US Christian Organisations to Reach Out to Newly Elected Democrats

The Christian Defense Coalition, the National Pro-life Action Center and Faith and Action are just three of numerous Christian ministries and institutions in the US that are hoping to reach out to the newly elected Democratic members of Congress following their sweeping victory in last week's mid-term elections.

The Democrats made significant inroads into the 'God vote' in last Tuesday's poll, picking up 29 per cent of the vote among white evangelicals and, significantly, winning back the Roman Catholic vote. Much of the Republican Party's Christian base did, contrary to expectations, stick by President Bush on the day.

The faith and value groups are keen to stress that members of their organisations are committed to principles and values rather than allegiance to a particular political party or partisan politics and will embrace democrats who share these values.

Rev Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition, said: "As Christians we are not beholden to any one political party or group. Rather, we have been called to stand for principles that make America stronger, safer and healthier.

"These are values that support the family and marriage, protect expressions of faith in the public square, build social justice and affirm the dignity of human life.

"The lesson the Republican Party needs to take away from the 2006 mid-term elections is if they abandon those core principles faith voters will abandon them."

Rev Mahoney, a lifelong democrat, said however that he was looking forward not only to working with newly elected democratic members of Congress who embrace such principles but also to helping the Republican Party to rebuild its relationship with faith voters.

Dr Paul Chaim Schenck, Director of the National Pro- life Action Center, states: "Many people are asking what the new Congress will mean for the support of human life. We are eager to work with any member of Congress, especially Democrats, in developing a pro-life, pro-family agenda for 2007 and behind. We must be reminded that this is not a partisan effort. Rather, it is a principled effort."

Dr Schenck said he had already contacted the offices of inbound members and offered Democratic pro-life organisations the centre's assistance on Capitol Hill.