CNN Political Correspondent
If Sonia Sotomayor is confirmed there will be six Catholics on the Supreme Court (Roberts, Kennedy, Scalia, Thomas, Alito and Sotomayor). Two Jews (Ginsburg and Breyer). And one Protestant. (Stevens).
Here's the breakdown in the overall U.S. population:
Protestant 51.3%, Roman Catholic 23.9%, Mormon 1.7%, other Christian 1.6%, Jewish 1.7%, Buddhist 0.7%, Muslim 0.6%, other or unspecified 2.5%, unaffiliated 12.1%, none 4% (2007 est.)
Religion –- at least, religious affiliation - was once a hot issue in Supreme Court nominations. But no longer.
When John Kerry, also Catholic, ran for President in 2004, no one seemed to care except the Catholic Church – and they opposed him because he did not follow church teachings on abortion.
Gender and race? Those do matter. If Republicans appear to be treating Sotomayor unfairly, they could pay a terrible price at the polls.
[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2008/POLITICS/06/22/campaign.wrap/art.obamamccain.gi.jpg]Bill Schneider
CNN Senior Political Analyst
After sporting a lead of up to 9 percent weeks ago, Barack Obama now leads John McCain by just one point in CNN’s poll of polls.
Why is the race now so close? For the same reason the Democratic primaries were: McCain is following the Hillary Clinton playbook. Remember her controversial 3 A.M. ad? This month, we had a 3 A.M. moment. Russia invaded Georgia, and John McCain touted his experience and military expertise saying:
“…and in the term of the next President, skillful handling of such a crisis could be the difference between temporary hardship and far-reaching disaster.”
Obama on the other hand emphasized his judgment.
“The next commander-in-chief is going to have to exercise the best possible judgment in getting us through these difficult times.”
Who do the voters think is better qualified to deal with Russia? FULL POST
Senior political analyst
Something Hillary Clinton said at a children’s hospital in Portland, Oregon, last week caught my eye:
"How can anyone run for Democratic nominee for President and not have a universal health care plan? This is a huge, huge difference and one I feel passionately about.’’
With that, she defined her biggest issue difference with Obama. In fact, one of her only issue differences with Obama (unless you count the gas tax holiday, which is silly).
This could be the line-in-the-sand issue Clinton takes to the convention, demanding a platform plank calling for universal health care as a victory for her campaign.
Reagan did that in 1976, demanding that the Republican Party repudiate the Nixon-Ford policy of détente (it did).
Kennedy did that in 1980, demanding that the Democratic Party endorse a big jobs program (it didn’t).
Ford and Carter both went on to lose.
CNN Senior Political Analyst
What the Pennsylvania primary really means:
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