In an interview with a Christian Broadcasting Network blog, Barack Obama stood by his assessment that conservative Christian leaders have “hijacked” religion. The candidate went even further, declaring that America is not exclusively a Christian nation.
“When you have pastors and television pundits who appear to explicitly coordinate with one political party; when you’re implying that your fellow Americans are traitors, terrorist sympathizers or akin to the devil himself; then I think you’re attempting to hijack the faith of those who follow you for your own personal or political ends,” the freshman Illinois Senator said at The Brody File.
Brody had asked Obama about his critique of Christian right leaders given in a June 23 address to a convention of the United Church of Christ, the senator’s denomination.
[...]“For my friends on the right, I think it would be helpful to remember the critical role that the separation of church and state has played in preserving not only our democracy but also our religious practice,” Obama wrote to Brody, pointing to early American leaders who fought to include the First Amendment in the Bill of Rights.
He went on, “Whatever we once were, we’re no longer just a Christian nation; we are also a Jewish nation, a Muslim nation, a Buddhist nation, a Hindu nation, and a nation of non-believers.”