Belief ≠ ID
The IDiots seem to be getting their asses handed to them on just about every front, but I have to wonder whether they've held on as long as they have in part because of a (probably purposeful) conflation of the 'theory' of intelligent design with a more general belief that the universe was created by a deity. The Accidental Blogger notes that even the Catholic Church recognizes a distinction:
For more than half a century, the Roman Catholic Church has embraced the science of evolution and has rejected the kind of politically "polluted" ... fundamentalism that stinks up the evolution/ID wars. True, some are confused about where Pope Benedict XVI stands. Hasn't he spoken of "this intelligent project that is the cosmos"? Yes — but that's a religious statement, not a claim that ID is science.
I have to wonder that if part of the reason for the ridiculously high level of support for ID (at least as indicated by opinion polls) is that people think they are being asked whether or not God 'designed' or created the universe or existence itself, which is a much weaker claim than that made by ID, which states that Darwinian evolution cannot account for the whole of biology, and that some biological facts can only be explained by reference to divine meddling. A rejection of this claim is perfectly compatible with theism, as demonstrated by the Church's position, which I take it is uncontroversially coherent, even if some don't find it particularly plausible or convincing.
Maybe I'm wrong; maybe people really do reject the basic paradigm of Darwinism. But I can't help but suspect that whatever appeal ID still holds would be reduced if its logical independence of a more general theism were more widely understood.
UPDATE: Reading the comments, I realize I made a subtle but important error in the last sentence above. I didn't mean to say that ID was independent of theism; I should have said that theism is independent of ID. Obviously, ID assumes theism; the point I was trying to make was that theism doesn't assume ID. Sorry for the confusion.