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American politics is the politics of coalitions, and religious groups are not exempt from the need to build alliances. Indeed, religious coalitions have often been the subject of hot debate by observers and activists alike. Ever since the presidential election a year ago, the media has been full of reports about "new religious coalitions," at the very same time that battles over abortion, same-sex marriage, and judicial nominees have revived some old ones. The controversy over the current state of religious alliances slides almost imperceptibly from empirical—how do religious groups cooperate in contemporary politics?—to prescriptive: how should religious groups coalesce so that appropriate values shape public policy?
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