When Religion and Politics Mix
As the American political system roars into action at the Iowa caucus today, the official starting line of the 2012 primary season, we would like to take a moment to remind voters and candidates alike of the “dos and don’ts” of religion in politics. A few months ago, Rabbi David Saperstein of the Religious Action Center and Rev. Oliver Thomas, both knowledgeable religious leaders and esteemed constitutional scholars, came together to outline “5 Rules for Faith and Politics in 2012.” The column, written for USA Today, provides guidelines meant to instruct candidates and religious leaders alike. It discusses everything from the constitutional prohibition against a religious test for public office to the laws governing tax-exempt houses of worship and religious leaders when it comes to partisan politicking.
It is our hope that candidates and religious leaders take these guidelines to heart and refrain from blending religion and politics in a way that would jeopardize the separation between church and state. Keep checking RACblog for updates on this issue and the 2012 edition of the “Get Out the Vote” guide, which will be released shortly.