Like Trump and Cruz, Marco Rubio is talking about his faith. After the jump, see his response to an atheist and his campaign commercial that includes talk about accepting the free gift of salvation offered by Jesus Christ.”
Does he go too far in mingling Christianity and politics? What differences do you see between these three presidential candidates in the way they relate their faith to their politics? My observations after the jump.
Confronted by an “activist atheist,” Marco Rubio said he’ll champion a country where “no one is forced to violate their conscience.”
“No one is going to force you to believe in God, but no one is going to force me to stop talking about God,” said the Florida senator, prompting applause and a whistle of support from the crowd.
During a town hall on Monday morning, Justin Scott, 34, of Waterloo asked about Rubio’s new ad, explaining that atheists such as him are “looking for somebody that will uphold their rights as Americans, and not pander to a certain religious group,” he said.
In the commercial, Rubio does not mention specific political policy but discusses how “our goal is eternity, the ability to live alongside our creator for all time. To accept the free gift of salvation offered by Jesus Christ.”
“You have a right to believe whatever you want,” said Rubio, a Roman Catholic, in response. “You have a right to believe in nothing at all.”
Rubio went on to explain how his faith has been the “single greatest influence in my life, and from that I’ll never hide.”
See also this.
It seems to me, based on this series of posts, that we see here three different approaches to Christianity and politics. Trump shows a politician trying to use Christianity to get into power. Cruz shows the view of Christianity and the political system supporting each other, as in civil religion. Rubio is emphasizing religious liberty, so that neither the atheist nor the Christian is silenced. He is also emphasizing his own personal faith as a motivating factor in his life, and thus a sense of vocation.