By Dan Gilgoff, God & Country
It seems out of vogue for Democratic politicians to bang the drum on hot-button social issues and to bash the religious right while campaigning for office. Those tactics hail from the party's pre-2004 playbook, right?
Not in New Jersey. Culture war issues loomed large in Garden State Gov. Jon Corzine's victory speech last night after he handily won the Democratic nomination for a second term. (Vice President Joe Biden was at the victory event, which tells you that Corzine has a serious general election fight on his hands.)
Check out this excerpt:
Now we all know, there is much at stake in this election.
New Jersey Democrats believe that America is stronger because of its diversity.
We're proud that our state has always welcomed immigrants . . . and we know they enrich our lives and our culture.
We trust women to make their own health care decisions.
We believe that government should allow people the freedom to marry whomever they love.
While we believe in the right to bear arms, we do think that buying one gun a month should suffice.
Our opponents disagree.
They say that government should be small.
Small enough to slip under your bedroom door.Small enough to root for a new president to fail.
Narrow enough to divide us by gender and ethnicity over a Supreme Court nominee.
Self-righteous enough to dictate their own religious beliefs to the rest of us on stem cell research . . . family planning . . . and even science curricula.
We must be bigger than that.
Is this a sign that culture war issues have started cutting for the Democratic Party? I don't think so. Just a sign that a Republican gubernatorial candidate has become competitive in a deep blue state.