The Ayes Have It … or Do They? By Ken Connor , Christian Post Guest Columnist

Posted: September 19, 2012 in The Christian Post
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According to the breathless reviews of MSNBC correspondents and  the like, the Democratic National Convention was a smashing success. With  celebrity cameos, notable speeches by Michelle Obama, Bill Clinton, and Joe  Biden, and a grand finale oration chock-full of the “hope and change” rhetoric  that won Obama the White House in 2008, it was by all accounts a great week for  Democrats.

If you tuned in into your favorite cable news outlet on Wednesday afternoon  however, you witnessed a moment that the President and his surrogates would  prefer you forget. In an attempt to defuse growing criticism over the removal of  “God and Jerusalem” from the Democratic platform, a motion was made to  reintroduce these elements and a voice vote was called to authorize the change.  A 2/3 majority was required for the amendment to take effect. After calling for  the vote three separate times and discerning scarcely any difference between the  number of “ayes” and “nos”, Chairman Antonio Villaraigosa finally declared that  a 2/3 majority had voted in favor the amendment. The arbitrary ruling provoked a  chorus of “boos” throughout the Time Warner arena.

Despite attempts to dismiss this procedural phony baloney as a mere blip on  the screen, its significance cannot be overlooked. While a party’s platform  hardly determines how policy is crafted, it does stand as a symbol of the  principles and goals that guide it. An acknowledgment of God, no matter how  brief or in what context, communicates a posture of humility and gratitude to a  higher power for the blessings of liberty and opportunity that America enjoys.  And mention of Jerusalem as the capital city of Israel  sends a message to the rest of the world that America’s commitment to the  security and sovereignty of the Jewish state is unwavering.

Prominent Democrats have tried to assure the voting public that the omission  of these elements and the vote to reinsert them were no big deal, but this begs  the question: Who decided that these two little words needed to be removed when  they had been part of the Democrats’ platform for years, and why was the  platform amended to reinsert them if their removal was inconsequential?

For those Americans skeptical of the Democratic Party’s commitment to God or  Israel – or both – neither the omissions nor the 11th hour, Obama-mandated  reinsertion of these words came as a surprise. Staunch supporters of same-sex marriage and abortion on demand, the DNC worships at the altar of moral relativism and sexual  liberation. The God of the Bible… well, you decide. As for Israel, America’s  relationship with the Jewish state is more uncertain now than at any time in  recent history. While the President has not explicitly cast America’s support of  Israel into question, his administration’s actions in his first term have caused  many to doubt the White House’s commitment to this critical diplomatic  relationship. Many view the President’s fawning outreach to the Muslim world as  a gesture made at the expense of the America-Israel alliance. Add in a few  highly publicized criticisms of Israeli policy and it’s not hard to understand  why Barack Obama garners  less than 10% approval among Israeli Jews.

The DNC can whitewash the truth all it wants, but its little platform stunt  at the convention betrays a fundamental lack of integrity and a party whose  ideology is at odds with its politics. Belief in God and support for Israel is  smart politics – the President’s supporters in the Black and Hispanic  communities tend to be churchgoers, and everyone knows you can’t win Florida  without the Jewish vote – but these political positions are increasingly out of  step with the radical ideology that guides the party’s base.

Thus far, the President has been able to straddle the line between the  constituencies that make up his party. If the polls at this point are any  indication it is unlikely that a dubious record on the issue of faith will  dissuade minority voters from pulling the lever for Democrats in November, but  as tensions in the Middle East continue to mount this may not be the case for  Jewish voters. The DNC can only hope that nothing happens between now and  November that will compel the President to stake out a clear position one way or  the other. If it does, the architect of Hope and Change might end up a  one-termer.


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