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What is America's greatest hope?

“What is our greatest hope for the future of this nation?”

That was a question put to Americans in a scientific public opinion survey last July.

What do you suppose was the No. 1 answer?

Was it Barack Obama?

Was it a Republican Congress?

Was it a better business environment?

Was it lower taxes and less regulation?

Was it smaller government?

No, it was not Barack Obama. And it wasn’t any of the other answers as well. That might shock those trying to push the tea-party movement to promote an exclusively – and I do mean exclusively – economic or materialistic agenda.

The No. 1 answer was, instead, “Return to traditional moral values.”

That answer was chosen by 49 percent of Americans in the poll, over the following:

This doesn’t surprise me. It is what I have been trying to explain to the political pragmatists of both the left and right who sell nothing but materialism to the American people.

I would highly recommend it to Dick Armey and some of the other self-proclaimed leaders of the tea-party movement.

I would highly recommend it to Dick Morris, the architect of Bill Clinton’s legacy who is now promoting “economic conservatism” as the holy grail to the Republican Party.

I would highly recommend it to Michael Steele, chairman of the Republican National Committee.

I would highly recommend it to Glenn Beck, who determined some time ago that same-sex marriage wouldn’t hurt the country.

I would highly recommend it to organizers of the Conservative Action Political Conference, who have made their own accommodations with the same-sex marriage crowd.

But most of all I would highly recommend it to the leaders of this country’s pro-family movement, which has become very timid of late with the deaths of Jerry Falwell and D. James Kennedy and the loss of James Dobson’s powerful radio voice and platform at Focus on the Family.

Those of us who recognize that the real strength of this country is in its moral values and the pursuit of its national creed (that all men are created equal, that we are endowed by our Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness) should be emboldened by this book.

Though we shouldn’t be about the business of winning popularity contests, it is certainly good to know there still is a moral consensus. Why, I have to wonder, are so many “conservatives” and “pro-family activists” running for the tall grass on issues like same-sex marriage and the lives of unborn children?

Did these folks not notice that Iowans in last week’s election fired three of their state Supreme Court justices who suddenly discovered a constitutional right for men to marry men and women to marry women?

Here are some facts to consider:

By the way, the one thing Americans are pretty certain about is this: That government can’t fix the economy, only wreck it.

And by more than 3-to-1 over any other answer, Americans believe a return to traditional moral values is the key to the nation’s future.

What we need is a tea-party movement to shout this message from the streets and rooftops.