God be with you. . . if you agree with me
Since we are already talking about God's political preferences, this is what I think about it. I think that maybe we would all be better off if politicians were not allowed to invoke the almighty at all. I am all for good god fearing people holding office, and I think that it is okay for someone's religious beliefs to influence their political ideas (and even their actions once they are in office), but it is dangerous to say that God endorses any political agenda. Here are a few reasons why:
1. when someone thinks that they are doing God's work there is a tendancy to be unwilling to compromise, which is a great quality when standing by your beliefs in your personal life (aka thou shall not steal, etc.) but in politics you have so many competing interests that compromise is almost always necessary, and usually not a bad thing. I've heard a lot of people that think one of the reasons that the Nush administration feel so comfortable doing whatever they feel like is the president's strong belief that he is doing what God wants (whether or not you like Bush, I think most people would agree that at least a little more compromise/discussion would be a good thing).
2. The last time I checked, there was only one guy who was authorized to recieve revelation for the whole world. Maybe you could argue that political leaders have some kind of stewardship, but given the important-but-secular nature of their position I think this might be a tough case to make.
3. Political leaders have to solve lots of problems that seem to me to be mostly organizational, taxing/spending plans, voting districts, etc. a lot of these areas seem to fall under the choosing between two good things umbrella that God may or may not feel strongly either way. If we raise tax on beef to get more funds for highways, it helps the drivers and hurts the BBQers, who does God want to bear the spending burden. Stuff like that.
4. Political leaders are elected to serve all of the people who live within their jurisdiction, not just the christians, or the moslums, or the atheists. Lots of those people don't care if the God that the mayor believes in wants him to do something, they want him to try to do what is best for everyone and listen to his constitutients. It seems kind of insensitive to assume that just because you think that God is one way everyone else does too.
I guess it might even lead to a discussion of how far the establishment clause should go, God has always had a role in American politics, but when does that help us and when does that hurt us? A while ago a friend said to me that while, as Latter Day Saints we are all for prayer and worship, shouldn't we also be the ones that really want a seperation of church and state after a lot of the things that have gone on historically between the LDS church and the government? Just a starting point, your thoughts?