A reader writes:

I wouldn't put it on the Catholic Church in Maine.  First of all, the Church in Maine is far more relevant with the voters who would have voted to repeal the law in the first place.  Secondly, the Church is far from relevant in the socially liberal areas of southern Maine which is where one finds the majority of the state's voters. Socially, southern Maine is far more like an extension of Massachusetts than what people traditionally think of when they envision Maine.  The Diocese might be housed in Portland, but the majority of Catholic voters can be found north of places like Bangor, in the lumber towns.

This doesn't exonerate the Church, but it does call into question your causal theory.  I think the stronger force here is social stagnation.  Most people in central and northern Maine live and die there, and rarely travel beyond it's boarders (with the exception of an occasional trek to the similarly rural areas of Canada).  These are simply not Colbert Nation type voters.

Yes, but when the church makes its priests urge parishioners to deny people civil rights, it does make a difference.

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