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Thursday, November 02, 2006
Pity the beleaguered followers of the pooh-bahs of the religious right. No, your blogstress is not being snide or facetious; she truly does ask her reader to gently consider the fate of a people so betrayed by their leaders that they find themselves with no one to follow.
As if the Mark Foley scandal was not enough, or the Ralph Reed scandal, or the involvement of Dr. James Dobson in the Ralph Reed scandal, or the revelation by former White House staffer David Kuo of the administration's contempt for religious right leaders (known as "nuts" around the West Wing), today brings word of accusations against the president of the National Association of Evangelicals that he is gay, pays for sex and sniffs meth.
The accusations against Rev. Ted Haggard, pastor of the 14,000-member Life Ministries Church of Colorado Springs, aired last night, were made to a Denver television reporter by admitted "escort" Mike Jones, who claims Haggard as a "sexual business" client for the last three years. 9NEWS reporter Paula Woodward says she has been talking to Jones for the last two months.
Though not a household name in the reality-based community, Haggard is a member of the inner circle of religious leaders who advise the White House via weekly conference calls. Jeff Sharlet, in Harper's magazine, finds Haggard's power within the movement comparable to that of Dobson, who leads the vast Focus on the Family empire.
With two measures on the Colorado ballot next week regarding gay marriage, there's a heavy dose of politics in the Jones accusations. Haggard has promised an "independent investigation" by members of his church, and swears that he has been faithful to his wife. Stay tuned.