Jun 4, 2011 12:17 AM by Matt Stafford

GOP tries to bridge social-fiscal divide

WASHINGTON (AP) - Republican leaders are trying to keep Christian conservatives excited in a fiscally dominated election season by blurring the line between social and economic issues.

Failure to do so could potentially depress turnout by an important part of the Republican base. Social and Christian conservatives have no obvious candidate to turn to now that Baptist minister Mike Huckabee has decided not to run.

Several presidential hopefuls are emphasizing their religious faith and opposition to abortion and gay marriage. Some of them are better known as business-like managers of state governments and private firms.

Their efforts were on display Friday at a Washington gathering of the Faith and Freedom Coalition. The group's name summarizes the bid to combine religious and libertarian priorities.



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