David Kuo served two-and-a-half years in the White House as a Special Assistant to Bush and Deputy Director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, resigned his post in December 2003 “with a statement that ‘Republicans were indifferent to the poor’ and that the White House had ‘minimal commitment’ to ‘compassionate conservatism’.”
And now he’s expanded that sentiment into a book: Tempting Faith: An Inside Story of Poltical Suduction.
If you want a not-so-brief polical history of David Kuo, Source Watch will fill your informational cup to the brim.
One thing I really appreciated from listening to his interview was his unapologetic seeking to submit to the authority of Jesus Christ and to fully adore Him. The main reason he stepped away from politics was that he could no longer tolerate being a part of what he feels is Our Lord’s Holy name being dragged through political mud.
In The New Republic Amy Sullivan speaks to the other side:
The problem is that Kuo’s book creates cognitive dissonance for liberals. Conspiracy theories about theocracy have haunted liberals for the last few years, and, if you believe that religious conservatives lead Bush around by the nose, evidence to the contrary is impossible to absorb. Everyone on the left “knows” that the faith-based initiative is a slush-fund, a jackpot for religious conservatives. If it turns out instead to be a political sham that produced only 1 percent of the new funds it promised for faith-based organizations, liberals need rethink their theocracy-phobia.
Andrew Sullivan gives out another Malkin award to this guy, David Contreras, Texas director of the Council on Faith in Action, who said, ” What David Kuo is saying about the President and his efforts is nothing more than a cynical attempt to sell books and line his pockets with 30 pieces of silver.”
Sullivan: So that makes Bush … Jesus?
Over at Street Prophets, Pastor Dan disagree’s with Amy Sullivan take on the blogoshere’s dissonance on Kuo but writes: “I also agree with Sullivan that Kuo’s revelations create an opening for Dems to reach out to people who feel like they’ve been sold down the river. I even agree with her that Dems and liberal movement-types could do a better job of capitalizing on that opportunity.”
For an example of that dissonance, see Talk to Action’s Frederick Clarkson’s self-described rant on Kuo in two parts.
Faithful Democrat’s doesn’t hold back, in fact, they released a statement saying in part:
“The sad truth is that our country’s leaders, especially those in the White House, appear to use faith almost solely as a political weapon. They don’t respect it. They don’t care about its capacity to improve people’s lives. They want power, period. And apparently, they are willing to manipulate religious voters and break the law in order to gain that power.”
Media Matters for America takes on Kuo’s critics and varifies the history of his relationship with the administration.
And finally, E. J. Dionne Jr. writes, “The very fact that it took David Kuo’s book, “Tempting Faith: An Inside Story of Political Seduction,” to put President Bush’s faith-based initiative back into the news proves that the author’s thesis is right.”