1960.  That’s when the second Catholic in the history of the US was nominated for the POTUS.  Had JFK been a member of any mainstream Protestatant religion, the results of the election might not have been so close.  Had Pope John XXIII invited JFK to meet with him during the election, he would probably have lost.

In 2013 as the College of Cardinals were gathering to select Pope Benedict XVI’s successor, I looked at the list of those that someone had put together as being “papable.”  When the puff of white smoke was followed with the announcement that the new pope would be Jorge Mario Bergoglio, my response was a delighted “uh oh.”

Bernie Sanders meets Pope Francis at the Vatican The Guardian.

The Hillary fans worked themselves into pretzels when it was announced that Sanders had been invited to a conference at the Vatican being held by Pontifical Academy of Social Sciences.  The pretzels included:

-Sanders wasn’t invited.  He’s a gate-crasher.

-It wasn’t “The Vatican” or Pope that invited him.  Bernie lied!  (Didn’t matter that Bernie never said the Pope had issued the invitation.)

-The invitation isn’t an honor.  It’s just a stupid conference.

-The Pope won’t meet with Bernie.  Bernie lied and said he would.  (Didn’t matter than Bernie didn’t say that.)

-Best of all, as reported by The Hill, Biden: ‘I doubt’ Pope Francis embraces Sanders’s ideas.

…to suggest that the pope embraces Bernie’s policies, I doubt that very much,” he told CNBC reporter John Hardwood. “I don’t know, [but] I doubt it very much. No, I don’t think it could be read that way at all.”

Biden on Friday explained how his understanding of Catholic doctrine might depart from Sanders’s rhetoric.
“I was raised in a tradition called Catholic social doctrine,” he said. “It is that is legitimate to look out for yourself, but never at the direct expense of someone else. It is legitimate to do well, but never at the expense of not looking at what’s behind you.”

That “understanding of Catholic doctrine” fits well with Biden’s IWR vote and his sponsorship of the 2001 and vote for the 2005 Bankruptcy bills. (Italics for corrections)  Neither fits well with Catholic doctrine since Pope John XXIII.  Perhaps it’s easier for lapsed Catholics than practicing Catholics to see that.

In keeping with the Vatican’s practice of releasing limited information, we are told the following about Sanders’ visit after the conference:

Sanders and his wife, Jane, stayed overnight at the papal residence, in the Domus Santa Marta hotel in the Vatican gardens, on the same floor as the pope, and were spotted at the hotel reception carrying their own bags.

Dr Jeffrey Sachs, a Sanders foreign policy adviser and adviser to the UN on climate change, said there were no photographs taken of the meeting.

He said the couple met Pope Francis in the foyer of the hotel as he was leaving for Greece. The meeting lasted about five minutes, Sachs said.

White House Overnight Guest price?  A modest  $400.  The Domus Santa Marta hotel, priceless?

The Domus Sanctae Marthae, named after St. Martha, is a five-story building on the edge of Vatican City.
While offering relative comfort, the residence is not a luxury hotel. The building has 105 two-room suites and 26 singles; about half of the rooms are occupied by the permanent residents. Each suite has a sitting room with a desk, three chairs, a cabinet and large closet; a bedroom with dresser, night table and clothes stand; and a private bathroom with a shower.


In addition to the monsignors who live there, members of pontifical academies who have meetings in Rome (for example, members of the Pontifical Academy for Life and the Pontifical Academy of Sciences), can also reside for a few days in the Domus. Other visitors have occasionally been permitted to stay there, and I too have had the great privilege of staying in the Domus on occasion. [emp added]

So, Hillary fans and Mr. Vice-President suck on that — the Sanders were invited because Bernie is a good man.