When you consider the oceans of ink poured out in coverage of a certain U.S. House of Representatives race down in Georgia, it's interesting how little attention was devoted to a powerful component in the life of winner Karen Handel.
Want to guess what was missing in the mainstream coverage? Hang on, because we will get to that (sssssshhhhhh, she's a Roman Catholic) shortly.
But first, I want to flashback a few weeks to a related controversy. You might recall that Democratic National Committee Chairman Tom Perez made news when he proclaimed that:
"Every Democrat, like every American," he said, "should support a woman's right to make her own choices about her body and her health. This is not negotiable and should not change city by city or state by state." In fact, he added, "every candidate who runs as a Democrat" should affirm abortion rights.
As you would imagine, Kristen Day was not amused. She serves as executive director for the Democrats for Life of America network. Neither were Catholics from all over the political and theological spectrum -- from Cardinal Timothy Dolan to Father James "Colbert Report chaplain" Martin. Day noted:
"Tom Perez needs to know that what he is saying isn't what lots of Democrats are thinking. It's not what Democrats are thinking in places like Nebraska -- places between the coasts where Democrats are trying to find candidates who are the right fit for their congressional districts or people to run for governor who fit their states."
Wait, she had more to say:
"The Democratic Party is pretty weak in large parts of America," said Day. "Can we really afford to push people away right now? I'm not sure that New York City and West Coast values are going to work with lots of voters in the heartland and down South."
Maybe this issue is relevant to the Georgia race? To be blunt, would Handel have had a tougher time winning if her opponent was a married, pro-life Democrat (or one interested in centrist compromises on that issue) from her district who could answer a question or two about his religious convictions in non-Nones language?
So, how much attention did mainstream news outlets devote to Handel's faith and moral convictions? The answer, of course, is zero, zip, nada, nul, niches, niente.