This paper by Jakob F. Dittmar focusses on the tactical use of religious issues from various beliefs by leading political figures for political reasons. These are duly called "defenders of faith" by the media.
We are not talking about persons, but about their figures constructed and commented on by mass media coverage. The two examples chosen here suffice to show the difference in attitudes and intentions that can be seen as causes for political instrumantalising of religion.
Tony Blair for instance, regularly referred to various issues from diverse faiths, encompassing all kinds of confessions, to convince audiences of the inherent unity of their various beliefs with his politics.
the Prince of Wales, i.e. Prince Charles, on the other hand, comments and works on religious matters in British society and combines this with his charitable work for young people. He claims that religious issues are present in almost all social fields and therefore are crucial for dialogue, integration and productivity. In his speeches he does not mix issues from the different sets of beliefs. When he directly compares concepts, he always refers to their individual sources and background.
Religious issues are always political issues as they describe and define cultural practices, traditions and their ideological background. The interchangeability and the indifference to detail, to individual ethical and cultural background of individual faiths do not allow for serious dialogue between members of the cultures concerned.
The way political elites deal with the plurality of creeds to construct a social coherence can be seen when looking at the two examples quite clearly. Tony Blair is not pluralistic in his approach towards religions but pretended to be when being Prime Minister. Prince Charles is taking a pluralistic approach while keeping a conservative position above party political concepts (conservative in the true meaning of the word: to conserve).
Download of the paper (pdf) here