Obama Adviser Defends Pick of Warren

CHICAGO (AP) - A top adviser to President-elect Barack Obama has
defended the selection of the Rev. Rick Warren to deliver the inaugural invocation.

On NBC's "Meet the Press," David Axelrod said the invitationunderlines the inclusiveness Obama wants to institute in his administration.

Axelrod said, "The important point here is you have a conservative evangelical pastor coming to take part in the inauguration of a progressive president."

Warren supported the constitutional ban on same-sex marriage passed by California voters, angering gay rights groups.

Warren also has battled complaints from fellow evangelicals that he shouldn't pray at the inauguration of a president who has pledged to expand access to abortion.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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