Papal election: who’re the favourites?

Conclave Cams and Twitter bans aside, this conclave is unique in many ways. One of the main reasons for the suspense is that, despite the best efforts of analysts, no one has really been able to predict who will become the next Pope. The race is wide open

 The perils of trying to predict the conclave.

 An interesting piece, in English, from Corriere della Sera’s blog on the Church’s search for a new pontiff:

Main points – don’t assume that cardinals of the same nationality vote together. Don’t assume that previous conclaves will provide a guide to this one. Don’t be fooled by media hype about an African/American/Latin American pope. In fact don’t assume anything. Just sit back, enjoy the ride and wait for the white smoke.

The favourites?

As the cardinals prepare to cast their first votes in the Sistine Chapel this afternoon [that would be about nine pm India time], the Italian press reckon the front-runner is Angelo Scola, the archbishop of Milan, who can count on up to 50 votes.

Next comes Odilo Scherer, the archbishop of Sao Paolo in Brazil, with a guaranteed 15-18 votes, and then Timothy Dolan, the ebullient archbishop of New York with a penchant for peanut butter, who can count on 10-15 votes.

Other names in the frame are Sean O’Malley, the “Capuchin cardinal” from Boston, and Marc Ouellet, the French Canadian head of the Congregation for Bishops, a Vatican department.

But seasoned Vaticanistas warn against reading too much into any of this. Only the cardinals know how they will vote, there is likely to be great fluidity in the conclave, and the bar is a high one – to become Pope, a cardinal has to have two-thirds of the vote – that is, the unequivocal support of 77 of his brother “princes of the church”.

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Posted by on March 12, 2013. Filed under Breaking News,Europe. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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