SPRINGFIELD, Va. -- With so much on the line in the presidential election, special interest groups are meeting across the nation to strategize and to inspire their members.
Values voters are likely to be one of the most decisive blocs at the ballot box, as some of their leaders heard at a strategy session in the key swing state of Virginia this week.
'Nation's Destiny at Stake'
Focus on the Family vice president Tim Goeglein spent years as former President George W. Bush's main adviser, reaching out to people of faith.
He told a meeting of Christian leaders in northern Virginia that this election could be as key to the nation's destiny as that of Abraham Lincoln's in 1860 or Ronald Reagan's in 1980.
"What is the future of marriage? What is the future of the sanctity and dignity of every human life? And what is the future of religious liberty and our rights of conscience? Those are giant issues and they're all at play in this election," he said.
Victoria Cobb, with The Family Foundation, noted that Virginia's evangelicals were the major bloc of voters that swept Virginia's conservative Christian Gov. Bob McDonnell into office during the last election.
"Exit polls from that election revealed that more than half his supporters were self-identified evangelicals," she said. "If they show up in those same kind of numbers this year in such a crucial swing state, they could be the Americans who determine who's president."
"In the American experience and currently in the 21st century, men and women of faith constitute a very large percentage of successful candidates," he said.