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What's Next

So... the Catholic Church has succeeded in defeating a referendum in Italy by encouraging its members to not vote.

Great. Abstinence-only elections. I suppose this will be the next faith-based initiative out of the Bush Administration. "Practice safe elections: Just don't vote."

I don't know why we didn't see it coming.


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You mean this?

Indeed. Sorry. My bad.

Here is a permanent NYT link for that article, from which:

A law that imposes strict rules on assisted fertility will remain on the books, after the failure on Monday of a hard-fought referendum that rubbed into one of Italy's sorest spots: the relationship between church and state.

The fight leading up to two days of voting on Sunday and Monday mobilized the nation's political and religious establishments like few others, as the leadership of the Roman Catholic Church - including the new pope, Benedict XVI - urged Italians to boycott the referendum.

In the end, the outcome was not even close. Only 26 percent of as many as 50 million eligible Italians voted, meaning that the referendum automatically failed, with the votes uncounted, in its attempt to repeal four crucial sections of a restrictive fertility law passed last year. For the referendum to be valid, 50 percent of eligible voters had to take part.

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