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Neil J. Young
Neil J. Young is a co-host of the Past Present history podcast and the author of We Gather Together: The Religious Right and the Problem of Interfaith Politics (Oxford, 2015). He has taught at Princeton and Columbia. He has written for publications including the New York Times, Slate, and Marginalia. You can follow him on Twitter @NeilJYoung17.

Entries by Neil J. Young

Utah Elected Its First Gay Mayor? Don't Be So Surprised

(2) Comments | Posted November 18, 2015 | 4:33 PM

On Tuesday, election officials in Utah verified that Salt Lake City had elected its first openly gay mayor, Jackie Biskupski. Biskupski had garnered the most votes on election day two weeks ago, but the race was close enough to require mail-in ballots to be counted. Those ballots have...

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6 Predictions for the Future of the Religious Right

(144) Comments | Posted November 5, 2015 | 4:19 PM

For more than forty years now, the Religious Right has been a powerful force in the United States, helping reshape the Republican Party and realign the nation's politics and culture.

Typically considered a grassroots movement of conservative Catholics, evangelicals, and Mormons, and the political organizations that mobilized their efforts...

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Why Evangelicals Are Attacking Pope Francis on Abortion

(28) Comments | Posted September 4, 2015 | 11:34 AM

On Tuesday, Pope Francis issued a letter decreeing priests could absolve women who have had an abortion who now seek forgiveness. This decision is to take effect during the church's Holy Year of Mercy, which begins in December. (Pope John Paul II also allowed priests to do the...

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Kate Kelly, the LDS Church, and the Problem of Mormon Feminists

(33) Comments | Posted July 2, 2014 | 2:57 PM

Last week, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints excommunicated Kate Kelly for leading a movement to open up the church's male-only priesthood to Mormon women. Kelly received word of her excommunication via email from her bishop, Mark Harrison, of her LDS stake in northern Virginia. Convicted...

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Is the Mormon Moment Over?

(482) Comments | Posted November 20, 2012 | 6:51 AM

No sooner had Mitt Romney lost the presidential election than various pundits and journalists began to declare that the "Mormon moment" was over. Certainly, Romney's candidacies in 2008 and 2012 brought about increased visibility and often scrutiny for Mormonism. Since its founding less than two hundred years ago,...

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Romney Finds Religion

(29) Comments | Posted August 31, 2012 | 10:49 AM

Republicans meeting in Tampa this week and Americans watching the GOP convention at home heard a lot about something the Romney campaign hasn't wanted to talk about before: Mitt Romney's Mormon faith. On Thursday night, a series of Romney's fellow members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints...

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Lessons from Iowa's Evangelicals

(16) Comments | Posted January 4, 2012 | 3:58 PM

In a field with Rick Perry and Michelle Bachmann as options, perhaps one of the bigger surprises of Tuesday's Iowa caucus was the support of evangelical voters for the Catholic Rick Santorum. Representing 57% of caucus-goers (down three percent from four years ago), evangelical Iowans gave Santorum 32%...

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Evangelical Good News for Romney?

(12) Comments | Posted November 28, 2011 | 6:00 PM

On the day before Thanksgiving, Mitt Romney received some news from the Pew Research Center's Forum on Religion & Public Life for which he must be truly thankful. In a survey recently completed by Pew, researchers found that while Romney's Mormon faith continues to dog him among Republican...

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Our Father? The Religious Battle Over School Prayer

(837) Comments | Posted November 11, 2011 | 8:37 PM

In Florida, the state's Senate Education Committee recently forwarded a bill on school prayer to state lawmakers for consideration. Proposed by Democratic Sen. Gary Siplin of Orlando, the bill would allow student-led prayers at school events like graduation, dances and football games. Since the U.S. Supreme Court banned prayer and...

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Studying Conversion: What Stories Count?

(13) Comments | Posted October 17, 2011 | 1:01 PM

As the temperatures start to dip and the days grow shorter, most people begin to think of the end of the year and all they hope to accomplish before Jan. 1. But for those of us in academia, the cooler wind gusts and the lengthening shadows signal the start of...

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Romney's Evangelical Problem

(2) Comments | Posted June 7, 2011 | 11:09 AM

With the announcement earlier this month that he would again seek the Republican nomination for president in 2012, Mitt Romney launched his expected return to the presidential race. Yet even before Romney could officially declare his candidacy, questions about how his Mormon faith would affect his chances had already reemerged....

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Money, God and Greed: The Tea Party and Capitalism

(50) Comments | Posted May 9, 2011 | 10:31 AM

In the recent efforts to understand something about the seemingly incomprehensible Tea Partiers, a lot has been made about the upsurge in sales of Ayn Rand's capitalist manifesto, Atlas Shrugged. But there's another book making the rounds among Tea Partiers, especially of the religious bent, this year that also deserves...

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