet editor-in-chief Steve Waldman's blog. 7 ...

posted 4:32:33pm Nov. 19, 2008 | read full post »

On The Religious Left, Great Expectations
The first priorities for Barack Obama's administration will be the economy and a variety of foreign policy issues. But the burgeoning religious left, which worked so hard to get Obama elected, expects some movement on its issues, including a ...

posted 1:49:31pm Nov. 07, 2008 | read full post »

Howard Dean's Vindication
God-o-Meter wrote a piece for today's Roll Call on the vindication of Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean's much-derided 50-State Strategy, which is largely about reaching out to the nation's more religious voters in the red ...

posted 2:01:06pm Nov. 06, 2008 | read full post »

A Post-Election Chat with Ralph Reed
Amid today's talk that Barack Obama has narrowed the God Gap, God-o-Meter checked in with Ralph Reed, who spearheaded religious outreach for George W. Bush's 2000 and 2004 campaigns and who pioneered such outreach for Republicans as executive ...

posted 3:09:07pm Nov. 05, 2008 | read full post »

More Innacurate Faith Storylines From the Media
God-o-Meter is struck by the number of faith-based storylines the news media appear to have gotten dead wrong this year. One was the line that Obama was poised to make big gains among white votes, especially evangelicals, who were undergoing a ...

posted 11:53:20am Nov. 05, 2008 | read full post »


Report as Inappropriate

You are reporting this content because it violates the Terms of Service.

All reported content is logged for investigation.