The Faith Of George W. Bush,
by Stephen Mansfield
(Click for Amazon book review)
OnTheIssues.org BOOK REVIEW:
This book is about George W. Bush's faith as a candidate and president, but also about the faith of George H. W. Bush, the father. The two are intertwined, of course, since Bush Sr. chose Bush Jr.'s early church experiences. But the book outlines how their presidential politics continued that intertwining in adulthood.
The author claims (p. xiv) to have written this book because "the matter of his religious faith… is another likely pillar of George W. Bush's legacy." While that is not true for Bush Sr., the author does spend a lot of ink on the earlier president too. The author details (p. 19) how Bush Sr. considered his faith to be "personal", while Bush Jr., as indicated by the quote above, considered his faith to be a critical component of his policymaking.
This book is the first of a series by Stephen Mansfield on the faith of presidents and presidential candidates. Mansfield later authored The Faith of Barack Obama (2008) and The Faith and Values of Sarah Palin (2010). Mansfield also writes faith-oriented biographies about non-politicians; but we hope he continues this insightful series on many more candidates.
-- Jesse Gordon, editor-in-chief, OnTheIssues.org, October 2011
| OnTheIssues.org excerpts: (click on issues for details)
George W. Bush: 1994 Gov. race: toughen up juvenile justice.
George W. Bush: 150 death-row executions during Bush's term.
George Bush Sr.: Did not drink much, but not a teetotaler.
George W. Bush: 1985: Stopped drinking when reconfigured by deepening faith.
Energy & Oil|
George Bush Sr.: 1948: Moved to TX for oil, instead of family's Wall Street.
Families & Children|
George Bush Sr.: Bush family motto: Do The Right Thing.
George W. Bush: 1988: actively safeguarded against rumors about women.
George Bush Sr.: Resigned from Trilateral Commission during V.P. campaign.
George W. Bush: Support for Israel tied evangelicals to Jewish community.
George Bush Sr.: Lost a daughter at age 3 to leukemia.
Principles & Values|
Al Gore: OpEd: voters preferred moral compass to immoral brilliance.
George Bush Sr.: Emotions and religion are personal, not for the public.
George Bush Sr.: 1987: "Wimp Factor": hesitant, aristocratic style.
George Bush Sr.: 1988: "Man of Integrity": campaign bio for religious voters.
George W. Bush: OpEd: Baby-boomer with an upper-class twist.
George W. Bush: OpEd: Undiagnosed dyslexic; hence connects non-verbally.
George W. Bush: Laura drew George into her Methodist church.
George W. Bush: 1984: I want to know Jesus and follow him.
George W. Bush: OpEd: Baseball inspires Bush; it's his natural religion.
George W. Bush: Speaks openly of religion, but so have all presidents.
George W. Bush: OpEd: Remembered for 9/11 and religious faith.
Jimmy Carter: Openly a Born-Again Christian.
John Ashcroft: 1999: Americans have no king but Jesus.
Ronald Reagan: Not first religious president but first hero to evangelicals.
Ronald Reagan: Jesus is more real to me than my mother.
War & Peace|
Jimmy Carter: Afghan & Iraq invasions were not "Just Wars".
Welfare & Poverty|
Al Gore: Fund faith-based groups with federal & corporate dollars.
George Bush Sr.: 1,000 points of light: volunteerism against social ills.
George W. Bush: TX first: religious charities delivering welfare services.
Newt Gingrich: Echoed Bush's "Thousand Points of Light".
The above quotations are from The Faith Of George W. Bush,
by Stephen Mansfield.
Political Biographies focusing on Faith:
- God and Hillary Clinton, by Paul Kengor
- The FAITH of Barack Obama, by Stephen Mansfield, Aug. 2008
- The Mormon Faith of Mitt Romney, by Andrew Jackson, Dec. 25, 2011
- The Faith of Condoleezza Rice, by Leslie Montgomery
- The Faith of George W. Bush, by Stephen Mansfield
- The Faith & Values of Sarah Palin, by Stephen Mansfield, Oct, 2010
- Rediscovering God in America, by Newt Gingrich
- Faith of My Fathers, by John McCain