The two-person consulting firm behind much of the Democratic Party's recent embrace of religion -- Common Good Strategies -- has morphed into two parts: a PAC focusing on raising Obama money from faith voters and an expanded consulting group with four partners, including the faith adviser from Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton's campaign.
The unveiling today of the Eleison Group -- named after the Christian prayer Kyrie Eleison -- shows the maturation of a field that was essentially non-existent three years ago as many high-level Democratic candidates shied from using faith language or talking about their own religious beliefs.
Among the Eleison Group's co-founders are:
Burns Strider, Clinton's faith outreach director and a former Southern Baptist Convention missionary to Hong Kong.
Eric Sapp, senior partner at Common Good Strategies, which opened its doors in 2005 and did then-unprecedented faith work with Democratic governors Ted Strickland of Ohio, Jennifer Granholm of Michigan and Kathleen Sebelius of Kansas, as well as Sens. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania and Sherrod Brown of Ohio.