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Unusual Entrances: Clergymen Turned US Senators

North Carolina's Mark Harris is trying to add his name to a list of less than two-dozen members of the clergy who have served in the Senate in U.S. history and only three who were elected to the chamber since the turn of the 19th Century.

Bachmann's Little Secret: Not Fixated on God, Guns, and Gays

Only one percent of the congresswoman's nearly 600 press releases since 2007 have focused on the "3 Gs" collectively, as well as just one percent on abortion.

The 6 Times President Obama Mentioned the Pope

What do Dave Brubeck, Lech Walesa, the Queen of England and Nelson Mandela have in common?

Defense of Abedin, McCain Slow from Senate Colleagues after Bachmann Rebuke

As of mid-day Thursday, no other U.S. Senator has issued a press release defending Huma Abedin after the senior senator from Arizona's impassioned remarks in the chamber Wednesday.

Rick Santorum, Catholicism, and the 2012 Republican Ticket

Republicans have nominated a Catholic just once on the presidential ballot in 152 years, compared to seven times for the Democrats since 1928.

Andre Carson and Keith Ellison Respond to bin Laden Killing

Ellison's relative Twitter silence on the killing of bin Laden is noteworthy insomuch as the congressman had tweeted 14 times over the weekend including six times on Sunday

Will Minnesotans Elect a Catholic Governor in 2010?

Only one Catholic has ever been elected Governor in Minnesota history; Seifert, Emmer, Kelliher, Rukavina, Thissen among 2010 Catholic gubernatorial candidates

How High Does the U.S. Rank in World Muslim Population?

During the past week, President Barack Obama has made a determined effort to emphasize both the importance of Islam to American culture and history, as well as suggesting Muslims comprise a substantial percentage of the U.S. population. Obama first got into factually murky waters on Monday when, during an interview...

Coleman Says 'God Wants Me to Serve'

While Al Franken remains fairly elusive, Norm Coleman is keeping a high profile these days as his court challenge of the Minnesota U.S. Senate recount plods along. Coleman is adept, somewhat too adept, his critics might say, at skillfully tailoring his message to his audience, and that skill set was...

Live Blog: Faith and Politics

8:15 a.m. The Humphrey Institute's America's Future: Conversations about Politics and Policy during the 2008 Republican National Convention kicks off this morning with a panel discussing 'Faith and Politics.' Moderated by Krista Tippett, Host and Producer of Speaking of Faith, the panelists are Richard Land (President, Ethics and Religious Liberty...

Humphrey Institute to Host Premier Politics & Policy Forum September 1-4

As the Republican National Convention convenes in St. Paul on September 1, the University of Minnesota and the Hubert H. Humphrey Institute of Public Affairs is creating the premier forum for independent and respected analysis and commentary during the Convention. America's Future: Conversations about Politics and Policy during the 2008...

Why Is Obama Talking About Religion?

Barack Obama's recent comments on religion's problematic role when mixed with government—along with his citation of certain Biblical passages as evidence of this point—have now once again raised the specter of his own religious beliefs. Obama's comments not only renewed his political feud with Dr. James Dobson, founder of Focus...

E.J. Dionne to Speak on Politics and Religion at Humphrey Institute

From the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance press release: Souled Out: Reclaiming Faith and Politics after the Religious Right E.J. Dionne, Jr., columnist, Washington Post, and senior fellow, Brookings Institution Tuesday, April 22, 2008 Noon - 1:15pm Humphrey Forum Hubert H. Humphrey Center 301 19th Ave S....

Obama's Numbers Sinking As Pastor Controversy Continues

As news broke last week in the mainstream media of videotaped statements by Barack Obama's friend and Reverend spouting what most Americans view as radical, racially-fused, anti-American political rhetoric, Obama's lead over Hillary Clinton in national polls for the Democratic presidential nomination began to break as well. One week ago,...

What Will Stop The Huckabee Surge?

While Mike Huckabee's rise to the top of the Republican polls nationwide and in key states (Iowa, South Carolina, and Michigan) appears unstoppable, this, of course, is not the nature of politics. For example, in the 2004 presidential campaign, the rise and the fall of Howard Dean's candidacy were equally...

Joe Lieberman, Religion, and Iraq

Lost in the headlines of the Democratic Senate's failed attempt last weekend to bust a GOP filibuster to force a floor debate and resolution vote on President George W. Bush's surge in American forces in Iraq is that one member of the Democratic caucus allied himself with the Republican...

Religion and Minnesota Politics

The relationship between religion and politics should fascinate even the most casual political observer. (In recent weeks religion has become an interesting sidebar in the 6th District US House race—a matter best saved for another blog entry). Karl Rove—President George W. Bush's trusted political strategist in the White House—is credited...



Political Crumbs

Strike Three for Miller-Meeks

Iowa Republicans had a banner day on November 4th, picking up both a U.S. Senate seat and one U.S. House seat, but Mariannette Miller-Meeks' defeat in her third attempt to oust Democrat Dave Loebsack in the 2nd CD means the GOP will not have a monopoly on the state's congressional delegation in the 114th Congress. The loss by Miller-Meeks (following up her defeats in 2008 and 2010) means major party nominees who lost their first two Iowa U.S. House races are now 0 for 10 the third time around in Iowa history. Miller-Meeks joins Democrat William Leffingwell (1858, 1868, 1870), Democrat Anthony Van Wagenen (1894, 1912 (special), 1912), Democrat James Murtagh (1906, 1914, 1916), Democrat Clair Williams (1944, 1946, 1952), Democrat Steven Carter (1948, 1950, 1956), Republican Don Mahon (1966, 1968, 1970), Republican Tom Riley (1968, 1974, 1976), Democrat Eric Tabor (1986, 1988, 1990), and Democrat Bill Gluba (1982, 1988, 2004) on the Hawkeye State's Three Strikes list.


Larry Pressler Wins the Silver

Larry Pressler may have fallen short in his long-shot, underfunded, and understaffed bid to return to the nation's upper legislative chamber, but he did end up notching the best showing for a non-major party South Dakota U.S. Senate candidate in more than 90 years. Pressler won 17.1 percent of the vote which is the best showing for an independent or third party U.S. Senate candidate in the state since 1920 when non-partisan candidate Tom Ayres won 24.1 percent in a race won by Republican Peter Norbeck. Overall, Pressler's 17.1 percent is good for the second best mark for a non-major party candidate across the 35 U.S. Senate contests in South Dakota history. Independent and third party candidates have appeared on the South Dakota U.S. Senate ballot just 25 times over the last century and only three have reached double digits: Pressler in 2014 and Ayres in 1920 and 1924 (12.1 percent). Pressler's defeat means he won't become the oldest candidate elected to the chamber in South Dakota history nor notch the record for the longest gap in service in the direct election era.


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