Heaven's Slate

Is this a great idea or what? How about John McCain as a third-party candidate?

I mean, here he is, obviously doing everything he can to cater to Christian conservatives so they can resurrect his campaign (and yes, the pun was intentional).

His declaration that the United States is a Christian nation has been construed as the latest pandering to the fundamentalist right that did him in last time.

And now there are rumbles from some of those religious activists that they might abandon the Republicans and establish a third party if Rudy Giuliani or someone else unsuitable becomes the GOP candidate.

Who might that be? The very same John McCain who had earlier been deemed unworthy by the same people who are now worried that they may need their own guy. Politics does work in mysterious ways. How ironic it would be if this was the way a McCain candidacy was born again. (Yup, that was also intentional.)

As that beer ad says, this idea is "BRILLIANT!!!" Not that this group would be quoting beer commercials.

The point here is not to ridicule. A hallowed tradition in the U-S-of-A is that we can damn well believe what we want. Or not believe. As we've already seen, there has been far too much focus on the religion and alleged lack thereof in this election cycle. I thought JFK settled all that nearly 50 years ago. Apparently not.

How important is it whether Mitt Romney is a Mormon? Isn't it nice to know that he hasn't changed that belief?

Why does Hillary occasionally program into her remarks and responses reminders that she has faith? So what?

The real issue is whether the president will impose his or her dogma on all of us. That's been a persistent accusation against the current administration.

Perhaps this should be the question: Will a candidate's protestation of religion cause you to vote for or against him or her?

A third-party run might give us the most clear-cut way to decide whether we want an official Christian nation or a UNITED States of America.