Paul Cooper

NewsReal Sunday: Should Evangelicals be allowed to govern? Chris Matthews doubts it.

Posted on September 6 2009 4:00 pm
Paul Cooper is a husband and father above all else. With a wife and 2 daughters he could use a dog, but sadly he only owns a cat – a female cat no less. Paul is also a pastor, blogger, and business owner. Find him on Twitter.
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This week leftists were ready to pounce on Bob McDonnell, the Republican candidate running for governor in Virginia (which RNC chairman Michael Steele calls one of the most important elections for the Republican Party).  It was appearing he might actually win the key battleground state (up by 12 points over the Democrat), so people like Chris Matthews and others were ready to knock him down.

On the September 1st episode of Hardball under the heading, “Shake up in the VA. Gov. race?”, Matthews brought up a 20 year old thesis McDonnell wrote while working on a law degree at Regents University.  Matthews then points out with a smirk that Pat Robertson headed up that school and then with a look of disdain says:

“So that’s a question in itself – why he went to Pat Robertson’s School?”

I’m sorry Chris – does going to an evangelical Christian university make you suspect for governing?  Does that disqualify you somehow?  Are you really inferring after a week of Kennedy worship (a Catholic like yourself, who you praised for standing up against anti-Catholic feelings about a Catholic holding elected office) that being an evangelical Christian may be enough reason to reject someone from winning an election?

Matthews then goes on to talk with Michelle Bernard of Independent Women’s Voice about McDonnell being anti-women because in his Regent thesis he defended a traditional view of the family.  And over and over again both Matthews and Bernard repeated that McDonnell must prove he has evolved.  Traditional views are now a disqualifier and you must show secular evolution to serve in office.  Next Bernard stumbled on her words and it is unclear if she is talking about either left-wing or right-wing feminists as “crazy”, “rabid”, and “foaming at the mouth”.  Bernard goes even further by then calling stay-at-home moms “right wing feminists” who “like Sarah Palin for example”, but yet she claims they would be mad at McDonnell too for some reason.  So who’s the one that needs evolving here on views of women?  She then asks if McDonnell “can really act as governor” with such views.

Here’s an excerpt from this discussion:

MATTHEWS: In other words he‘s saying that, if you give tax cuts or tax breaks for people for child care, you‘re encouraging the wrong pattern in American life, women in the workplace.


MATTHEWS:  That‘s a bad thing.

BERNARD:  Yes.  Yes, from his perspective—or at least from his perspective when he was 34 years old.

Here‘s the dynamic you have to look at.  Sometimes, you might say, well, you can‘t say that somebody believes the things that they wrote or that they have not evolved if they wrote a thesis, say, at age 21 or 22.  He was a 34-year-old — 34-year-old man when he wrote this.

MATTHEWS:  This wasn‘t the indiscretion of youth.

BERNARD:  Exactly.  It absolutely wasn‘t the indiscretion of youth.

Second question, then, is, did he write this because he thought this would be appealing to the teachers at Pat Robertson‘s school, a very far-right conservative school, or did he write this because he actually believes it?  Women are one of the most important voting blocs in the country.

Matthews closes out the segment by saying Virginia is “growing” and “thinking now” as if to say surely they will put down McDonnell – they are far more evolved than he.  And Bernard follows up his statement about how thoughtful and growing Virginia is by mentioning how it cast its electoral votes for Barack Obama.  So clearly Virginia isn’t a dumb, hick, traditional state anymore since they were smart enough to vote Obama.

Does being a Christian or especially an evangelical Christian really disregard you from running for office?  I voted Huckabee in 2008, so I heard that argument made a lot.  However, there is nothing in Scripture that would lead someone to believe that Christians can’t govern.  No passages even hint at condemning it.  Christians are supposed impact the world around them and shine as lights.  What a great way to do that by serving your country in political office.  There isn’t much about this issue in the Bible, but in Acts 25 and 26 the apostle Paul purposefully tried to lead some governing authorities to follow Christ and believe the gospel.  He made no mention that they would then not be fit to lead.

If we ever get to the point in this country that holding traditional values or believing Christian principles disqualifies you from office than the culture war will be over.  Secularism and leftist policies will have won.  And our country will go the way of so many empires of the past – we will be ruined.

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