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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 9/1/12

Ralph Reed: From Purgatory to Power

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BILL MOYERS: After Republicans swept into control of the House in the 2010 mid-term elections, Reed called a press conference in Washington the very next day to claim bragging rights:

RALPH REEED: It was the most ambitious, the most comprehensive, and the most effective voter contact and get-out-the-vote effort aimed at the conservative faith community in modern American political history, or at least as long as I've been doing it, which is 30 years. Sixteen million voter guides. Eight million pieces of mail. Three pieces of mail to every social conservative household in certain areas. They received an average of three phone calls, and many of them received a knock on the door.

BILL MOYERS: They're also the voters Reed says he reached in Wisconsin earlier this year.

SCOTT WALKER: Thank you Wisconsin! Thank you, God bless you, God bless the great state of Wisconsin.

BILL MOYERS: When Republican Governor Scott Walker beat back the effort to recall him from office, Ralph Reed totaled up the numbers and announced that his Faith and Freedom Coalition had contacted over 600,000 voters.

Reed's funders -- whoever they are, for they're cloaked in secrecy -- are obviously buying into his promise that Wisconsin was batting practice for November.

FEMALE: I'm calling from the Faith and Freedom Coalition...

BILL MOYERS: When the Faith and Freedom Coalition claims it will reach 27 million conservative voters -- from the ranks of both the Religious Right and the Tea Party brigades -- with all the tools it can muster.

NARRATION: And just in case you haven't figured this out, there's one sure fire way to deal with elected officials who attack Christian beliefs and ignore the First Amendment: vote them out of office. On every government level: national, state, city, community, we'll have the opportunity to take our beliefs and values into the voting booth on November 6th and to vote accordingly.

BILL MOYERS: Earlier this summer, at the "Under God, Indivisible" rally in Texas, Reed told the crowd of six thousand to beg the Almighty's forgiveness for the state of the country...

RALPH REED: Then I believe in November, God is going to have mercy on our land and we will have a Renaissance of the values that made this country great.

BILL MOYERS: Music to Mitt Romney's ears.

MITT ROMNEY: Wow, look at this! This is an old-fashioned revival. I wore my jeans. Look at that, I wore my... [...] Ralph Reed is doing a great job here with the Faith and Freedom Coalition. This is going to make a big impact across America, and I appreciate the work that you are doing here.

BILL MOYERS: Romney needs Reed's blessing, because Romney's a Mormon. And a recent poll says his religion makes one in nearly every four white evangelicals uncomfortable. Romney can't lose them and still win in November. So Romney must bond with the Christian right.

MITT ROMNEY: Marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman.

BILL MOYERS: In Tampa, Reed called on the flock to do their part.

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Bill Moyers is President of the Schumann Center for Media and Democracy.

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