This Kathleen Parker article appeared in my local newspaper, but the link is to Townhall.com, which is good since my local paper's website doesn't reprint everything it printed in the paper. But anyway, Parker is considered a conservative pundit and I have found fault with her reasoning, which might cause heart palpitations in some of my liberal visitors.
Parker's concern is with the Saddleback event hosted by Rick Warren. She believes it constitutes a religious litmus test that is unAmerican. My problem with this is that this is one of those things from which the federal government is restricted, but not us. We are perfectly free to judge the worthiness of a candidate based on our own prejudices and guidelines. It is not unAmerican in the least. That is what voting is all about: voting for the candidate that we feel is the best for our nation. And in the deciding, we are free to use any "test" we so choose to satisfy our desire or anxiety regarding the course and future of the United States of America.
For myself, I enjoy knowing what shapes a candidate's world view. Upon what is it based? And if the candidate is a man/woman of faith, what faith and how does he/she understand it? Any insights into this are as important for me as their stances on the issues themselves.
It's all part of the pecking order of stats and minutia that help me determine which candidate gets my support. During the primaries, Romney's Mormonism was a mark against him. Not a big mark, because I've known a Mormon or two in my life and found them to be very Christian-like. And as it appeared he had a real shot at winning the nomination (at least for a while), I knew that his faith was not something that would be prohibitive in the face of an Obama, Clinton, Edwards, or any of the other Democratic jokers he might face in the general.
But it is a factor. I would prefer my president to be as typical of a true Bible-believing Christian as possible. I would prefer he be the type of Christian I myself strive to be. I know this probably scares some people. They might refer to Bush and make some crack about his quality (as if they were accurate in their assessment).
But the point is that we, as voters, have the right to judge candidates on their religious position as well as anything else. We, in fact, would be remiss as citizens if we ignored such things should we judge them important.