Rev. Orsi v. Pope Benedict

Over the last few days there’s been some chatter (led by Terry Mattingly) about why the Catholic bishops haven’t been weighing in on health reform. This has been a big issue for them, so what’s up? Pretty clearly, they’ve been hamstrung by the abortion issue, having to deal on the right with the likes of […]

Status quo on abortion coverage

Steve Waldman reports on what happened last night in the House Energy and Commerce Committee’s health care bill in re: abortion coverage. Both sides claimed to be aiming at preserving the status, but in the end only the amendment  of Lois Capps (D-CA) was left standing. Pro-choicers rejoiced, pro-lifers said bah. I predict that Congress […]

Catholics, same-sex marriage…and the GOP

In response to my recent postings (here and here) on the correlation between Catholic presence and support for same-sex marriage (SSM), I’ve received an interesting (yet unpublished) paper from Darren Sherkat of Southern Illinois and some colleagues conjuring via regression analysis with a number of factors involved in the politics of the issue over the […]

Thought on the beer summit

Courtesy of A.E. Housman:     And malt does more than Milton can    To justify God’s ways to man.    Ale, man, ale’s the stuff to drink    For fellows whom it hurts to think:    Look into the pewter pot    To see the world as the world’s not.

Paul Stanley de la Rochefoucauld

Paul Stanley is the Tennessee state senator who resigned his office a couple of days ago when it was revealed that he was having an affair with a 22-year-old intern. Stanley acknowledged in an interview with WREC radio host Ben Ferguson that he had an affair. He also defended statements he had made condemning sex […]

The government already pays for abortions

In recent days, the opposition to health reform legislation has been cranking up a pro-life meme, to the effect that the legislation will mandate government funding of abortions. I’ve addressed the elements of the charge here, and proposed a federalized solution to the issue here. But because the meme is being pushed so hard–as in […]

Why the Catholic/same-sex marriage correlation?

USA Today‘s Cathy Grossman at Faith & Reason and the Boston Globe‘s Michael Paulson at Articles of Faith have been pondering my little correlation between the proportion of Catholics in a state and the state’s support for same-sex marriage, so let me offer a possible explanation. It’s fair to point out (as Michael does) that […]

Volunteering and religion

Yesterday’s annual report on volunteering in America was promoted by the White House (press release after jump) to highlight the unsurprising fact that a lot of volunteerism is connected to religious institutions–one-third, to be precise. But the relationship between religion and volunteerism is not simple, as the report’s rankings demonstrate. The high rankings in Utah […]

Catholics heart same-sex marriage

A new study by Columbia political scientists Jeffrey Lax and Justin Phillips (h/t Robbie Jones), forthcoming in the American Political Science Review , ranks states according to public support for same-sex marriage and civil unions. Putting the rankings together with the 2008 Trinity ARIS survey reveals that six of the eight states where 50 percent […]