“The Senators and Representatives before mentioned, and the Members of the several State Legislatures, and all executive and judicial Officers, both of the United States and of the several States, shall be bound by Oath or Affirmation, to support this Constitution; but no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any office or public trust under the United States.”
— Article VI, Paragraph 3, U.S. Constitution
Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker has had a tough time of it in recent days.
He sat in the room when former New York City Mayor Rudy Guiliani questioned whether President Obama loved America. Walker didn’t refute the ex-mayor’s nonsense.
Then came a question about whether President Obama is a Christian — as if that even is relevant to any discussion about anyone on Earth, let alone the president of the United States. Walker said he didn’t know, offering some lame notion that he’s never discussed Obama’s faith with him.
I hereby refer to the U.S. Constitution’s Article VI. See the above text.
Right there is all the evidence I need that this discussion has no place in today’s political discourse.
But yet it keeps coming back, particularly as we reference the current president. Why is that?
Has anyone ever wondered aloud whether any of the men who preceded Obama were Christian? Why didn’t Walker swat that idiotic question aside by saying something like:
“That question is irrelevant. You’ve never asked such a thing of George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, Ronald Reagan, Jimmy Carter, Gerald Ford, Richard Nixon, Lyndon Johnson, John Kennedy … none of them. Barack Obama’s faith is his personal business and the fact that he’s had to speak about it all — and he’s declared his belief in Jesus Christ as his Savior — is because the media and the president’s foes keep bringing it up.
A president’s faith — or the faith of anyone seeking public office — according to the nation’s founders, is of zero consequence. Does that mean a candidate should necessarily hide his faith from public view? Of course not. Candidates are free to proclaim whatever they wish to proclaim and if their religious faith informs how they set public policy, that should be a factor that voters should consider.
However, the Constitution expressly declares that there should be “no religious test” that candidates for public office must pass.
Let’s focus fully instead on policies that affect people’s lives.