"On one of the greatest moral questions of the administration -- and arguably one of the greatest challenges to Christian ethics of the last decade -- he has nothing to say.
For sake of argument, let's say Ashcroft shouldn't have brought his religious beliefs into his decision-making. Perhaps we want our Attorney General to completely submerge his religion when dealing with policy. Indeed, on other occasions Ashcroft apparently went against his personal beliefs in order to enforce the law -- as when he had federal marshals protect doctors who perform abortions.
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."
I am with Waldman here (though his reference to Richard Land as a "moderate" leaves me puzzled), if people like Bush and Ashcroft are not expected to actually act like Christians, then what is the point of electing them?
I would further add that this not only goes to Ashcroft, but the large population of conservative Christians who praised Bush's faith and reelected him--all without ever questioning the man on torture.