View Poll Results: Do clergymen actively try to influence voting from the pulpit?

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  • yes

    18 56.25%
  • no

    14 43.75%
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Thread: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

  1. #1
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    Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    I have been reading various posts in this forum making statements that church leaders tell their congregations who to vote for. I have not been an active churchgoer for about 27 or so years, so I have no actual current evidence that this is not the case, but for the first half of my life, I was a regular church participant, and I never (ever) saw this to be the case.

    If you are a church member, who attends on a somewhat regular basis, is it your experience that pastors and other clergy members actively try to persuade their congregations in how to vote or whom to vote for?
    I have trouble believing that this is the case, and I don't believe the majority of religious service attendees are uninformed or ignorant enough to want or need a pastor to tell them who to vote for.

    I'm counting on honesty in the thread, and hoping not to have this thread turned into a religious bashing, because I am not opposed to religion in the least. So please, keep this in consideration. I'm truly curious as to if churches are pushing politics these days.

    If you have indeed seen politics from the pulpit, I would be interesetd in the denomination (if you don't mind divulging the information).
    "God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    I am not a church goer. So I can't verify if any ministers do, but ministers should influence voters in his congregation. I believe that it is a minister's job to inform his congregation which candidates comes close to the beliefs of their religious organization,especially how we have this thing in this country called free speech.
    Last edited by jamesrage; 02-26-10 at 04:11 PM.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Both Pat Robertson and Jesse Love Child Jackson have said "vote for me".

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    I've seen it done indirectly. My grandma asks me to go to church with her occasionally, and despite being an agnostic, I usually go because it makes her happy. I've seen the preacher there say things to the effect of "with the election coming up I want to remind everyone to go out and vote and to look deep in their hearts and decide which candidate god would approve of". I don't really see anything wrong with that. What I have far more of a problem with is when religious organizations attempt to influence already elected officials.
    If you build a man a fire, he'll be warm for a day.

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Quote Originally Posted by molten_dragon View Post
    I've seen the preacher there say things to the effect of "with the election coming up I want to remind everyone to go out and vote and to look deep in their hearts and decide which candidate god would approve of".
    Oh. Okay. That makes sense to me, but it doesn't (to me) equate to actively campaigning for specific candidates.
    ----------

    It looks from the poll so far, like it's more common than I realize, assuming the posters are understanding what I am asking.

    Thanks everyone for posting so far.
    "God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
    -C G Jung

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Not personally, but I know it happens from others. They are in a leadership position in the community so I assume some would try this.
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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    I have been reading various posts in this forum making statements that church leaders tell their congregations who to vote for. I have not been an active churchgoer for about 27 or so years, so I have no actual current evidence that this is not the case, but for the first half of my life, I was a regular church participant, and I never (ever) saw this to be the case.

    If you are a church member, who attends on a somewhat regular basis, is it your experience that pastors and other clergy members actively try to persuade their congregations in how to vote or whom to vote for?
    I have trouble believing that this is the case, and I don't believe the majority of religious service attendees are uninformed or ignorant enough to want or need a pastor to tell them who to vote for.

    I'm counting on honesty in the thread, and hoping not to have this thread turned into a religious bashing, because I am not opposed to religion in the least. So please, keep this in consideration. I'm truly curious as to if churches are pushing politics these days.

    If you have indeed seen politics from the pulpit, I would be interesetd in the denomination (if you don't mind divulging the information).
    Yes I have, and my church makes no bones about it.

    We can do these things because we're not a 501c3, so nanynanybooboo

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    I got an email from my deacon telling me I shouldn't vote for Kerry because he was FOR abortion. I fired one back and told him in no uncertain terms that he shouldn't be telling me whom to vote for and that his acessment was not correct.

    I feel if a church wants to engage in politics than their tax exempt status should be revoked. It's the law after all.

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Quote Originally Posted by EnigmaO01 View Post
    I got an email from my deacon telling me I shouldn't vote for Kerry because he was FOR abortion. I fired one back and told him in no uncertain terms that he shouldn't be telling me whom to vote for ....
    I agree. I don't condone it, I am just wondering how common it is, if it does happen.

    That being said, a deacon and a pastor are quite different imo as far as influence goes. A pastor or other clergy member is the head of the church organization, at least symbolically. I think this places much more responsibility on him to remain more objective and unbiased when it comes to dealing with his congregation.
    Last edited by lizzie; 02-27-10 at 12:22 AM.
    "God is the name by which I designate all things which cross my path violently and recklessly, all things which alter my plans and intentions, and change the course of my life, for better or for worse."
    -C G Jung

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    Re: Have you personally seen a clergyman actively try to influence votes?

    Quote Originally Posted by EnigmaO01 View Post
    I got an email from my deacon telling me I shouldn't vote for Kerry because he was FOR abortion. I fired one back and told him in no uncertain terms that he shouldn't be telling me whom to vote for and that his acessment was not correct.

    I feel if a church wants to engage in politics than their tax exempt status should be revoked. It's the law after all.
    Sending you his opinion is not "engaging in politics".

    Taking away tax-exempt status isn't a punishment, either.

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