This Week in God
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In the last TWIG edition until the new year, the God Machine took note of E.J. Dionne Jr.'s column this week on the ways in which religion and politics didn't cause as big a stir as in previous years.
It is 2009's quiet story -- quiet because it's about what didn't happen, which can be as important as what did.
In this highly partisan year, we did not see a sharpening of the battles over religion and culture.
Yes, we continued to fight over gay marriage, and arguments about abortion were a feature of the health-care debate. But what's more striking is that other issues -- notably economics and the role of government -- trumped culture and religion in the public square. The culture wars went into recession along with the economy.
Steve Benen is "blogger in chief" of the popular Washington Monthly online blog, Political Animal . His background includes publishing The Carpetbagger Report, and writing for a variety of publications, including Talking Points Memo, The American Prospect, the Huffington Post, and The Guardian. He has also appeared on NPR's "Talk of the Nation," MSNBC's "Rachel Maddow Show," Air America Radio's "Sam Seder Show," and XM Radio's "POTUS '08."