Second Coming: The New Christian Right in Virginia Politicsby Mark J. Rozell
By the early 1990s, the Christian Right was a force to be reckoned with in Virginia politics. In 1993, former Moral Majority leader Michael Farris won the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor. The following year, Oliver North became the party's candidate for U.S. senator. Both nominations were seen as undisputed evidence of the Christian Right's power in
By the early 1990s, the Christian Right was a force to be reckoned with in Virginia politics. In 1993, former Moral Majority leader Michael Farris won the Republican nomination for lieutenant governor. The following year, Oliver North became the party's candidate for U.S. senator. Both nominations were seen as undisputed evidence of the Christian Right's power in the state's Republican party. Yet, in those years of massive GOP landslides, both candidates lost their elections. These well-publicized campaigns set off bitter tensions between moderate Republicans and Christian social conservatives in Virginia and beyond--and raised new questions about the electability of candidates put forward by the Christian Right.
In Second Coming, Mark Rozell and Clyde Wilcox examine the role of the Christian Right in Virginia Republican politics. After the failures of the national organizations and campaigns of the Christian Right in the 1980s, the movement began focusing its attention on state and local politics. As the home state of the now-defunct Moral Majority and headquarters of the Christian Coalition, Virginia has one of the most visible and best organized Christian Right groups active today.
Building on a history of the Christian Right in Virginia from 1978 through 1992, Second Coming gives a detailed analysis of the 1993 statewide elections and the 1994 senatorial race, all of which attracted national attention. The authors draw on a wealth of sources--mail surveys from delegates to Republican state and national conventions, members of the Fairfax County Republican committee, and members of the Republican central committee; numerous in-person interviews of delegates at the1993 and 1994 state conventions; and more than 100 in-depth interviews with Virginia Republicans and Christian Right leaders and activists.
Second Coming places Virginia politics in a national context and offers a revealing look at the struggles between Republican party centrists and Christian Right activists. With the struggle for the 1996 Republican presidential nomination well under way, Rozell and Wilcox offer an invaluable primer on the workings of the Christian Right--how its members make their voices heard at party conventions, get out the conservative vote, and make their presence felt in elections with strength far beyond their numbers."
Second Coming provides a superb treatment of the Religious Right in its homeland, Virginia. Treating a single state in which it has had success, the authors explore the Religious Right in all its roles--as political movement, party faction, and interest group--and they focus on tensions within the movement between the more pragmatic and the more purist factions. This book is an essential work for anyone who wants to understand not just the Religious Right, but politics in the United States in the 1990's and beyond. I highly recommend it."--Ron Rapoport, College of William & Mary
"The Christian Right is a potent force in American politics, but nowhere more so than in the State of Virginia. Rozell and Wilcox have done an outstanding job in explaining the Christian Right: who they are; what they want; and why they'll be around for a long, long time."--Richard N. Bond, former chairman, Republican National Committee
"The 'Old Dominion' is the cradle of the Christian Right, being the home state of both Jerry Falwell and Pat Robertson. Rozell and Wilcox have provided a fascinating and highly readable case study of the movement on its own turf that reveals its origins, present power, and future prospects. The authors answer a pressing question: will the 'second coming' of the Christian Right be a brief visit or a longer stay?"--John C. Green, University of Akron
- Johns Hopkins University Press
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- Product dimensions:
- 6.31(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.13(d)
Meet the Author
Mark J. Rozell is research associate professor at the White Burkett Miller Center at the University of Virginia. His books include Executive Privilege: The Dilemma of Secrecy and Democratic Accountability, also available from Johns Hopkins.Clyde Wilcox is associate professor of government at Georgetown University. His books include God's Warriors: The Christian Right in Twentieth Century America, also available from Johns Hopkins.
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