Burns Strider held an interesting position in Hillary Clinton's presidential campaign. He was her religious-outreach guy, a senior staffer who did his best to explain how his candidate's religious faith motivated her policy positions. I met Burns in person once, had some interesting e-mail exchanges with him during the campaign. I found him to be a decent sort who was willing to exchange actual ideas beyond soundbites. I wondered if he'd go to work for Obama, a candidate who has generally been much better than Clinton at weaving religion-related themes into his public persona.
I got an e-mail from him with the answer: Nope. He's going to open a consulting business aimed at, well, I'll let him explain after the jump...
Apparently there's a living to be made helping Democratic politicians connect with religious voters. Here's the top of the news release:
ROSSLYN, VA - Leading religious outreach experts who have helped revolutionize the way Democrats engage with faith in the public square today announced the launch of a new faith and values consulting firm. This new partnership, the Eleison Group, represents the next wave in the nascent but growing world of faith based outreach in progressive and Democratic politics.
Burns is one of the founding partners in the new firm, which takes "its name from the Greek word found in a prayer common to Protestant and Catholic liturgies--the Kyrie Eleison which means "Lord, have mercy." The term captures a founding principle of Eleison Group that faith outreach must be authentic and come from a place of religious humility rather than religious arrogance."