Rick Perry’s presidential campaign is stumbling, but the folks behind his prayer extravaganza in a Houston football stadium last August seem to be marching on. An email from organizers of The Response today invites folks to a South Carolina prayer rally on January 17 — just four days before that state’s Republican presidential primary.
In fact, The Response organizers have planned all of their post-Houston events for early Republican presidential caucus and primary states. One was in Iowa on December 6, less than a month before that state’s party caucuses. A January 24 Florida rally is scheduled a week before that state’s presidential primaries. And organizers are planning an event in Arizona for February — Republicans go to the polls there on February 28.
Organizers haven’t set specific dates for events in the March GOP primary and caucus states of Washington, Tennessee, Georgia, Kansas, Missouri and Ohio. Those are all listed as “pending.” Perhaps they think the Republican nomination will be settled by then.
You will recall that the Houston rally came just a week before Gov. Perry formally announced his bid for the Republican presidential nomination.
Yet here is what we see posted on The Response website:
“In August 2011, The Response gathered 40,000 people in Houston, TX as well as 100,000 unique sites that joined via simulcast to respond to the trumpet call to prayer. Though Governor Rick Perry initiated The Response in Houston, these upcoming state-wide gatherings will not be affiliated with any particular presidential candidates. The Response is committed to prayer above politics, to seeing the church moved to stand for righteousness and to pray for God’s mercy for America.”
“Committed to prayer above politics.” Yeah, sure. We must have missed the obscure Bible verse that instructs us to pray according to the Republican presidential primary schedule.