“I happen to believe in something else,” Republican gubernatorial candidate Tom Tancredo told KNUS radio host Jimmy Sengenberger last month. “And that is, there is a plan for all of us. God has a plan. I happen to believe that, okay? Do you, Jimmy, believe that God knows who’s going to be the governor next time in Colorado?”
“God himself does,” Sengenberger replied. “We don’t. But God does.”
“God knows that, right,” said Tancredo. “He knows right now. Therefore, it’s in his hands, right? And I put it there. And I say to myself, ‘I will do everything I can do. I will work as hard as I can. I will be as available as I can. But at the end of the day, it’s in his hands, and it will be determined.’ And so I have to tell you this also. If it works out that I am not the candidate…it’s ok with me. I am at ease with it. I am at peace in my own heart, because, frankly, it’s the way it should be. God has a plan.”
I’m an atheist, and so I obviously don’t agree with Tancredo/Sengenberger that God has a plan, but I admire how Tanc’s belief manifests in a Buddha-like attitude toward his political campaign.
In any event, you realize, after hearing Tanc talk, how little media focus there’s been, in recent CO elections, on the personal religious beliefs or habits of candidates.
During the last election, we read in The Denver Post that Joe Coors was on the golf course in San Diego (16th hole) when God told him to “Go home. Go home.”
The personhood amendment, which would ban all abortion, even for rape, forces a discussion about when life begins and why–which can lead to religion–as we saw in the video of Rep. Cory Gardner saying he circulated personhood petitions in his church.
But the attitude among reporters seems to be that religion is somewhat off limits in political discourse these days, particularly beyond the broadest identifiers, unless it’s relevant to a specific point in a debate–about banning abortion, for example.
But I enjoyed hearing Tanc talk openly about God. It was illuminating. And I’m sure most people would like reporters to bring up the subject more often, maybe in the context of how religion does or doesn’t guide their actions and decision-making.