Conservative pundits continue to survey the wreckage from their across-the-board defeats last week, losing seven seats in the House, two in the Senate and failing to defeat President Barack Obama. Already, the tensions are emerging and they are likely to get worse as Speaker John Boehner recognizes that the hand he is holding is considerably weaker than the one he had during the last round of budget negotiations and potential GOP candidates wonder how to approach their future.
At RNS, Mark Silk takes a quick look at the voting behavior of different religious groups. Catholics, once again, "went with the winner." What is most surprising is that Gov. Romney received a higher share of the white evangelical vote than John McCain did four years ago. Concerns about his Mormon faith did not materialize at the voting booth, and that is a good thing for the country.
California voters approved a ballot measure that raises their own taxes in order to invest in education. Why is this good news? Americans like more government than they are willing to pay for. Most Americans say that they think government is too big, but when you start mentioning programs that can be cut, they insist that such programs are essential and the cuts should be made elsewhere. Gov.
Here is a link to my article in the Tablet this week, in which I asked several prominent Catholics to look ahead to a second Obama term.
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Today, Charles Camosy of Fordham posts his thoughts on the election and what they can mean for Catholic Social Teaching. Better to say, what CST can mean for the results. Great stuff.
The results on Tuesday caused many conservatives' heads to explode. After all, everyone they spoke to was voting against Obama. After all, Fox News demonstrated that the polls were all rigged in an elaborate effort to help Obama. After all, Obama was a European-loving, Muslim-loving, probably secretly a Muslim himself, except that he was a socialist too, and he wasn't even born here, and he believed all that nonsense about climate change, and well.....
Hurricane Sandy and its aftermath is still a harsh reality for many tens of thousands of people whose homes were destroyed, or whose ability to access public transportation has been compromised, or who still have no electricity in their homes. Rising sea levels make all bad storms more destructive than they otherwise would be, and it is well past impossible to deny that the incidents of extreme weather are becoming more common. Sadly, it is not at all clear that the nation’s political landscape will permit the kind of steps needed to address this issue.
As the results of Tuesday’s elections sink in, and bishops’ secretaries double check the flight reservations for their bosses headed to Baltimore for the annual plenary meeting next Monday, the bishops themselves must survey the political landscape and ask themselves how they can best manage the always tricky fault lines between politics and religion in American culture.
It has been fun listening to the talking heads at Fox complain about the polls the last few weeks, and especially about the New York Times' Nate Silver who analyzes the polls brutally to put them through the sniff test. The refrain, repeated again and again, was that the 2012 electorate was not going to look like the 2008 electorate. Guess what? It looked exactly like it and the keys to Obama's victory are all demographic keys.