Bottom line on today:
Barack Obama did exactly the right thing today, by saying nothing new. Instead, he demonstrated, by his patient, self-critical, and inclusive style, how fit he is to lead our nation forward. Obama does not intend to lead Catholic America, he intends to lead an America in which being Catholic can matter. He job today was not to lose, and to let someone else win.
That winner is Catholic America and yes, Notre Dame. In Fr. John Jenkins, Notre Dame’s energetic, thoughtful President, engaged Catholics have seen in action what an honest and faith-filled Catholic leader can accomplish. His remarks served as the unblinking lighthouse at the crossroads laid by Obama, and it is probably significant that this leadership for Catholic America is found in the broad plains of the Midwest, not the parochial enclaves of Boston or Brooklyn or Baltimore.
Obama opened his remarks today by observing that, in his introduction, Fr. Jenkins took all his best lines. He did, but more importantly, he did not stop there.