Voters to GOP: Don't Falter at the Alter
Republican voters don’t just support natural marriage -- they expect their candidates to! That was abundantly clear Tuesday, when local exit polls starting streaming in. For conservatives, the data was a gold mine on social issues that will help debunk the Left’s tall tales about the popularity of same-sex “marriage.” In state after state, voters refused to give an inch on marriage -- and instead exposed how exaggerated the cultural shift has been.
Despite what the media would have you believe, the public opinion battle has been a bigger one than the Left bargained for -- with most Americans’ views barely budging on an institution the courts are so anxious to redefine. A month after a Pew poll showed support for same-sex “marriage” dipping, the issue was front and center in a few key Senate races -- including North Carolina, Iowa, and Arkansas.
Thom Tillis, who, just weeks ago, was down in his race, starting picking up steam when he took a public stand to defend the Tarheels’ marriage amendment (which 57% still support). That’s consistent with the stories in Kansas with Senator Pat Roberts (R) and Iowa, where Joni Ernst never wavered on a topic too many moderates run from. As much as the Republican Establishment hates to admit it, marriage was a key ingredient in the recipe to defeat Democrats.
The numbers bear that out in at least seven states where pollsters asked the question. Seven out of 10 voters in my home state of Louisiana said they opposed same-sex “marriage,” which is almost identical to their northern neighbors in Arkansas, where 69% rejected the idea. In Virginia, where candidate Ed Gillespie stood with marriage, 53% of Virginians stood with him and disagreed with the move to redefine marriage. South Carolina, home of newly-elected social conservative Senator Tim Scott (R), two-thirds of voters identified with him on marriage. Georgia (62%) and Ohio (a majority) echoed the pro-marriage refrain. Of the exit stats we could find, only Florida was competitive -- with the two sides dead even (48% to 48%) on the question.
Of course, this is all consistent with what Americans have said with their ballots -- both for and against marriage amendments in their home states. For all the Left’s hype, only three states have actively voted to redefine marriage -- which barely adds up to about 5% of the population -- hardly the consensus liberals claim it is. Rasmussen, Fox News, and even Politico polling have all shown the debate holding steady despite -- or maybe because of -- the assault from the courts. As plenty of Tuesday’s candidates will tell you, supporting marriage doesn’t just put you on the right side of history -- but the right side of the win column too!
Reformation of Church and State
When Houston Mayor Annise Parker targeted local pastors, she didn’t do it randomly. Like us, she knows that churches hold the key to the greatest cultural change in America. If you don’t believe me, check out this week’s election results. For 11 years, FRC has made pastors outreach a primary mission with the understanding that the country’s pulpits -- not its politicians -- have the transformational power this nation needs. With that in mind, we’ve built a network across the states with the goal of bringing pastors to stronger engagement on the issues of our day.
The fruit of that ministry was never clearer than this week, when states where we had the strongest church presence turned out to defend faith, family, and freedom. Over the past several months, FRC’s church ministries team canvassed Arizona, North Carolina, Texas, Iowa, Louisiana, Arkansas, Florida, Colorado, Kansas, and Alaska -- states where vital Senate, gubernatorial, and local races hung in the balance.
Thousands of pastors -- 2,764 -- turned out for special regional pastors briefings, designed to inform and equip local churches on issues of importance right in their backyards. While that was happening, we also trained another 245 culture impact team leaders, who act as the churches’ command center for the efforts to engage the culture. And based on Tuesday’s victories, the Church was involved at a whole new level, electing solid pro-family conservatives in states where FRC was most involved.
Evangelicals from our target states turned out to vote for FRC Action PAC-approved candidates in: Arkansas (Sen. Tom Cotton, Reps. Bruce Westerman and Rick Crawford), Colorado (Reps. Ken Buck and Doug Lamborn), Florida (Reps. Bill Posey, Jeff Miller, Ted Yoho, Ron DeSantis, John Mica, and Dennis Ross), Iowa (Sen. Joni Ernst, Reps. Rod Blum, David Young, and Steve King), Kansas (Gov. Sam Brownback, Sen. Pat Roberts, and Reps. Kris Kobach, Tim Huelskamp, and Mike Pompeo), Louisiana (Reps. John Fleming and Steve Scalise), North Carolina (Senator Thom Tillis and Reps. Renee Elmers, Virginia Foxx, Richard Hudson, Walter Jones, Mark Meadows, and Robert Pittenger), and Texas (Reps. Louie Gohmert, Sam Johnson, Jeb Hensarling, John Culberson, Kevin Brady, Michael McCaul, Randy Weber, Bill Flores, Randy Neugebauer, Lamar Smith, Pete Olson, Kenny Marchant, Roger Williams, Michael Burgess, John Carter).
To learn how you can get involved with our Watchmen on the Wall ministry or connect your church with our Culture Impact Teams, click over to our website.
Delivering the Male…
If there was a war on women, sex-selection abortion would be it. While liberals were busy inventing a controversy about gender discrimination, the biggest offenders are from their own camp -- Democrats who refuse to protect babies from the horrible practice of targeting baby girls in the womb. For years, pro-lifers have tried to outlaw the practice --only to see groups like Planned Parenthood encouraging it in shocking undercover videos like this one. In 2012, Congressman Trent Franks (R-Ariz.) shook his head as members of the U.S. House shot down his bill, the Prenatal Non-Discrimination Act, to ban these abortions because it somehow “trampled the rights of women.” Over in Britain, Parliament was much less divided on the issue and made sex-selection abortion illegal this week with almost shocking unanimity. By a vote of 181-1, members of the country’s legislative body agreed to prosecute doctors caught aborting babies on the grounds of gender. A whopping 80% of the British people disagree with aborting a child simply for being the “wrong sex.” If Britain can do it, why not the U.S.? Even a country as sharply divided on abortion as this one overwhelmingly believes (77%) that America should outlaw sex-selection abortion. But when it comes to the systematic annihilation of innocent girls, liberals would rather align with policies like China’s than cede so much as an inch of pro-life ground. And they say they’re the party of women?
** BREAKING NEWS: We’re pleased to see the 6th circuit uphold natural marriage. Stay tuned for more details in tomorrow’s Update!
*** Don’t miss CNS News’s Terry Jeffrey, as he offers his election analysis at yesterday’s special newscast from FRC headquarters.
Tony Perkins' Washington Update is written with the aid of FRC senior writers.