Conservative group issues presidential voting guide
DALLAS – The Family Research Council (FRC), an influential conservative lobby group with strong evangelical ties, has issued a “Values Voter Guide For 2008 Presidential Candidates.”
Self-styled “values voters” are religiously motivated social conservatives — usually evangelical Protestants or conservative Catholics — who cast their ballots for candidates sharing their moral outlook such as opposition to abortion rights and gay marriage.
These voters are a key base for the Republican Party and, while groups such as the FRC do not endorse specific candidates, conservative Republicans tend to be the main beneficiaries of their activism.
Distribution of voters’ guides, detailing the positions of candidates on key issues such as stem cell research, are a core activity for such groups.
Among other things, it asks whether candidates “support Medicaid-funded abortions,” what form of stem cell research they would allow federal funding for, and whether they would support a constitutional amendment “to define and protect marriage as the union of one man and one woman.”
It says Democratic presidential hopeful Senator Hillary Clinton supports Medicaid-funded abortions and opposes a constitutional amendment that would effectively bar gay marriage.
Former Arkansas Governor and Republican candidate Mike Huckabee — the emerging favorite of religious conservatives — would, according to the FRC voter guide, “veto any bill to provide federal civil rights protection on the basis of sexual orientation.”
— Photo credit (top): Reuters/Rebecca Cook. Mike Huckabee, a favorite of religious conservatives, campaigns in Warren, Michigan, Jan 15
— Photo credit (bottom): Reuters/Phil Klein. Hillary Clinton, a former first lady, speaks at the University of California Santa Barbara, Jan 17