Over at Beliefnet, Steven Waldman asks an troubling question: why didn’t John Ashcroft, perhaps the most devoutly religious man ever to hold the office of Attorney General, do anything to impede Bush’s torture program?
But if that’s the case, I’m left wondering: what is the value of having a religious person in office? I don’t mean that as a snarky rhetorical question. I’m honestly perplexed: if ever there was a situation when we actually could have benefited from having a self-righteous, moral, Bible-reading, God-fearing Christian in the room to morally challenge utilitarian thinking, the discussions about torture would have been it.
Perhaps John Ashcroft’s flaw was not that he was too Christian on the job but that he was not Christian enough.