Local Democrats Respond To Controversial Vote On God

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HUNTSVILLE, Ala.(WHNT)-The fallout from an unscripted moment of division at the Democratic National Convention continued Thursday, with local Democrats downplaying the episode and reaffirming their individual support for God in the party platform.

DNC officials said that a majority of delegates did vote to reinsert language pertaining to God and the nation of Israel back in the official platform, one day after it had been removed. The contentious decision was reached after three separate voice votes that appeared to be inconclusive.

Those who voted against acknowledging God continued to maintain that they were in the majority, and that the vote had been unfairly rigged against them. But one local delegate who was on the convention floor called the claim preposterous.

"From my vantage point, it was a unanimous vote," said Madison County Democratic Commissioner Bob Harrison, who voted to reinsert the God and Israel wording. "I was personally on the floor, and I heard no 'nays' at all. Zero 'nays'. We have people who are believers and we have people who are atheists, but as far as this party is concerned, we give due process to everybody."

DNC officials said Thursday that the omission of God was due to a simple technical error. White House aides said President Obama personally asked for a redo on the platform. North Alabama Congressional candidate Charlie Holley (D) said Republicans were trying to blow the platform vote out of proportion.

"God does not have an ego problem," said Holley, who is challenging current Congressman Mo Brooks. "He's not up there saying you don't have my name written in your party platform."

But others have their doubts over how things were handled. Huntsville pastor Robert Somerville called the Democrats' approach to the platform debate disingenuous.

"It's not so much whether it was put back in, but the fact it was left out," said Somerville. "There's a passage in Psalms that says very clearly that every nation that forgets God shall know destruction. Those kind of controversies in our political system does not bode well for the health of this nation."

The lone reference to God that was reinstated by Democrats was a sentence referring to people who work hard and "make the most of their God-given potential."

The Republican platform that was unveiled last week mentioned God twelve separate times.

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