Mark A. Smith is professor of Political Science and an adjunct professor of Comparative Religion and Communication at the University of Washington. His research focuses on economic and religious groups, ideas, and influences in American politics. In his new book, Secular Faith: How Culture Has Trumped Religion in American Politics, Dr. Smith argues that religion is not nearly the unchanging conservative influence in American politics that we have come to think it is and is best understood as responding to changing political and cultural values rather than shaping them.
Welcome to the Morning Buzz, PRRI’s morning dose of religion-related news with a shot of data – because what doesn’t liven up a morning round-up like some public opinion numbers?
In which Americans, once again, demonstrate that they are always willing to say stupid things on TV.
New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg is launching his own SuperPAC to support moderate candidates.
Forget next week’s final presidential debate – this showdown between this year’s third-party candidates, moderated by Larry King, is the one to watch.
The election could come down to one issue: coal.
At Religion & Politics, Tiffany Stanley takes us inside a church service on Pulpit Freedom Sunday. Some 1,500 pastors are committing civil disobedience by endorsing candidates from the pulpit.
And speaking of church/state issues, a Texas town is divided over whether high school cheerleaders should be able to hold up Bible verses during sports games.