Sarah Posner

Sarah Posner's coverage of religion and politics has appeared in The Washington Post, The New York Times, Rolling Stone, The Week, and many others.

 

Recent Articles

The Recruit

Last fall, while doing some reporting in northeastern Kentucky, I was talking to two local activists (registered Democrats, no less!) about why they were trying to shut down anti-bullying training at the public high school. Their gripe? By teaching that homosexuality is normal, and that students shouldn't harass their classmates because they're gay, the training sought to recruit students into being gay. "You know," said one of the activists, "homosexuality cannot be reproduced, because two homosexuals can't bear children. So they have to recruit people into their organizations." There's still a slice of America, in the post-Ellen DeGeneres/ Will and Grace era, that didn't laugh when prominent megachurch pastor Ted Haggard was declared "completely heterosexual" earlier this week by a panel of pastoral counselors charged with the task of turning him into the straightest man ever to hire a male prostitute. For them, the recruitment narrative is so powerful that Haggard's three-year...

What Evangelical Problem?

Just a few months ago, word on the street was that Mitt Romney had an "evangelical problem." His quest for the Republican presidential nomination was dead on arrival, the thinking went, because the Christian right -- essential to putting him in the White House -- wouldn't endorse a Mormon. Then, as he began to emerge as a serious contender for the hearts and minds of the true believers, Romney got hammered for his flip-flop on abortion and metamorphosis from a left-of-Ted Kennedy gay-rights advocate to the only governor in American history to compare his own state unfavorably to Sodom. But none of this has stopped some of the Christian right's most influential power brokers from offering endorsements and strategic help, signaling that Romney is doing more than pandering on abortion and gay marriage. He's on board to change the courts and their interpretation of the Constitution. Jay Sekulow, the head of Pat Robertson's American Center for Law and Justice (ALCJ) and one of the most...

BUSH: BLACKWELL...

BUSH: BLACKWELL IS A �NUT.� The Toledo Blade pointed out yesterday that buried on page 347 of Bob Woodward�s State of Denial is this not so flattering Bush remark about Ken Blackwell , who other Republicans -- including the President�s brother -- have touted as a rising GOP star: Mr. Woodward writes that around 3 a.m. - which Mr. Bush called "the latest I've been up since college" - the White House was expecting to hear from Ohio's top election official. That, of course, was Mr. Blackwell, who was co-chairman of the Bush campaign in the Buckeye State. "Blackwell," Mr. Woodward writes, "a former black-power-saluting student leader who had shifted to the Republican Party, was a lone ranger who shunned party discipline. 'I'm the President of the United States,' Mr. Bush said fuming, 'waiting on a secretary of state who is a nut.'" What did that mean, exactly? Surely Bush -- who used Blackwell�s help to make the exploitation of the fundamentalist Christian vote a particularly lucrative...

DEWINE LOOKING FOR DIVINE INTERVENTION?

DEWINE LOOKING FOR DIVINE INTERVENTION? Mike DeWine may be able to distance himself from his fellow Ohio Republicans' ethical scandals, from Ken Blackwell 's God-centered politicking, and even, just maybe, from Bush , but will he distance himself from the Armageddon hunters ? In this photo, circulated by Rod Parsley , DeWine is shown meeting with Parsley and Ohio delegates of John Hagee 's Christians United for Israel (CUFI) this summer, discussing "his support for the nation of Israel." But for Hagee, Parsley, and their CUFI followers, "supporting Israel" has meant lobbying against the cease-fire between Israel and Hezbollah and clamoring for military intervention against Iran. Their motives do not stem from a love of the nation of Israel, as Israel-supporting Jews in Ohio might expect. Rather, they seek a world-ending conflagration leading to the Second Coming of Christ. As Parsley put it in his newsletter with the photo of DeWine, CUFI is "an organization that supports Israel in...

A BELLWETHER BLOWOUT?...

A BELLWETHER BLOWOUT? More trouble is brewing for Ken Blackwell �s gubernatorial bid in Ohio. Last week, three prominent Ohio Republicans publicly denounced Blackwell as being outside the mainstream of the Republican Party and announced their support for his Democratic opponent, Ted Strickland . Might Karl Rove , John McCain , and the editor of Human Events , to name a few , be out of touch with what real Americans, real Ohioans -- and even real Republicans -- want? Leading the charge was Charles �Rocky� Saxbe , a well-known Columbus attorney, former member of the Ohio House of Representatives, and one-time Republican candidate for state attorney general. Saxbe�s father , William Saxbe , is a powerhouse in the Ohio Republican Party, having served as Speaker of the Ohio House of Representatives, Ohio Attorney General, a member of the United States Senate, and Attorney General of the United States in a political career that spanned four decades. I caught up with Saxbe this morning, who...

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