God after 2012: How did election change religion and politics landscape?

JOSHUA LOTT REUTERS A vote sign is displayed above a statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe during the U.S. presidential … Continued



A vote sign is displayed above a statue of Our Lady of Guadalupe during the U.S. presidential election in Phoenix, Arizona November 6, 2012. REUTERS/Joshua Lott (UNITED STATES – Tags: POLITICS USA PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION ELECTIONS RELIGION)

Tuesday’s election may have put an end to the ‘Mormon Moment,’ but for people of faith (and no faith), the results revealed new chasms in the religion and politics landscape.

With Romney’s defeat and same-sex marriage now legal in Washington, Maryland and Maine the social conservative movement is already in the process of surveying the damage. Faith leaders from Southern Baptist Seminary President Al Mohler to the conservative Catholics at National Catholic Register are evaluating what Mohler called “new moral landscape in America,” where the old religious norms are unpopular as public policy. LifeWay Research’s Ed Stetzer says that conservatives “must face the reality that we may be on the losing side of the culture war,” and many activists spent the week mulling over how to shift their political activism to a re-engagement with the culture.

Religious progressives too are taking a look at their new policy priorities –from addressing immigration reform to finding ways to deal with the deficit while protecting safety net programs they say protects the common good.

This week, I spoke with the Rev. Jim Wallis of Sojourners and Nick Stuart of Odyssey Networks about what Tuesday’s results mean for religious people and values across the spectrum. Watch the video of our conservation below.

Your Take: What did 2012’s election results teach us about the state of religion in politics today? Is there a new faith and values order?

More On Faith and 2012:

David Gibson: What’s next for religious conservatives?

Lisa Miller: After huge Hispanic vote, plenty of reason to compromise on immigration reform

Figuring Faith: Faith in 2012 by the numbers

Otterson: What lies ahead for Mormons?

Thistlethwaite: Compassion in chief: Why Obama won

Patel:Hopeful for explicit discussion from White House on religious diversity

Elizabeth Tenety
Written by


    Your god are the same as they were before the election – non-existent.


    (gods – plural)

  • mercydivine

    If only you opened your heart…ST. Paul pray for us….

  • Awake

    Better to forget about “God” and just practice generosity, kindness and good cheer. Otherwise it gets too confused.

  • salero21

    The Fundamental problem with the so called “christian right” is that it is NEITHER.

    Mostly catholics (read IDOLATERS), and Ecu-me-nicals, are in charge of that movement. Therefore is not all christian and is not all right. It is Syncretism at its worst. An Apostate conglomerate of different and sometimes contradictory beliefs systems. Mostly Legalistic, self-absorbed, self-adulatory, self-promoting and ignorant of the Grace of God and of the Scriptures..

  • DJWinMassachusetts

    Based on my own observations, I would disagree with the author’s statement that “old religious norms are unpopular as public policy.” I would argue instead that today’s social conservative movement does not represent any bona fide old religious norms. Here is just a small sample of what I find in the Bible:

    “And what does the LORD require of you?
    To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God.”
    (Micah 6:8)

    There’s much more like this. This is the real old-time religious norm, but it’s this kind of advice from God that today’s social conservatives do not wish to hear, apparently. If they would only listen to God speaking on behalf of the poor and the discouraged, they would find a welcome ear in the public policy arena.

  • freethinker

    If only you could open your mind…

  • AgentFoxMulder

    What does the term “social conservatives” mean? It is a broad term which can include religious, non-religious, republican, democrat, independent and tea party.

    Speaking strictly for myself as a Christian and a conservative, I’d say I have no illusions about where Western culture is heading. I’ve read the end of the The Book. But I don’t see it as my obligation to MAKE others vote as I would vote. I don’t believe legislating morality is possible.

    My only concern is speaking out against what I consider to be “the sins” of our nation. Abortion is an example. I also believe it is my duty to try to work in a positive way to to right such wrongs. Donating to, and volunteering in, a facility that offers alternatives to abortion, for example. And most importantly proclaiming the Gospel to anyone willing to hear it.

    Beyond that, I just hold on for the ride.

  • nvamikeyo

    Secularism and agnostic humanism will become the next great civil and human rights movement of this century. By the end of the 21st century religion will rapidly become an archaic relic of the past except in stubborn, isolated pockets of the world. Our grandchildren and great grandchildren will wonder why it took so long to shake off.

  • larryclyons

    True. You do not need God to be good.

  • larryclyons

    St. Paul pray for us? Why would I want a sexual deviant psychopath to pray for me? Frankly I prefer the way of Marcus Aurelius to Saul of Tarsus

    “Live a good life. If there are gods and they are just, then they will not care how devout you have been, but will welcome you based on the virtues you have lived by. If there are gods, but unjust, then you should not want to worship them. If there are no gods, then you will be gone, but will have lived a noble life that will live on in the memories of your loved ones.’”

  • James210

    i’ll never date another blonde as long as i live!!!
    so stop wagging that rock around. it’s not a club.

    personal just go with it.

  • jcluma

    There is no reason for religious people to change their values, practices, or day-to-day lives after this election. Some white christians might want a different political landscape but the separation of Church and State is a political foundation in America for a reason. Christians should continue on with their focus on faith and living according to their religious beliefs, period. This is the best and only way to strengthen themselves and our society.

  • FisConSocMod

    you will know a tree by the fruit that it bears. a good person is a godly person by virtue of their acts.


    It’s now hip to be a gay, dope dealin abortion provider-call it the immoral majority and much of the Demo platform most of us voted for! Says everything about us now and should finally draw the judgement of God like it has for thousands of years! Nothin new under the sun, the magnitude of our sin never fails to amaze me except that we call it progressive now!


    Correction: secularization of church and state now, except for the macro evolution faith movement taught to our kids as gospel with your tax dollars-you’re all animals, now act like it!


    Time Magazine interview with Einstein in his 50s:
    To what extent are you influenced by Christianity? “As a child I received
    instruction both in the Bible and in the Talmud. I am a Jew, but I am enthralled
    by the luminous figure of the Nazarene.”
    Do you accept the historical existence of Jesus? “Unquestionably! No one can
    read the Gospels without feeling the actual presence of Jesus. His personality
    pulsates in every word. No myth is filled with such life!”


    Take a look at a piece by pastor Chip Ingram out of Atlanta called “Why I believe” 1999 Living on the Edge in the archives-about 3-4 hours of very intellecually honest evidence for Christianity/Christ by a seasoned MS in Biology if you’re honestly searching for truth! Check out the light before you fall for the darkness! Thanks

  • nkri401

    Wild animals seems less greedy than human animal, JMO.


    Wow, christians LIE so much! Lucky it’s not against their reigion.


    I don’t need any of your hoodoo mumbo jumbo this week.

  • Kbg351

    Why cant religious people practice their own beliefs individually, and leave everyone else to their own paths.. Why this need to force everyone else to follow them….

  • Kbg351

    Why cant religious people practice their own beliefs individually, and leave everyone else to their own paths.. Why this need to force everyone else and others with variant beliefs to follow their chosen system..

  • Kbg351

    Why cant religious people practice their own beliefs individually, and leave everyone else to their own paths.. Why this need to force everyone else to follow them….

  • Kbg351

    Why cant religious people practice their own beliefs individually, and leave everyone else to their own paths.. Why this need to force everyone else to follow them….

  • MLK 2013: Holy Day of Inauguration

    God has Spoken: January 21, 2013 is-

    The President will be inagurated on the day that gives honor to God and His Prophet- The Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

    This Happens Once… It’s Happening Now.

    The God of Abraham, the God of Martin Luther King, Jr., DOES NOT CHANGE- It is so important for the custodians of prophecy to follow God and reveal to the masses especially in moments like these- what God is doing.

    The Prophet, Dr. King, clearly gave the prophecy that this day would come. His famous speech/prophecy 49 years ago, “I Have a Dream” and his final prophecy 44 years ago, “I’ve Seen the Promised Land” conveyed that God was going to deliver a day when we would see people in the image that God created us. He went on to say that the day would come when “we” (those who were not in the highest offices in our nation), would get to the promised land. IT HAPPENED in 2008 and it has been validated in 2012.

    Now, America must accept this new America that God has blessed with a return back to him in that we have embraced and accepted diversity at the highest office. Now that we have it right- WE MUST KEEP IT RIGHT! And this would be our job to preserve for the next generations. It must be a record of progress for our children’s children to know that we learned our lessons of what hate and discrimination can do to a people and how it can stagnate a nation. My prayer as a pastor, prophet, and lover of humankind is to join all who can see a constant God in a changing world.

    I say, don’t go to D.C. put this money in your community engagement stategies move forward in love, unity and reconciliation in your home state, convene at your state capital, your worship center and thank God for this Holy Day of Inauguration- Give Honor to the Prophet, Dr. King on his Federal “Holy” Day and challenge and strengthen all leaders to begin again on this day with the solemn assembly of our nation and declare ourselves again to be truly, ONE NATIO

  • Catken1

    Aww, poor dear, are you having to live with a country that condones horrible sins like gay people having loving families and women treated as humans rather than incubating machines?

    Maybe you should move someplace where you can start your own theocracy, rather than having to respect the civil rights of sinners…

  • Catken1

    Yes, DRJJJ, and we also teach the abominable theory of gravity and the horrible sinful belief that 2+2=4, too.
    If you can come up with actual evidence against evolution, persuasive enough to convince real scientists, you could get a Nobel Prize. Why don’t you try?

  • Catken1

    I also suppose you work to right the wrong of your own right to choose to deny another the use of your body, at the cost of their life?
    After all, it would be hypocrisy to work to save lives by co-opting other people’s bodies, resources, and internal organs against their will without offering the same yourself, wouldn’t it?

    Maybe you could offer equal time and energy to a facility that offers alternatives to men hoarding their blood and internal organs for themselves, too, when sharing could save SO many lives…after all, it’s wrong to act as if your body is your own, and you have the right to choose who may or may not use it, isn’t it?

    Or is it just wrong to treat women as whole human beings rather than property?


    I’m thinking that if christians like DRJJJ like to lie about so many things, they’re probably lying about the jesus and god things, too.

  • Rongoklunk

    As far as we know there are no gods and never were any. The 3500 gods our ancestors invented strongly suggests that Allah, Vishnu, Hari Krishna and your unamed God are just as mythical as all the others. Science does not recognize the supernatural, or invisible flying thingies; and the only brain that accepts the the God hypothesis is the child’s brain – who, once indoctrinated as children are religious for life, even though there are no gods.

    And 9/11 showed us that religious thinking is nothing to be proud of – it makes folks do the craziest most irrational things. Science prefers truth over faith everytime.

  • Rongoklunk

    Better than faith – is the desire to know – to find out rather than settling for the ancient God-hypothesis, which defies commonsense, thus making it most unlikely. It is understandable that ancient folks in their overwhelming ignorance would believe in ghosts and gods and goblins and all manner of invisible spiritual thingies hovering around them. But we know better now. Such things do not actually exist outside of the imagination. And the only way that the god-hypothesis can enter the imagination is through childhood indoctrination. The adult brain can only reject such an absurd possibility.

  • Rongoklunk

    The fact that people generally believe deeply in whatever they were raised to believe – says a tremendous amount about the accidental acquisition and questionable validity of religious belief.
    It is not acquired by an individual because of its persuasive argument. or its “truths” – but totally depends on which culture the individual was born into. An accident of birthplace if you will. And we all succumb to it. I know that if I had been born and raised in Utah to be a Mormon, then today I would be a Mormon. If I’d been born in Pakistan to a Muslim family, today I would be a Muslim…maybe even a terrorist. Why should I expect to be any different from other people who were raised to be that way. If I’d been raised to be a Catholic then today I would be a Catholic. If raised in the South to be a Southern Baptist then today I would be a Southern Baptist. If raised by Scientologists I would grow up to believe the Scientologist message. That’s how it works. We are what we were raised to be (with obvious exceptions of course). And what we were raised to be is usually nothing to do with truth, but more to do with location.

  • JustaDiver

    So… I was raised to ‘believe” in atheism. how then do you rationalize my unexpected conversion to Christianity at the age of 45?


    Organic brain damage?

  • freethinker

    You can not rationalize the irrational… What you are doing is similar to saying you were raised to believe the earth is round but now you have come to believe it is really flat!

  • freethinker

    If there is one thing this election settled, it’s that we are certainly not one nation united under a god. Whatever god is, it is a great divlder of this nation…and the peoples of the world.