And as boring as the news coverage of the primaries
seems to be, underneath it all the democratic process
is at work. In the midst of all that ennui we are quick
to admit that this is the best way to choose a leader,
and we would not have it any other way.

Just for your record: here is a brief schedule of the
upcoming primary elections, and the issue of this news
letter which will comment on those elections. Jan. 15
-- Michigan Primary, reported on in current issue;
Jan. 19 -- South Carolina Republican Primary,
and Nevada Caucus, reported on in Jan. 23 issue;
Jan. 26 -- South Carolina Democrat Primary,
reported on in Jan 30 issue; Feb. 2 -- Maine Caucus,
Feb. 5 -- “Super Tuesday,” (when at least 23 states
will vote), reported on in Feb. 6 issue. By that date it is
possible that both parties’ candidates may be chosen --
but, very frankly, it is also reasonable to admit that the
races are so close that the final decisions may not be
reached until this Summer’s party conventions.

This headline has been repeated often following
the nation’s first primary in New Hampshire on Jan. 8:
“Polls Miss the Mark in New Hampshire
Primary.” It speaks from the vantage point of actual
experience as what we have often said: “Ignore the polls!”
The only “poll” that has any meaning is the actual count
of the votes after each primary election.

Similarly, ignore predictions as to winners of the various
primary elections -- or as to who will be the final
candidates of each political party. Predictions are
nothing more than guesses, and the gift of ESP is as
yet an unproven talent. So together we will consider
each step of the process, and will always try to keep
foremost in our minds what is best for our nation.

After the New Hampshire primary, at least one major
editorial carried the heading, “Cue the Clowns.” One
is immediately reminded of Stephen Sondheim’s song
in the musical “A Little Night Music,” and the words
are very clearly appropriate: “But where are the clowns?
Quick, send in the clowns. Don’t bother, they’re here.”
The media and pollsters involved in the primary in
New Hampshire certainly merited that description.

With all those thoughts in mind, we have before
us the results of yesterday’s Michigan primary election.
To begin with, this was a totally different situation from
the New Hampshire primary. On the Democrat side it
was a “no contest” affair. No delegates were at stake,
and due to internal problems, the primary vote for
Democrats was essentially cancelled. Barack Obama
and John Edwards, for example, complied with the
party’s rules and withdrew their names. But Hillary
Clinton and Dennis Kucinich left their names on the
ballot, and so Senator Clinton was essentially running
against no one. Of course, she “won” but her 56% of
the Democrat vote fell far short of a sweep, since about
39% of the Democrat votes were for “Uncommitted,”
with about 4% for Kucinich, who for some reason is
still on the Democrat ballot.

On the Republican side, there was no clear-cut winner
predicted in the pre-primary polls. It was clearly seen as
a close three way contest between Romney, McCain and
Huckabee, and the results proved to be just that, with
Mitt Romney as a favorite sn winning with 39% of the
vote, a 9% margin over John McCain at 30%, and Mike
Huckabee in third place at 16%.

Thus the three top Republican contenders each have a
real win: Huckabee in Iowa, McCain in New Hampshire
and Romney in Michigan.

Now the focus shifts to Nevada’s Caucus and South
Carolina‘s Republican primary on Saturday.

This is still not the time to speculate or predict, but
rather it is still the time to allow the process to take its
course, and leave the soothsaying to the pollsters who
get paid for making those kinds of guesses.

From the Evangelical viewpoint, our choices are
still a bit less desirable than we might want. Right now,
as we move through the primary elections, we are
forced to admit that our present political system has
failed to offer us a candidate which we can accept with
no compromise on one position or another. We still
want a candidate whose moral values we can support
without any hesitation. There are certain basic elements
to which we are committed -- the ceasing of the killing
of unborn children, the preservation of the traditional
concept of marriage and family, restoration of the First
Amendment right of freedom of worship without any
restriction on expressions of the Christian faith, and a
national resolve to provide compassion and justice for
the poor and oppressed, at home and throughout the
World, plus the seemingly never ending pursuit of peace.

The Founding Fathers defined political campaigns
like we are seeing between Hillary Clinton and Barack
Obama, as we note in this quote from John Adams in
1826: "Public affairs go on pretty much as usual:
Perpetual chicanery and rather more personal abuse
than there used to be... Our American Chivalry is the
worst in the world. It has no Laws, no bounds, and no
definitions; it seems to be all a Caprice."

Afterthoughts . . .

Rewards for poor performance: despite holding
the lowest public approval rating in history (only about
half of the president’s approval rating) Congress has
rewarded itself with a pay raise of $4,100 over the
salary they have been paid since Jan. 2006, according
to a report in the Federal Register for January 8. There
has to be something of interest to American taxpayers
somewhere in that report. And this is an election year.

It could happen here: A Christian employee of
British Airways was sent home from work because she
was wearing a necklace with a cross. She sued the
company, but lost her case in court. Employees who
follow other religions are permitted faith related
items , including clothing, jewelry and religious
markings. The girl’s attorney made this comment:
"No Christian should be forced to hide her faith in
the workplace, particularly when a double-standard
exists targeting only Christians for discriminatory
treatment. This case should be of particular interest
to the American customers of British Airways who
understand and value religious liberty."

Another “2007 List” -- in addition to the other lists
of interesting events for the year 2007, here is another
List of “7 Top Christian Bashings,“ compiled by Dr.
Gary Cass, Chairman of the Christian Anti-Defamation
Commission, released last week by Christian Newswire.
No.1: Colorado Church Murders; No. 2: Federal Hate
Crimes Bill; No. 3: San Francisco’s Folsom Street Fair;
No. 4: The attacks on Jerry Falwell on CNN; No. 5:
CNN’s anti Christian documentaries, “God’s Warriors,”
and “Friends Of God;” No. 6: John Edwards’ campaign
supporters whose Blogs called Christian supporters of
President Bush his “wing nut Christofascist base;” No. 7:
the movie “Golden Compass.” Worth thinking about.

Who can say if endorsements help or hurt? The
disclosure this past week that the two top Democrat
candidates had picked up celebrity endorsers raises
that question. Senator John Kerry announced his
support for Barack Obama, and Madeline Albright,
former Secretary of State, announced her support for
Hillary Clinton. Do those help or hurt? Hard to say.

An important announcement: America's Truth
Forum, in association with Basics Project, has just
announced the third in the national symposium series
on the threat of radical Islam, “Exposing the Threat
of Islamist Terrorism,” scheduled for February 1 & 2
in the Dallas/Ft. Worth, TX area. The wording of the
announcement is worth presenting here: “As the 2008
presidential elections heat up it is clear that America
and the world need for the American people to be
sufficiently educated about the dangers of the 21st
century that arise from the global jihad... America’s
Truth Forum upcoming symposium will provide an
essential service to the public... America’s Truth
Forum & Basics Project will provide the public with
an opportunity to learn about what the media doesn’t
report...Only by understanding these dangers will
the American people be able to ensure that the next
president will be a leader who understands and is
committed to defending the United States and the
rest of the Free World against the threat posed by
the forces of jihad at home and around the world.”
NOTE: We will diligently report on this conference.

The Founding Fathers were aware of this kind of
threat to our nation: "We have no government armed
with power capable of contending with human
passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice,
ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the
strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes
through a net. Our Constitution was made only for
a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate
to the government of any other." - John Adams, 1798
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