By most standards, the Bush Administration, more than any other in U.S. history, has blurred the distinction between church and state. Never before has so much taxpayer money, some $2 billion, gone to religious groups via the “faith-based initiative” program. According to Kevin Phillips, the base of Bush’s political support is “a huge evangelical. fundamentalist, and Pentecostal community” with their own “broadcast, publishing, and direct-mail empires.” A 2006 Baylor University poll finds Americans in large numbers believe in a wrathful, authoritarian God. And many agree that “God favors the U.S. in international politics.” As religious fervor grows, is democracy edging toward theocracy?
Interview by David Barsamian.
Recorded at KGNU.
Kevin Phillips was chief political analyst for the 1968 Republican presidential campaign, which culminated in the victory of Richard Nixon. Phillips also was partly responsible for the design of the Republican “Southern strategy,” which transformed the once Democratic South into a Republican stronghold. In 1969 he wrote The Emerging Republican Majority. His politics evolved over the ensuing decades. He wrote many books including American Theocracy and Bad Money. He died in 2023.