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Trading barbs about who is and who is not a decent human being and a good Christian, Kentucky Senate candidates Rand Paul and Jack Conway, demonstrated how NOT to mix religion and politics. Politcs Daily Editor-in-Chief, Melinda Henneberger captured the moment as follows:
Right out of the gate last night, Paul pretended that this was an attack on him as a Christian: “Those who stoop to the level of attacking a man’s religious beliefs to gain higher office, I believe that they should remember that it does not profit a man to gain the world if he loses his soul in the process,” Paul lectured his opponent, quoting from Scripture…Not to be outdone, Conway also behaved as though the relevant question really did involve the Bowling Green eye doctor’s spiritual life; instead of noting that men raised other than by wolves don’t for any reason tie up women who aren’t in on the plan, the Moses of Frankfort tried to cast the incident as evidence that Paul worships false Gods: “Why did he freely join a group known for mocking, for making fun of people with faith?” Conway asked during the debate. “When is it ever a good idea to tie up a woman and ask her to kneel before a false idol, your god, which you call Aqua Buddha?”
Instead of debating issues over which they would have real influence, if elected, Paul and Conway raced to the bottom of personal attack and religious critique. Possible responses?
They are both fools, or the electorate is.
If last night’s sermonizing “works” i.e. persuades voters in one direction or the other, then shame on the voters. Hopefully though, it’s the candidates who miscalculated and each of their offices will receive messages from their respective supporters, telling the two candidates to get to work.
We are two weeks away from very important elections in this country and there are real and important differences between many of the candidates – especially these two. But if the best they can do is use God and religion to shame and embarrass each other, then it may not matter who wins, since they are both losers.