The use of religion right now, in the R primary especially, has more to do with distracting people from the economy and associated issues than actually giving a crap about religion. The relentlessly strict-Catholic-ward shifting of policy declarations is a key clue. Rs don't want to talk about the economy, because they know they will eventually be taken to task for the fact that this crash was at least 30 years in the making, and it's not Obama's fault that it happened. He can be 'blamed' for the Affordable Health Car Act, but that's not as unpopular as media would have you believe, especially not with people who actually understand what it is and isn't.
Also, the Rs have been pretty candid
* about their goal at the moment being obstructing Obama with the presumed intent of winning the White House this year (That's just one example. I know I read several Rs saying they intend to 'obstruct Obama' as often as possible and no matter what, but my Google-fu fails). In order to do that, they have to present issues that get people riled up and not talking about the serious problems that they don't want to deal with. Why they don't want to deal with them seems to be mostly about avoiding anything good at all happening during Obama's term.
Hey, what makes the conservative fundies go into a froth and ignore everything else? LGBTQ rights, abortion, and now birth control.
Meanwhile, the Ds are squandering a lot of opportunities to capitalize on this because they're incompetent at that sort of thing. At the same time, a lot of progressives are taking these matters into their own hands and getting riled up that the Rs are against these things without Ds leading that charge. See Planned Parenthood raising ~$700k as a direct result of the Komen debacle, see the rallying around the newest Prop 8 decision, see the outcry against anti-gay bullying, see the rallying around PP also about this time last year, and so on.
What this winds up looking like is 'everyone is fighting about religion'. Which we are, but there's more to it than that. I don't honestly believe that any of the R candidates actually want to impose Catholic Law (or whatever you want to call it) on the US, except maybe in some wild totalitarian fantasies. I think they will talk about it, they will continue to try it, but they will not succeed, and they know it. What they will do is galvanize both sides for a sort of war that has nothing to do with the economy
: it doesn't involve defending rich people, it sidelines and marginalizes Occupy, and it makes fundamentalist Christians - who can be very effective when organized - loud and mobilized for electioneering.
*About that link - I was referring to the text under the video, which was the best quote source I could find with a headache in the early AM. My computer can't actually play that video for some reason, so I don't know if it's relevant or not.