Tim Murphy

Tim Murphy

Reporter

Tim Murphy is a senior reporter in MoJo's DC bureau. His writing has been featured in Slate and the Washington Monthly. Email him with tips and insights at tmurphy [at] motherjones [dot] com.

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It's a Trap! Conservatives Come to Grips With #OccupyWallStreet

At the Values Voter Summit, the right-wing case against the protesters takes form.

| Tue Oct. 11, 2011 11:07 AM EDT
The Occupy Wall Street protests have entered their second month.

The Occupy Wall Street movement is so unlike the tea party movement in so many ways it's almost worth dismissing the comparison entirely as a totally contrived media-generated narrative. Almost. But there is one key similiarity: Both groups have become, in the eyes of their opponents, a symbol for everything that's wrong with American politics. They are their brothers' punching bags. Which is why Occupiers and tea partiers sort of freak out when you make the comparison; it's like being told to look in the mirror and finding out that you've suddenly sprouted three heads.

The protesters weren't the number-one topic of discussion at the Values Voter Summit in DC—that would probably be President Barack Obama's continued assault on American values. But the nationwide demonstrations were a recurring theme on stage and among the rank-and-file attendees. Over the course of the weekend, a consensus began to form about who these protesters were and what shadowy groups might be behind them.

WATCH: Perry Endorser Calls Judaism, Catholicism Path to Hell

Dallas Pastor Robert Jeffress is turning into a major liability for the Texas Governor.

| Mon Oct. 10, 2011 2:35 PM EDT
Dallas pastor's call for Evangelical voters to apply a religious test on GOP presidential candidates has put Rick Perry's campaign in hot water.

Dallas pastor Robert Jeffress says that he is not going to be Rick Perry's Jeremiah Wright. That's probably true. But Jeffress, who introduced Perry at the Values Voter Summit on October 7, certainly isn't doing the Texas governor any favors with his argument that Mitt Romney belongs to a cult (Mormonism) and holds religious views that should be held against him at the polls this winter. Jeffress's appearance on-stage was approved by the Perry campaign, according to the event's organizer, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins.

It's only getting worse. Alex Burns flags comments Jeffress made at his church on Sunday that, "Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism and Mormonism are all false religions and I stand by those statements." But Jeffress left one major world religion out: Judaism. That wasn't always the case. Here's what he said in his Politically Incorrect lecture series in 2010:

Evangelical Firebrand Knocks Romney on Immigration

The Liberty Council's Matt Staver says Mitt's anti-immigration rhetoric is hurting conservatives.

| Mon Oct. 10, 2011 11:46 AM EDT
Former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney has made illegal immigration an issue in the GOP presidential race.

You probably heard about Mitt Romney's on-stage condemnation of an anti-Muslim* speaker at the Values Voter Summit this weekend in Washington, DC. But there was another, less-noticed truth-to-power moment at the conference: Liberty University law school dean Matt Staver calling out his fellow conservatives for policies and language that alienate Latinos.

"Personally I am very concerned about who occupies that White House, but I'm also very concerned about the future of the Latino population," Staver said in his Friday afternoon address. "And I'm concerned that we will push them...into a liberal, political, leftist machine that is contrary to their values but also is seemingly open to them I am concerned about the rhetoric conservatives use with regard to the Latino community. They are not our enemies; they are our friends, they are our allies, and we need to engage them."

And then he played the trump card: 

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