Keeping the Faith

After the 2004 election, political pundits credited the religious right with ushering George W. Bush into office. Adherents to the culture war thesis—that political conflict results from the conflicting values of traditionalists and progressives—view the intensifying conservatism of evangelical Christians over the past two decades as responsible for the election of other anti-stem cell research, antichoice, anti-gay marriage candidates.

The subtle message underlying these debates is that people’s religions and their politics are inextricably intertwined. But we ought to consider whether it’s really that simple, whether religion really is a proxy for political views (or vice versa)