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The Christian Left: “We’re Just Christians who think the political and Christian right-wing have their priorities wrong.”

During every Republican (GOP) Presidential Race, all candidates try to win the hearts of the far right or conservative Christian groups and voters. Part of their tactics is the alignment of their agendas on what conservative Christians believe from economic, political and especially social issues like immigration, health care, and same sex relationships. But in 2016, the conservatives will no longer have that “monopoly.” Presidential hopefuls will also need to consider The Christian Left.

The Christian Left is part of the progressive Christian movement in the U.S. The group is founder by Charles Toy and is now composed of more than 200,000 members and the numbers keep on growing. The Christian Left simply describes itself in the following phrases “We’re not about Dogma here. We’re just Christians who think the political and Christian right-wing have their priorities wrong.”

The group can be considered as the liberal counterpart of the right-wing Christians. Instead of interpreting the Bible in its literal and strictest sense, the group accordingly focuses on the central tenets of the Bible which commands every individual to “Love God and his neighbor.” The group advocates for social justice and has a progressive or liberal outlook even in the hotly debated issues like abortion, third sex or gay rights, human rights, immigration, etc.

The Christian Left criticizes GOP candidates who have conflicting personal views from their political agendas. For example; candidates claiming to want to help the poor as what Jesus have done eventually want to make cuts on government spending for social services. There are also those who are against immigration when in fact the Bible teaches everyone to help and welcome strangers or to “love thy neighbors.” Additionally, candidates often use Bible texts as an excuse for discriminating gays and women.

At the moment, the group has no official candidate yet. They will not only focus their attention to the GOP candidates. The democrats and all other hopefuls shall be critiqued or examined as well. According to Toy “Our members are more concerned with living out the Gospel – particularly our obligation to the poor and oppressed – then to any political party.”

One of its founding members, Rev. Mark Sandlin, added that “In the end, no one from The Christian Left is going to tell you that you cannot be a good Christian if you vote for or against one candidate. What we will do is push hard to make sure progressive Christians voices are heard and counted to help move the nation in a more compassionate direction.”

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