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Every president invokes God and asks his blessing. Every president promises, though not always in so many words, to lead according to moral principles rooted in Biblical tradition. The English writer G. K. Chesterton called America a “nation with the soul of a church,” and every president, at times, is the pastor in the bully pulpit. But it has taken a war, and the prospect of more, to highlight a central fact: this president—this presidency—is the most resolutely “faith-based” in modern times, an enterprise founded, supported and guided by trust in the temporal and spiritual power of God. Money matters, as does military might. But the Bush administration is dedicated to the idea that there is an answer to societal problems here and to terrorism ...

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