The controversial “Religious New Right” formed a crucial part of the Reagan coalition and helped transform the political life of several regions. Though it failed to produce a viable presidential candidate in the 1980s, its power is still very much in evidence. The movement could rightly boast of many platform victories at the 1992 Republican party convention in Houston.
In this provocative collection nine distinguished observers give their assessments of what the Religious New Right has achieved and what its potential is for the rest of this decade. Historian George Marsden of Notre Dame, sociologist Robert Wuthnow of Princeton, and political scientists Robert Booth Fowler of the University of Wisconsin and Corwin Smidt of Calvin College ponder its past and future from their varying perspectives. Five other scholars—James L. Guth, Carl F. H. Henry, James Davison Hunter, Grant Wacker, and George Weigel—offer challenging responses, and nine prominent activists and experts add insightful comments.