The way the Bush administration operates

"By their deeds shall you know them."


* Home
* Ethics and
family values
* The lies that got
us into the war
* Dishonest politics
* Suppression
* Suppression of dis-
sent breeds incom-
petence in war
* Tampering with the
regulatory process
* Dealings with the world
* Secrecy
* Widespread
misuse of science
* What they do counts,
not what they say
* Other websites

Soliciting churches for membership lists

In Spring 2004, the Bush-Cheney campaign in Pennsylvania attempted to obtain the membership lists of 1,600 conservative churches so that the Bush-Cheney campaign could contact the membership of the churches and encourage them to vote for Bush-Cheney.

The Bush-Cheney campaign defended the action.


"Our nation has always been guided by a moral compass.  In every generation men and women have protested terrible wrongs and worked for justice." George W. Bush. Independence Day Celebration, July 2001.

"America rejects bigotry. ... Every faith is practiced and protected here, because we are one country." George W. Bush. Parkside Hall, San Jose, California April 30, 2002.

Volunteers for the Bush-Cheney campaign were expected to send their church directories to the Bush-Cheney campaign. Other duties included:

  1. Identify another conservative church in your community who we can organize for Bush.

  2. By Sunday, September 17, all non-registered church members must be registered to vote.

  3. Distribute voter guides in your church.

  4. Get-out-the-vote program in your church —place reminder bulletins about all Christian citizens needing to vote in Sunday program or on a board near the church entrance.

It must be known by the Bush-Cheney administration that any church that gives its membership list to a political party is violating the law and can lose their tax-exempt status. Further, an individual who did it would be violating the trust of their fellow church members, just as it would be inappropriate to share the membership list with a marketing group.

Attempting to get these membership lists is unethical and can be seen as trying to coerce religion for political gain. Nonetheless, the Bush-Cheney campaign defends this action.

Some Christian leaders have written letters to the Bush-Cheney administration, telling them how bad this is.

Do you see the message in their instructions? Christian citizens need to vote —presumably, others don't. The only moral that this administration seems to recognize is political expediency.

Here are websites that discuss the issue:

  1. US Newswire
  2. The Baptist Message Online was appalled. Onew spokeperson called it a "shameless attempt to misuse and abuse churches for partisan political ends."
  3. The Baptist Joint Committee on Public Affairs discusses the issue.
  4. The Interfaith Alliance has warned churches to be aware legal and ethical violations if they give address lists to the Bush-Cheney campaign.
  5. Southern Baptist church-state specialist Richard Land is appalled at these moves by the Bush-Cheney campaign.