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What would Hillary do?
Posted by: mcq on Thursday, March 23, 2006

This is interesting mostly for the rhetoric involved.
Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton ratcheted up her talk about religion yesterday - saying a GOP-sponsored bill making it a felony to be in the United States illegally would have "criminalized" Jesus.

Clinton, who's considered the Democratic front-runner for the 2008 White House race, made the comments at a hastily scheduled news conference about the House-passed bill aimed at illegal immigrants.

Clinton blasted Republican leadership, which "is constantly talking about values and about faith [but put] forth such a mean-spirited piece of legislation."

"It is certainly not in keeping with my understanding of the Scriptures," she added.
My guess is her understanding of scriptures is about as deep as her understanding of plantations.
"Because this bill would literally criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself."
"Give unto Caesar", etc.

She, of course, won't be the only one on the left desperately casting about for opportunities to invoke scriptural lessons and analogies for the next few years. Given the fallout from 2004, Democrats are sure that co-opting the "faith and values" position of the right is an necessary evil on the road to electoral gain.

On the bright side, the opportunity for some interesting political theater over the next few years is at least promising.


UPDATE [Jon Henke]

A Hillary Flashback to July 25, 2005...
"We can have faith and religion in our lives without using religion to divide Americans."
 
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Christ on a stick, where to start? With the easy stuff: Not "literally", Hillary, "figuratively". It’s not a difficult distinction.

Next: imagine the reaction had Bush said the Democrats wanted to criminalize Jesus. What happened to leaving Jesus out of it?

Interesting side-note: the perception that the Democratic Party is hostile to religion comes not from a lack of religious — even deeply religious — people in the party, but from the presence of a heavy dose of seculars. The Atlantic Monthly recently did a story on that, pointing out that it’s just a portion of the Democratic base whose strident anti-religious views force the Democratic Party to be much more neutral than the Republican party. I’d be curious to see how they’ll react to this kind of rhetoric.
 
Written By: Jon Henke
URL: http://www.QandO.net
This kind of rhetoric will go down well with the Religious Left - Methodists, Presbyterians, Unitarians, etc. Having spent years in the Methodist Church, I can vouch for the willingness of their clergy to embrace this kind of simplistic nonsense to justify their political positions. (For those who don’t know, the vast majority of the Methodist clergy is quite far left on the scale. This article demonstrates a typical political move by the Methodist bishops.)

But I can’t believe Hillary is pandering to them. The Christian left is in the pocket already.

It won’t attract any of the Christian right. They bristle whenever anyone like Hillary starts lecturing them on Christian principles.

So I conclude it’s aimed at the non-regular-churchgoing public, many of whom have a general sympathy for Christian principles, but haven’t thought too deeply about how those principles apply to politics. I think the same reasoning was used by her husband, who for a while made sure he was photographed almost every weekend carrying the biggest Bible he could tote into a church somewhere.

This incident is more interesting for what it shows about Hillary. She’s obviously willing to push the bounds on debate to try and find a vein that will resonate with enough voters to get her elected. This is probably an appropriate risk for her, given her general disapproval ratings (over 40% of people in typical polls about her say they would never vote for her under any circumstances).

If she continues to do this, I suspect she will be one of the future victims of a blogswarm, when she says something so stupid or outrageous that it’s clear even to her supporters. The sympathetic media will try to downplay it, but if she goes over the line enough, the new media will push the story into the national consciousness anyway.

 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
So, making it a felony to be in the country illegally is mean-spirited? It’s bad to make a criminal act a crime?

And would someone have Hillary explain how the Good Samaritan and Jesus were illegal immigrants?

I’m reminded of a dozen or so years ago when Jesse Jackson referred to Mary and Joseph as "homeless". They may not have been in their house, but they were travelling; by Jackson’s definition, anyone on a business trip is "homeless".

The funny thing is, there’s plenty of room to the right of Republicans on this issue, and Hillary is staking out points left of them.

 
Written By: Steverino
URL: http://steverino.journalspace.com
Christ on a stick, where to start? With the easy stuff: Not "literally", Hillary, "figuratively"
Yeah Jon, but said correctly, it doesn’t sound as good...
"Because this bill would figuratively criminalize the Good Samaritan and probably even Jesus himself."
Besides, people use that phrase incorrectly so frequently that I doubt they know the proper usage.
 
Written By: meagain
URL: http://
SNL Hillary: "It’s simple, I was pandering..."

The problem with the Dems is not just that they have a pack of rabid secularists in their voter base and leadership. Sure thats a problem, but most of those guys realize that the other Dems don’t really mean all this Jesus stuff. They’re politically savvy enough to recognize strategy when they see it.

The problem is that when the Dems do try to get religious, they pull crap like this. If you’re going to play the Jesus card, play it right. "Loving your neighbor" and "honoring your father and mother" could be used to back any number of social policies, but illegal immigration? What the hell? I don’t recall Jesus discussing that topic much.

All I’m saying is that if you’re going to get religion on the campaign trail know which part of the Bible Job is in.

The methodists are a denomination of two wings: liberal and conservative. Despite what Billy says, the Methodists are actually tilting back more and more conservative every year. If the current trend continues, the conservatives will have control of the denomination in about a decade. Then we’ll be seeing some fireworks and the possibility that the United Methodists won’t be so United anymore.
 
Written By: Jeff the Baptist
URL: http://jeffthebaptist.blogspot.com
My experience as a mostly-lapsed Methodist (in a red state, to be sure) is that the Methodist congregations tend to be fairly conservative, the Methodist pastors tend to be moderate with some left sympathies, and the Methodist leaders (Bishop and up) tend to be slightly to mostly liberal.



But what really blows my mind is that Hillary’s words suggest she has no idea what a passport or visa is or how an Israeli might go about getting one.

 
Written By: Dave
URL: http://
Off topic, but I’m a Catholic convert, I USED to be a Methodist, not a good one but still a member, and the church lost me when it removed "Onward Christian Soldiers" from the hymnals because it was "too warlike". God Forbid we should acknowledge the conflict between Good and Evil and urge ourselves onward, LIKE soldiers, in this conflict. The UMC may be getting more conservative, but it,like many mainline Protestant sects have pretty much become "Socialists with Dog-Collars." It’s the backlash of the "Muscular Christianity" of the 19th C. if you ask me.
 
Written By: Joe
URL: http://
Criminalize Jesus? Hillary is forgetting that the Roman government didn’t care about immigration, but what Rome did do was far worse than the proposed immigration bill. The second chapter of Luke recounts how Augustus ordered a census, requiring men to return to their hometowns. So, as I noted here, Joseph and Mary couldn’t find a room in Bethlehem because a big government policy created a housing shortage.

Let’s not forget that while Hillary accuses the White House of trying to criminalize immigrants, conservatives like Michelle Malkin are criticizing Bush for trying to make it too easy for immigrant workers to come here legally. I call this A Tale of Two Hillarys, because only last year did she start talking like a conservative about the southern border. I suspect she and her advisors realized they may be alienating too much of the Hispanic vote.
 
Written By: Perry Eidelbus
URL: http://eidelblog.blogspot.com
Christ, (no pun intended!) this particular comment by Hillary has the deft touch of a sledgehammer.

All this will do for her is get lots of eyerolls from both sides of the room.

 
Written By: shark
URL: http://
There is successful pandering, and unsuccessful pandering. It is plainly obvious which category Hillary’s comments fall in.
 
Written By: Rosensteel
URL: http://
Despite what Billy says, the Methodists are actually tilting back more and more conservative every year. If the current trend continues, the conservatives will have control of the denomination in about a decade. Then we’ll be seeing some fireworks and the possibility that the United Methodists won’t be so United anymore.
I’d feel better about that possibility if you could offer some tangible evidence of it. Everything I see says the opposite.

I’ve heard recent sermons whose title might as well be "God Wants You To Be a Liberal". I’ve heard sermons that insisted that jihad meant "inner struggle" and had nothing to do with holy war. I’ve seen Sunday School so infested with political correctness that it becomes pointless (and that’s done by the members, not the clergy.)

In that resolution the bishops signed, which was a blatant political attack on Bush, not one bishop opposed it, though a few dozen did abstain. Plus the church support sending Elian Gonzolez back to Cuba, and financial support to groups that go suck up to Castro.

So tell me again where these conservatives are going to come from? I think many of them have been run out of the church.

The one thing I agree on is that nothing short of a split will resolve this problem. Many of the inner city churches have clergy so leftist that they will never accept a conservative shift.
 
Written By: Billy Hollis
URL: http://
Great comments all. And very agreeable.

IMHO - it was a HUGE mistake for her to issue those words. I can see a conservative reporter approaching her with the following question:

"Sen. Clinton, could you explain your interpretation of Scripture as it relates to abortion, gay marriage, or ?"

Consider it from the handlers’ pov... throw her in the pool; she’ll either sink or swim. No doubt they’re all telling her she made it to the edge of the pool. "It wasn’t Graceful, but you made it."

It might be possible there will be more such profound words coming from her. She really, REALLY wants the #1 job (imho).

My only suggestion for her would be - hire someone who knows Scriptures for advice. You think it may happen?
 
Written By: rich
URL: http://onecreativethought.blgospot.com
Jesus opened the door for mankind of every nation to enter into the kingdom of God. He didn’t have a preference which side of a border you came from. He also said not to get involved with this world; this is only a distraction to finding God. Hypocricy may be common, but the real and whole truth is out there, and if you’re sincerely searching, you will find it; even on both sides of even border. God promised.
 
Written By: Charles
URL: http://

 
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