The anti-Romney won’t be anointed in Brenham

Mitt Romney

UPDATE: In a surprise move, the group meeting in Brehnam has voted to get behind Rick Santorum.

Last week we told you how leaders from the religious right planned to gather in Brenham, Texas, this weekend and attempt to unite behind a more socially conservative (and non-Mormon) alternative to Mitt Romney in the GOP presidential race. Well, it turns out they’ve given up on reaching a consensus until after the South Carolina and Florida primaries. The New York Times reports:

Scores of politically influential evangelicals plan to attend the meeting, but the original dream of coalescing around one candidate of the religious right — Newt Gingrich, Rick Santorum or Rick Perry — is unrealistic for now, several leaders said in interviews this week. If one of those candidates surges in South Carolina, or in the Florida primary on Jan. 31, pressure will grow on the others to step back, the leaders said.

“Any talk of winnowing out the field is premature until after South Carolina,” said Richard Land, the president of the public policy arm of the Southern Baptist Convention. “The best thing that can happen for social conservatives is for one candidate to get a very clear mandate from South Carolina voters. If that happens, you might be able to get a consensus that makes a difference.”

—  John Wright

Southern Baptists: Proposal to repeal DADT based on 'indulging strong sexual desires'

Richard Land
Richard Land

Not surprisingly, the Southern Baptist Convention has approved a resolution opposing the repeal of “don’t ask don’t tell.”

Richard Land, president of the SBC’s Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission, told those attending the denomination’s annual meeting in Florida this week that repealing DADT would “destroy” the military, according to the Associated Press.

“I’m told that there will be massive resignations … if we try to impose this social experiment on our military forces when we’re in the middle of two wars.” Land says in a video from the meeting posted on the SBC website. “We will end up with a military that will have a higher than national percentage homosexual population rather than a lower than national percentage homosexual population, and it will lead to discord and disharmony in the ranks, and it will destroy the finest fighting force that the world has ever known.”

The Baptist Press notes that Land also talked about the church’s efforts to defend Proposition 8, California’s same-sex marriage ban.

The SBC resolution opposing DADT states that,”No government should implement standards or policies regulating the lives of military personnel based on nothing other than indulging sexual desires, however strong …”

—  John Wright