Josh Marshall at Talking Points Memo has a couple of postings about Bush dropping a hint at the Vatican that he needs help from the Catholic Church in getting him re-elected. Taking his lead from several bishops who have spoken out against American Roman Catholics who take communion yet hold views on issues that are contrary to church dogma, Bush is nudging the Vatican to encourage “activism” from the Catholic clergy. But it looks as if the campaign is interested in doing more than just denying communion to pro-choice Catholics (read: John Kerry). They want to take it to the level of all the hot-button issues for the evangelicals: abortion, gay marriage, and stem-cell research.
As Josh notes, “we can say we’ve come a long way since 1960 when John F. Kennedy had to foreswear that he’d follow the instructions of the Pope in his decisions of governance. Today we have a Protestant born-again who tries to enlist the Pope to intervene in an American election.”