No religious right yet
The UK is not following in the footsteps of the US and forging a ‘religious right’, the Theos think-tank has claimed.
In a 96-page report, Is there a religious right emerging in Britain?, author Andy Walton says such claims are inaccurate and inflammatory.
The report highlighted that recent high-profile campaigns, such as the Coalition For Marriage, have encouraged some commentators to reach for the phrase ‘US-style religious right’ to describe changes in the British political and religious landscape.
However, the report says that, while there is evidence of greater coordination among socially conservative Christians, it is misleading to describe this phenomenon as a US-style religious right.
Mr Walton said, ‘The British theological and political context is just too different from the American one for us to see the same kind of “religious right” emerging here, at least for the foreseeable future.
‘For a start, the number of committed Christians is much smaller; religion plays a less important part in their voting patterns; and Christian organisations have significantly less access to political power than in America.
‘More importantly, however, committed believers tend to be economically left-of-centre and there are no signs of believers favouring one political party for their agenda, as happened in America’.