Bush is in a tight spot indeed. With Democratic strategists like Lockhart hopeful that the slew of blunders on Social Security has pierced the White Houses aura of political invincibility, Social Security may seem a harbinger of rough waters ahead for the GOP. The same Wall Street Journal/NBC poll found the Republican base splintering on a number of key issues, from reinsertion of Terri Schiavos feeding tube to banning the use of filibusters on judicial nominees. Says Lockhart: I think Democrats are in a wonderful position to sit back, relax, and enjoy the show.
Faith and Politics is also offers a tour of the wedge issues, and here Danforth is often at his best, illuminating each issue through the prism of his life experience. His powerful critiques of the Christian Right on the issues of stem cell research, religion in the public square, and the Terri Schiavo matter are worth reading in their own right. He writes movingly of his evolution on gay rights. Recalling a former staffer who broke down in tears because she was gay and feared his disapproval, he declares, I know I want no part in the meanness that causes this kind of misery. Danforth also offers ways in which we might work to return a sense of civility to politics, though one wishes that he had chosen a subject other than Clarence Thomas as the focal point of his chapter decrying character assassination.....