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McCain and Hagee: Still Joined at the Hip by Joe Lieberman

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“I am your brother Joseph,” proclaimed Joe Lieberman to the controversial end-times pastor, John Hagee from the podium at the annual Christian’s United for Israel Conference in Washington, D.C. on July 22, 2008. For Lieberman, it was the second time in as many years that he likened the politically connected pastor to Moses. "Like Moses," stated the senator in 2007, "He's (Hagee) become the leader of a mighty multitude even greater than the multitude that Moses led from Egypt to the Promised Land."

Who is the real John Hagee and why does he still matter? Until his recent endorsement of, and subsequent distancing by, John McCain few outside the world of apocalyptic thinking knew of him. Proclaiming himself to be the penultimate defender of Israel and thus the Jewish people, Hagee’s motives came into public question when two his incendiary quotes surfaced; one calling the Catholic Church the “Great prostitute, the other suggesting Nazis were God’s plan to corral the Jews into the biblically mandated Israeli territories in order to facilitate the Second Coming.

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In many respects, these two statements reflect the least of the Hagee problem, a problem on which few have yet focused.

John Hagee, a mega-televangelist with a worldwide audience numbering in the many millions , has carefully developed and nurtured the most powerful of political connections Speaking to Terry Gross on June 3, 2008, Bush former Press Secretary Scott McClellan admitted that (Hagee was) one of a number of evangelical pastors, social conservatives that had a heavy influence on some of the White House policies. . . . (Hagee) was able to quickly get someone on the phone at the White House.” Shocking words when you consider that Hagee’s prime objective is to hasten the end of the world as we know it.

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Powerful political connections, in and of themselves, are hardly illegal. But when men of the so-called cloth use their immense collective voting bloc to directly influence foreign policy, when a phone call to the right person introduces political pressure and an instantaneous “Call to Action” mobilizes tens of thousands of constituents to contact their congressional leader, a line has been crossed.

As John Hagee, Rod Parsley, Rick Santorum and Gary Bauer and countless other religious and political figures crisscross the nation preaching the need to rid the world of Islam and later meet with elected officials regarding their desires towards Iran, a line has been crossed. These are not elected officials. They have no right to trade votes for foreign policy actions.

This begs the question, why is Senator Joe Lieberman so enamored of John Hagee? Is he merely playing his Zionist right hand, all the while knowing Hagee to be a fool? Or is the former Democratic turncoat willingly serving as proxy for John McCain? That John McCain, having publicly distanced himself from Hagee, has not honestly broken with him? It makes political sense that in exchange for the evangelical vote, Joe Lieberman stands proudly in McCain’s stead, signaling to Hagee’s minions, have no fear, we continue to have McCain’s ear. Whatever Jilted Joe’s motives, the public message he has chosen to telegraph is that he is in complete and total sync with John Hagee.

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To witness the tightness of the McCain, Hagee, Lieberman triangle is to understand how deeply embedded in our political fabric End Times theology has become. And this, fellow rationalists, is the great untold story.

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Marji Mendelsohn has been studying the effects of religion on politics and foreign policy with a secondary interest in election fraud.

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