The Faith Factor

JUST HOW DEVOUT DO AMERICANS WANT THEIR PRESIDENT TO BE? THE ANSWER IS PROVING TO BE A MAJOR REASON WHY THE 2004 CAMPAIGN IS SO DIVISIVE

It's only natural that a country founded by pilgrims would never LET ITS politics wander far from its faith. As voters weigh the faith-based presidency of George W. Bush, they should note that his is hardly the first of its kind. George Washington ad-libbed the line "So help me God" at the end of his swearing-in, and Thomas Jefferson extolled Jesus as the most important philosopher in his life two centuries before Bush ever did. Abraham Lincoln, the President whom Bush says he admires most, called the Civil War God's punishment for the sin of slavery, and the presidency an office...

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