Historian Matthew Avery Sutton has a new book out: American Apocalypse: A History of Modern Evangelicalism. Daniel Silliman interviews Sutton about his book at Religion Dispatches. Sutton says:
My argument in a nutshell is that the apocalyptic theology that developed in the 1880s and 1890s led radical evangelicals to the conclusion that all nations are going to concede their power in the End Times to a totalitarian political leader who is going to be the Antichrist. If you believe you’re living in the last days and you believe you’re moving towards that event, you’re going to be very suspicious and skeptical of anything that seems to undermine individual rights and individual liberties, and anything that is going to give more power to the state.
The entire interview is quite enlightening (see especially Sutton’s comments on African American apocalypticism). You can find it all here: It’s The Apocalypse, Stupid: Understanding Christian Opposition to Obamacare, Civil Rights, New Deal and More | Religion Dispatches.