Obama Not Making a Connection With Catholics

Clinton's Hispanic-Catholic base may prove key in coming contests
By Harry Kimball,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 2, 2008 10:24 AM CST
Democratic presidential hopeful, Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton, D-N.Y., speaks to the congregation during services at the Northminster Presbyterian Church in Columbia, S.C., Sunday, Jan. 13, 2008. (AP Photo/Elise...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama's poor primary showings with Catholic voters could become more problematic in Catholic-heavy states like Pennsylvania and Rhode Island, Politico reports. Despite Obama's string of victories, Hillary Clinton has consistently grabbed a large percentage of Catholics, in part due to her popularity with majority-Catholic Hispanics. Analysts and Catholic politicians agree there's no singular reason that explains the coolness to Obama.

Team Obama denies a “Catholic gap”—and if he seals the deal in Texas and Ohio March 4 it may not matter. But Rhode island, which also votes that day, is by far the most Catholic state in the nation. And on April 22 in Pennsylvania, where Philadelphia and Pittsburgh have influential Catholic populations, Obama might also consider a little prayer.