SEPARATION OF CHURCH AND STATE: “The G.O.P.’s Assertive God Squad: Republicans, Evangelicals, Gays and Abortion”

Separation of Church and StateAnother presidential campaign is taking shape, and potential Republican candidates are beginning to speak with extra care — and sometimes with censorious hellfire — about certain social issues. As ever, they’re bowing to a bloc of voters described as Christian conservatives.

But these voters are a minority of Christians. They’re not such representative conservatives.

They have a disproportionate sway over the Republican Party. And because of that, they have an outsize influence on the national debate.

That’s an inescapable takeaway from new data compiled by the Public Religion Research Institute, a nonpartisan group that interviewed more than 50,000 Americans last year.

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