What do North Carolina Senator Kay Hagen and Kentucky Senator Rand Paul have in common? They are both rooting for the same guy, Greg Bannon, to win the GOP primary in North Carolina today. The winner of that primary will face Hagen in November and she would like nothing better than to face Bannon, a Tea Party champion who holds extreme views on any number of issues. Sen. Paul no doubt has his eyes on the GOP presidential primary in 2016 and the power of the Tea Party to get behind his campaign.
The news that Condi Rice has bowed out of her planned speaking engagement at Rutgers University's graduation ceremony is disturbing. Of course, I am secretly glad that somebody other than a Catholic school is having this kind of discussion. But, Rice is not just a person of stature and intellect, the kind of person you would want giving a graduation speech, she is a remarkable person.
Lorena O'Neil, at Oxymedia, profiles Los Angeles Archbishop Jose Gomez and does a good job capturing the essence of why he is emerging as a leader in the U.S. Church.
Distinctly Catholic: Many things jump out from the survey's data, but if there is an overall theme, it is that parishes with Hispanic ministry are vibrant.
I am in full agreement with RNS's Mark Silk that Cardinal Sean O'Malley's press conference on Saturday was stunning and, hopefully, a sign that the entire Church is finally going to climb out of denial about the crime of sexually abusing minors. Silk, like NCR, has been tough as tough can be on this subject, so when he is hopeful, at least guardedly hopeful, we can all hope we are on the right track.
Over at Mirror of Justice, Thomas Berg has some very thoughtful reflections on the death this weekend of former Congressman Jim Oberstar. In a Congress of pygmies, Oberstar was a giant among men.
The National Catholic Register, and its owners EWTN, appear to be campaigning for the job of dissenters-in-chief. Of course, that label was hurled against NCR, our NCR, for years, so it will at least be fun to see how the shoe fits on the right foot instead of the left. But, who in their, ehem, right mind could look out at the Church and be concerned about Pope Francis and the effect he is having on the Church?
Distinctly Catholic: That the future of the U.S. Catholic church is largely Hispanic is well known but not understood. This report seeks to provide data to leaders making decisions.
Fascinating interview on Salt & Light television with longtime Vaticanologist Gerard O'Connell:
The April numbers on employment are in and they are better than expected. The economy added 288,000 jobs last month. As well, the numbers for March and February were revised upward. And, the number of long-term unemployed has declined by 908,000 in the past year but still, 3.5 million people have been unemployed for longer than nine months. There is work to do, but the numbers are moving in the right direction.