Is It Really The Fundies?

Kathleen Parker doesn’t want to get on the boat:

Three little letters, great big problem: G-O-D.

I’m bathing in holy water as I type.

To be more specific, the evangelical, right-wing, oogedy-boogedy branch of the GOP is what ails the erstwhile conservative party and will continue to afflict and marginalize its constituents if reckoning doesn’t soon cometh.

Simply put: Armband religion is killing the Republican Party. And, the truth — as long as we’re setting ourselves free — is that if one were to eavesdrop on private conversations among the party intelligentsia, one would hear precisely that.

The choir has become absurdly off-key, and many Republicans know it.

Ya know, this has become pretty common conventional wisdom, but I’m not entirely sure what the evidence is. Far be it from me to defend the religous right, but at the end of the day it just doesn’t seem accurate to lay the blame for the GOP’s woes at their feet, mostly because they’re just not that relevant.

For example, a majority of voters are generally supportive of Roe and similar pro-choice positions, but in exit polls abortion rarely shows up in the list of “most important issues,” and most evidence suggests that voters who do make decisions based primarily on aborton are laregly religious right voters. In other words, Iraq, healthcare, education, taxes, etc. are just more important than abortion to the vast majority of voters when they make decisions. And as far as gay marriage goes, with Prop 8 passing in California and ahandful of gay marriage bans passing elsewhere, it seems rather hard to say that the GOP is really out of the current mainstream on that issue.

Now I don’t know if this has much relevance to Democrats, and I wouldn’t mind further marginalizing of the religious right by any means, but it seems like we ought to at least be honest with ourselves about the political landscape.