Thursday, May 03, 2007

GOP candidates & evolution   posted by Razib @ 5/03/2007 08:54:00 PM

I don't follow politics, but I see via CNN that only 3 out of the 10 current GOP candidates reject evolution, Mike Huckabee, who is aiming for the social conservative vote, Tom Tancredo, a convert from Roman Catholicism to evangelical Christianity, and Sam Brownback, a convert from mainline Christianity to evangelical Christianity to Roman Catholicism who still attends Protestant services with his wife. So 7 out of 10 candidates for president from the party of choice of American theocrats accept evolution! What's going on here? I suspect this is reflecting SES & and the shallow roots of anti-evolutionary sentiment. In other words, I do believe that those who oppose evolutionary theory are sincere, but their attitude is simply a subsidiary of a host of positions which serve as notional markers for social conservatives. When push comes to shove cultural elites on the Right have generally balked at embracing Creationism, and this has been tolerated by the grassroots because it is a marginal issue. In contrast, 9 out of 10 candidates would not defend Roe vs. Wade, which suggests that opposition to abortion rights is a far deeper sentiment which elicits a stronger emotional valence.

Update: Jason Rosenhouse has a roundup of links. Jonah Goldberg says:
I know there are Intelligent Design fans among our readers, but I found the string of hands going up from candidates last night admitting they didn't believe in evolution to be more than a little dismaying. I'm sure they had very intelligent, nuanced, explanations. But that doesn't help that much as far as I'm concerned.

Clearly an out of touch Metrocon! Where's the love for democracy!

Meanwhile, Mike Huckabee clarifies. Pretty tepid a supporter of Creationism, he. Just goes to show a) the power of elites b) the lack of importance this issue for the grassroots, since he is focused on being the genuine conservative candidate.