As the Republican Party searches for a future leader, former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich pops up on the short lists.
Gingrich has kept fairly quiet about his recent conversion to Catholicism, but today he spoke to Christianity Today about his faith, the future leaders and constituencies of the Republican Party, and where the fights on same-sex marriage and abortion currently stand.
As the Republican Party tries to redefine itself before the next presidential election, where will evangelicals fit? Are they seen as a prominent part of the party or just one constituency?
I think they are a very significant constituency of the party, and I think the kind of issues that an Obama administration is likely to create, and the kind of things we're seeing in places like Connecticut, where two legislators introduced legislation that would in effect abolish the Catholic Church, the attack on the conscience clause that permits Catholics and evangelicals and Orthodox Jewish doctors to not perform abortions ... on a number of fronts, I think you're likely to see a number of groups beyond just evangelicals who are very, very likely to play an important role.
Can you give a political assessment of where we are headed on abortion and same-sex marriage?
I think on traditional marriage, it's likely to be a long, complex struggle with the courts making it, I think, worse, because they are intervening without regard to popular opinion. On the case of right-to-life, I think the cause of the right-to-life community is gaining ground, because I think as people look at more and more advanced technology, all of the underlying assumptions that were at the heart of Roe v. Wade simply fall apart. Roe v. Wade is based on viability of life, and life, ...