An End to Mixing Religion and Politics?

Kevin Rennie of the Harford  Courant (via Political Wire)  points out yet another good thing to come out of this week’s elections:

This election brought one overlooked blessing. There will probably be less public flaunting of private religious beliefs in campaigns. The voters in one state issued a firm rebuke to that. That’s one way to interpret the defeat of Harold Ford, Jr. in Tennessee. Good Lord, a political commercial filmed in church. Democrats must have sent silence prayers into the ether for relief from that stunt. The voters of Tennessee answered them. Please, let the curse of blunt displays of piety in politics initiated by Jimmy Carter thirty years ago, come to an end. If Jesus had cared that much about politics he would have delivered the Sermon on the Mount in Rome.

Yes, hopefully this is the end of this. After 2004 many Democrats thought his was necessary, including liberal from the liberal northeast. Howard Dean has made a number of statements about religion which, regardless of his personal beliefs, sounded forced and inauthentic. Even John Kerry, who wisely went through his entire politcal career avoiding mixing politics and religion until now, felt compelled to speak on the subject in September.

Let The Horse Race Begin

We know that attention would shift towards 2008 after the mid term elections were over, but Tom Vilsack is wasting no time. The Des Moines Register reports that Vilsack plans to formally announce his candidacy today. Assuming he raises enough money to be a viable candidate when the caucuses begin, this will probably prevent Kerry from opening as he did with an Iowa victory in 2004, making New Hampshire and Nevada more important.