Jim Towey, director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives, was Wednesday's guest. Here are excepts from his remarks:
"[It] has been an unheralded success story. [President Bush] has carried through on his promise to remove barriers so that faith-based organizations and community groups could partner with the federal government in addressing the needs of our poor."
"I think it smacks often of religious intolerance. [Their] view of the First Amendment basically sanitizes the public square of any possible religious influence, and I don't think that is what the First Amendment says. Nor is it what most Americans want."
On the danger of mixing church and state :
"You have to be vigilant on these church/state issues. The president has made clear no one wants to see church and state merged into one. We see the dire consequences when that happens."
"There has been a certain amount of fatigue among groups that work with intract-able social problems. [You] certainly see some groups that start out with great intentions and then kind of run out of gas."
"He does not consider himself some super-Christian.... He is very humble about his faith."
An expanded report is available at: http://blogs.csmonitor.com/cooks_capitol/