Dahlia Lithwick thinks there’s a confusion between religion and politics implicit in the DoJ brouhaha.
Is there anything wrong with legal scholarship from a Christian perspective? Not that I see. Is there anything wrong with a Bush administration that disproportionately uses graduates from Christian law schools to fill its staffing needs? Not that I see. It’s a shorthand, no better or worse than cherry-picking the Federalist Society or the American Bar Association. I can’t even get exercised over the fact that Gonzales, Karl Rove and Harriet Miers had their baby lawyers making critical staffing decisions. The baby lawyers had extremely clear marching orders.
No, the real concern here is that Goodling and her ilk somehow began to conflate God’s work with the president’s. Probably not a lesson she learned in law school. The dream of Regent and its counterparts, such as Jerry Falwell’s Liberty University, is to redress perceived wrongs to Christians, to reclaim the public square and reassert Christian political authority. And while that may have been a part of the Bush/Rove plan, it was only a small part. Their real zeal was for earthly power. And Goodling was left holding the earthly bag.
In the end, Goodling and the other young foot soldiers for God may simply have run afoul of the first rule of politics, codified in Psalm 146: "Put not your trust in princes, in mere mortals in whom there is no help."
Turns out that there’s insufficient religious zeal--and too much politics--in the White House, which isn’t the line we were hearing a couple of years ago. People are longing for the good old days of John Ashcroft, "a devout Pentecostal who forbade use of the word "pride," as well as the phrase "no higher calling than public service," on documents bearing his signature."
If you want to read more about Goodling, go here.