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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

Does My Key Still Work?

Much has been made about Charlie Crist's political transformation from Republican to independent to Democrat en route to winning the Florida GOP and Democratic gubernatorial nominations over a span of eight years. Party-switching aside, Crist is also vying to become just the second Florida governor to serve two interrupted terms. Democrat William Bloxham was the first - serving four year terms from 1881 to 1885 and then 1897 to 1901. Florida did not permit governors serving consecutive terms for most of its 123 years prior to changes made in its 1968 constitution. Since then four have done so: Democrats Reubin Askew, Bob Graham, and Lawton Chiles and Republican Jeb Bush.


No 100-Year Curse for Roberts

Defeating his Tea Party primary challenger Milton Wolf with just 48.1 percent of the vote, Pat Roberts narrowly escaped becoming the first elected U.S. Senator from Kansas to lose a renomination bid in 100 years. The last - and so far only - elected U.S. Senator to lose a Kansas primary was one-term Republican Joseph Bristow in 1914. Bristow was defeated by former U.S. Senator Charles Curtis who went on to win three terms before becoming Herbert Hoover's running mate in 1928. Only one other U.S. Senator from the Sunflower State has lost a primary since the passage of the 17th Amendment: Sheila Frahm in 1996. Frahm was appointed to fill Bob Dole's seat earlier that year and finished 13.2 points behind Sam Brownback in the three-candidate primary field. Overall, incumbent senators from Kansas have won 29 times against two defeats in the direct vote era. (Curtis also lost a primary in 1912 to Walter Stubbs, one year before the nation moved to direct elections).


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