Saturday, December 15, 2007

Defying Conventional Wisdom

Money talks in politics, and sometimes it gives a sermon.

Clergy and religious organizations contribute to political candidates, just like investment bankers or teachers or any other group. That clergy give doesn't surprise, but how they're giving does. Although religious leaders' total campaign 2008 contribution of $633,314 is a drop in the bucket ("clergy and religious organizations" is ranked 71st out of 80 "industries" tracked by The Center for Responsive Politics), the money distribution shows that the "God dollar" is as up for grabs as the "God vote."

Thus far in the '08 cycle, 56 percent of religious groups' and leaders' donations have gone to Democrats, and 43 percent to Republicans, compared with 52/47 in favor of Republicans in '06 and 51/49 in favor of Democrats (!) in 2004.

Among presidential candidates, Barack Obama leads with $107,350, followed by Hillary Clinton's $88,910 and Mitt Romney's $39,350. Would you have guessed that the leading Democrat has raked in nearly three times as much money as the top Republican? Me neither.

More after the click ...

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