[T]he greatest weakness of Wuthnow’s analysis is that he identifies political conservatism with the GOP and religious conservatism with evangelical Protestantism. In a two-party system, paleoconservatives and traditionalist or liturgical Christians only have so many options; they may be forced to hold their noses with one hand while pulling the GOP lever with the other. But in the history of political thought and the Christian tradition, the GOP and religious right only faintly resemble anything that can be called conservative. No real conservative would ever countenance prohibiting alcohol as a remedy for human infirmities, just as no genuine Christian would consider grape juice a suitable substitute for wine. Associating conservatism with Republicans is particularly annoying given the party’s radical origins and current ideological posture.
Earlier Dish on Wuthnow's new book here.