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June 7, 2006

Religion and politics mix on the left

Posted by David Postman at 9:05 AM

Much has been made of the involvement of local churches in Tim Eyman's anti-gay rights measure. But politics and religion don't just mix on the right. Apparently black politicians, who in Washington state are predominately Democrats, must cultivate the pulpit and the pews to be successful.

In the Seattle Weekly Mike Seely profiles Darryl Smith and includes this from Ron Sims:

"People think because you're black, you're going to get elected. But I don't know where Darryl's church base is, and in this city, you'd better have a home church. The people in the black community who vote are in a church. That is the tie that binds people."

And this from consultant George Griffin:

"I guess the litmus test for me with Darryl is when I asked him if he knew any of the African-American pastors in town and he said, 'No, I'm Buddhist,'" says Griffin. "I said, 'Hell, I'm Catholic, but I know all the black pastors.' So I've always felt he didn't really have a lot of the connections you need if you're going to run for office."

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