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Among those coming from this tradition, he says, were presidents Franklin D. Former President Jimmy Carter is one, and experts say President Bush fits the profile of an evangelical Christian, although Bush doesn’t describe himself as such.Experts say their influence has been notable on human rights issues over the past ten years and is growing."Evangelicals," Mead writes, "have given new energy and support to U. humanitarian efforts under President Bush." Evangelicals generally view the Middle East through a biblical prism and thus are staunch supporters of Israel, experts say.Richard Land, head of the Southern Baptist Convention’s public policy arm, said at a CFR meeting in September 2005 that his group does not "give blind acceptance of everything that the state of Israel does or has done." But he added: "I think it’s safe to say that a significant majority of the people who identify themselves as evangelicals believe that God gave the land of Israel to the Jews ...Derived from the Greek word meaning "good news," the term "evangelical" took on broad significance when it was adopted by followers of Martin Luther after the Protestant Reformation. evangelicals today follow in the tradition of Billy Graham and Carl Henry, leaders who gained prominence in the mid-twentieth century by promoting activism in spreading the faith, as well as engagement with other religions to improve human welfare.Evangelical Protestantism was the dominant form of Christianity in the early years of the United States and remained a strong part of American culture into the twentieth century. Experts say a common misperception is to equate evangelicals with fundamentalist Christians.Evangelicals are prominent among the groups that have pressed administrations since the Reagan presidency to withhold funding for population programs that permit abortion.CFR Senior Fellow Walter Russell Mead writes in the latest that the worldview of U. politicians tended to be dominated by liberal Protestantism during World War II and the Cold War. But evangelical Christians have become more prominent in recent years.

Another issue they have taken a strong interest in for the past twenty-five years is international family planning. But experts say in recent years their influence on U. foreign policy has grown, from humanitarian activity in Africa to human rights in Asia. Evangelical Christians are believed to represent the single largest religious group in the United States, and as their numbers have grown, there are signs of increasing activism in U. Bush’s reelection, are among the country’s staunchest defenders of Israel, and remain supporters of the U. A major evangelical group recently issued an appeal for more activism to prevent global warming and fight poverty, and evangelicals have pressed the administration and Congress to adopt a range of humanitarian and human rights initiatives. Opinion surveys show evangelicals overwhelmingly supported President George W. But experts say it is wrong to think of evangelicals as a monolithic force in lockstep with the Bush administration.They released a statement that said human-induced climate change is real, it will disproportionately affect the poor, and that Christians have a moral responsibility to act urgently to address the problem, such as reducing carbon dioxide emissions.CFR’s Roman says the new environmental activism, which is challenged by some evangelicals, signals that evangelicals cannot be easily pigeonholed into a political bloc.

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