Are you a Democrat running for office this November?



Democrats and Religion? Yes!

If you are a Democrat running for office in the Fall of 2018, you can reach religious and values voters in a grounded, confident, and impactful way.

Vote Common Good is here to help you turn your perceived weakness into real strength.

Vote Common Good team members have worked as pastors, coaches, activists, and spiritual directors for decades, and we are equipped with “insider” knowledge, empathy, and the best practices of religious communication. As a part of our overall strategy, we want to help you tap into your authentic self when you communicate to religious voters.

In front of any religious audience, your authenticity can become more compelling than the lingo, posturing, or hubris of your opponents.

Our Goals This Fall

Help Democratic candidates become more confident talking about religion in a way that is both authentic and persuasive to religious voters, particularly Evangelicals who are ready for your message. Many of them are on the brink of turning their vote to the left in order to follow their conscience, be faithful to their religious experience and story, and cross the line (in the booth or in public) to recover their personal integrity.

  • We do this through coaching and advising, helping you as a candidate be in touch with your spiritual experience (for what it already is, nothing more), broaden your story, learn to articulate it in public, and connect with the religious sensibilities of the electorate.
  • You can be you. And you will know how to “turn the table” of faith on Republican religionists so to speak. This is more simple to do and more powerful in its impact than most Democrats can imagine.
  • We will help you ground and deepen your “presence” (presence eats arguments for breakfast) and tell a bigger story in which others can find themselves.

As a result, some previously Republican voters will flip their vote, some will stay home and not vote Republican, while some will double down their commitment against you and progressive values you hold. We are focused only on the first two groups. Offending (or often scaring) some in the third group is an inevitable byproduct of doing this right.

  • The voters we want to reach have already begun to change on the inside. They only need to acknowledge what is already true for them and cross a threshold with their actions. Voting is that action.
  • Many voters are not willing to take on more and more of the incremental fear dispensed by Republicans and much of the Evangelical establishment. Instead of trying to convince these voters with arguments on issues (level of mere reason), you will learn how to speak in a way that invites them drop into their formative faith (level of emotion, values, and social connections) and embody their faith in their political choices (level of behavior).
  • You will learn how to help them cross the line by naming what they are right about, not what they are wrong about. We are asking them to manifest deeper loyalty to the religious/spiritual path they are already on. In their heart of heart, they can’t wait to migrate from fear to faith.

Importantly, in our experience, the voter impact for Democratic candidates working on this is vastly underestimated by most candidates. The margin for growth is huge. Teachings and values of religion in general, and example of Jesus in particular, now overlap with Democratic platform and values more than with the Republican. In other words, this effort provides a small lever to open a large door for Democratic candidates.

To start, all you need is one hour.


We will spend an hour with the candidate on Zoom (an online video platform) and can follow up as needed. We can also support the candidate in other ways, such as help him/her write an op-ed for a newspaper in his/her district addressing the religious/values audience.

Other Info:

This is a pro bono service of Vote Common Good. We would request brief feedback and an optional testimonial after the coaching/consultation call.

Next Step:

If you are an organizer, activist, or are supporting a Democratic candidate running for office in November 2018 in some way, forward this information to the candidate or candidate’s campaign manager.

If you are a candidate or a campaign manager, send an email to Samir Selmanović to set up an initial one-hour session.

May the peace and the power of your heart bring you victory this November.

Samir Selmanović

Our Facilitators


Samir Selmanović PhD, PCC

New York, NY

Samir is an ally to individuals and organizations who want to grow simpler and practice real change in real time. He grew up in a European Muslim family, served twelve years as an ordained Evangelical pastor in the U.S., and founded an interfaith organization in NYC. For the last ten years, he has been a coach, consultant, and speaker, helping leaders from sage CEOs to teenage community organizers survive and thrive.

Through Wisdom Workroom, Samir helps his individual and organizational clients cross their next threshold and achieve their most important goals through the practice of being present, telling a bigger story, and befriending the unknown. Samir is also Co-Chair of the Vote Common Good campaign.

Brian D. McLaren

Marco Island, FL

Brian is an author, speaker, activist, and public theologian. A former college English teacher and for 24 years a pastor, he is a passionate advocate for “a new kind of Christianity” – just, generous, and working with people of all faiths for the common good. He is the author of fifteen books, including, The Great Spiritual Migration.

As an Auburn Senior Fellow, he collaborates with many of the nation’s top multi-faith leaders, and his special areas of concern include climate and the environment, income injustice and poverty, government corruption, and creating the conditions for a more peaceful world.