Religion and Politics in the United States, Sixth Edition, offers a comprehensive account of the role of religious ideas, institutions and communities in American life. This book examines the ways religion can both compel and constrain involvement in politics and policy. What facilitates political participation? What impedes it? What are the limits of religious mobilization and involvement? Are there benefits? Are there dangers? Religion and Politics in the United States addresses these questions by exploring how religion has influenced the structure of American government and law as well as how religious perspectives inform contemporary political issues including topics such as equal rights for women and gays. The book also explores the ways that religion has affected the orientation of partisan politics in the United States. Through a detailed review of the political attitudes and behaviors of major religious and minority faith traditions, the book establishes that religion continues to be a major part of the American cultural and political milieu while explaining that it must interact with many other factors to impact political outcomes in the United States. The sixth edition reviews the role of religion in the 2008 election and includes coverage of how religion informs the civil rights struggles of women and gay Americans.