Tea Party politics and Christianity: Strange bedfellows?

The Tea Party movement became an influential force in electoral politics in 2010 as it channeled widespread populist anger over the weak economy and a host of other issues, such as taxes, immigration and the role of government. But how friendly is the Tea Party to Christian ideals, especially those embraced by Christian conservatives?

While the Tea Party is widely characterized as a conservative movement, it is fueled by a reservoir of libertarianism that often puts economic conservatism over social conservatism. Many self-described Tea Party activists and leaders say they do not want to expend energy and resources fighting against gay marriage and abortion rights, for example, while others say that the movement is a natural ally for the religious right.

The differences have sparked an intense debate about the identity of the Tea Party movement, the role and influence of Christian conservatives in politics today, and what the conservatism of the future will look like.



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