Political vs. Religious

In class last week we discussed the connection between politics and religion, and how Church and State affects American life. Recently, it has become very apparent in the US that religion heavily influences politics, with news stories about republicans defunding Planned Parenthood and conservatives walking for pro-life in the news. In the reading, Chaves talks about how Americans who are more religious tend to be more politically and religiously conservative. Their religious beliefs permeate politics and affect decisions based on their beliefs about human life, birth control, etc. Since we learned in class a few weeks ago that America is the most religious country in the Western world, it makes sense that religion affects other aspects of our lives, specifically politics. Since we are fortunate enough to have religious freedom in the US, the multiude of religious practiced by Americans today leads to a multidue of beliefs, and in turn, conflicts among religious groups/political groups. Perhaps the divide between political parties would be lessened if religion was taken out as a factor, or if everyone practiced the same religion. I wonder if religion will always affect politics, or if we will ever be able to distance ourselves from our beliefs in order to make the best decision for the majority of Americans.