Steven Waldman

Steven Waldman

Why Evangelicals Will Never Abandon Palin No Matter What Comes Out

Virtually nothing can come out that will dissuade evangelicals from adoring Sarah Palin. No, I’m not accusing them of being ingorant or “easily led.” But the dynamics of how this is playing out make it extremely unlikely they’ll fallout of love with her, even in the face of evidence that sh’es not actually a reformer.
I say this for a few reasons. First, a point of comparison. When Barack Obama came on the scene, many people didn’t love him, they loved the idea of him — an inspirational, reform-minded African-American. But many also knew that whlie he made a good first impression, it might be an illusion. Over the course of 19 months, he was roughed up, interviewed hundreds of times, participated in scores of debates, and challenged by another Democrat, Hillary Clinton. At the end of the day, voters took their measure of the man and decided he was for real.
Sarah Palin starts out much as Barack obama did – with many voters in love with the idea of her. But there will apparently be very few interviews and just one debate – which means that most of the vetting will be done by the media. But most evangelicals are convinced that the mainstream media is biased against them; so they don’t trust it. And issues raised by opponents will be viewed as attacks on a Christian, not as an attack on a politician. It’s an impenetrable shield. Christians have been fed a steady diet for years of articles, book and TV programs proving that the media hates Christinas and will do anything to mock them (and the media provides just enough evidence to feed the view). The more dirt – even accurate dirt – that’s thrown at her, the more Christians will believe she’s being attacked for her faith.
In a primary, you’ve partial advantage that some of those who are raising questions are members of the same political party who you’ve worked with in the past. You trust them in ways that Christians simply cannot and will not trust the New York Times.
It’s also important to understand WHY Christians love her. It’s not because she’s a reformer, so if that turns out to be untrue (as seems increasingly the case), it really wont matter. It’s that she’s a Christian and did a handful of extremely important Christian things – refusing to have or counsel for an abortion when she became pregnant with a Downs Syndrome child and when her teen daughter became impregnated. This combined with the fact that she’s a serious member of a Bible-based church makes her something evangelicals have been waiting for: an appealing, young, evangelical who seem to live her faith.
In that sense, the only two facts about her life that will really matter to evangelicals about her are the two abortions she didn’t have as a result of her Christian faith. As long as those two facts remain true, nothing else will dent her reputation.
This is why I wrote hours after the selection that the Palin pick may be great for evangelicals – but it’s also a huge risk.

Comments read comments(5)
post a comment

posted September 8, 2008 at 10:04 pm

You’re right. There is, of course, precedent for this — evangelicals’ loyalty to George W. Bush despite ineptitude, corruption, deceit and malfeasance. He opposed same-sex marriage — say no more.

report abuse

Sad American

posted September 9, 2008 at 6:42 am

Unfortunately, you are right! It’s a sad commentary on the state of our nation, but it is the truth.

report abuse

Scared American

posted September 9, 2008 at 1:11 pm

Since when did Jesus support christians to run for any
Roman political office?
The idea of having a “nut-case” like Palin in high political office
is starting to scare a lot of American’s.

report abuse


posted September 10, 2008 at 12:17 pm

Not all Christians lover her. Some of us actually care about what our leaders do.
I guess lying is ok if you are a “Christian” — o wait nope Jesus told us not to lie.
Also I thought all 4 people for Pres/VP were Christian or are you trying to say that not having an abortion and going to church trumps everything.
I thought that Mark 16:16 said that believe in Christ was enough which means that Obama,Biden,McCain, and Palin are Christian.
I think what you are really saying is certain Christians will love her.
Its because of this thinking that some people are calling themselves Christ Followers now.
Oh Younger Evangelicals are not happy with Palin so there is some hope.
Appearently they are appauled by her behavior(lying for those that don’t understand).

report abuse


posted September 11, 2008 at 2:10 am

In the end of the campaign, those that are the Lord’s will not vote McCain-Palin. The Lord says that “My sheep hear my voice.” I am convinced and have much faith in His Word. It is IMPOSSIBLE for them to win.
Plus, God’s Word cannot return void. CANNOT! To see why, please see what the Lord sent to “His” people at If link doesn’t open here or it says Under Construction (it’s not). please type w w w dot NOBA Q DOT COM in your browser. May the Lord reveal to you this truth ASAP. Much work is ahead of us.
His ambassador

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

More Blogs To Enjoy!
Thank you for visiting this page. This blog is no longer being updated. Please enjoy the archives. Here are some other blogs you may also enjoy: Top Religious News Most Recent Inspiration Post Happy Reading! ...

posted 6:00:22pm Apr. 20, 2012 | read full post »

Good Bye
Today is my last day at Beliefnet (which I co-founded in 1999). The swirling emotions: sadness, relief, love, humility, pride, anxiety. But mostly deep, deep gratitude. How many people get to come up with an idea and have rich people invest ...

posted 8:37:24am Nov. 20, 2009 | read full post »

"Steven Waldman Named To Lead Commission Effort on Future of Media In a Changing Technological Landscape" (FCC Press Release)
STEVEN WALDMAN NAMED TO LEAD COMMISSION EFFORT ON FUTURE OF MEDIA IN A CHANGING TECHNOLOGICAL LANDSCAPE FCC chairman Julius Genachowski announced today the appointment of Steven Waldman, a highly respected internet entrepreneur and journalist, ...

posted 11:46:42am Oct. 29, 2009 | read full post »

My Big News
Dear Readers, This is the most difficult (and surreal) post I've had to write. I'm leaving Beliefnet, the company I co-founded in 1999. In mid November, I'll be stepping down as President and Editor in Chief to lead a project on the future of ...

posted 1:10:11pm Oct. 28, 2009 | read full post »

"Beliefnet Co-Founder and Editor-in-Chief Steps Down to Lead FCC Future of the Media Initiative" (Beliefnet Press Release)
October 28, 2009 BELIEFNET CO-FOUNDER AND EDITOR-IN-CHIEF STEPS DOWN TO LEAD FCC FUTURE OF THE MEDIA INITIATIVE New York, NY - October 28, 2009 - Beliefnet, the leading online community for inspiration and faith, announced today that Steven ...

posted 1:05:43pm Oct. 28, 2009 | 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.