One of the unusual things about Political Animal is that we don’t “go dark” on weekends, and we’ve found some great talent to chip in and provide a change of pace on Saturdays and Sundays, meanwhile allowing me the down-time necessary to avoid a physical and mental breakdown. We’ll have an announcement directly about how we’ll handle Weekend Blogging in 2014, but in the meantime, I hope it’s another reason you might consider making a tax-deductible donation during our fundraising season. Thank you!

Here’s some midday news/views trail mix for your noshing needs:

* Republican AG candidate in VA, Mark Obenshain, expected to concede race tomorrow as recounts keep adding votes to his opponent’s margin.

* That jeweler’s eye for excellence, Peggy Noonan, fears Obama will blow up the world because his staff’s incompetent. Seriously.

* Chris Cillizza points to ad based on PolitiFact “lie of the year” rating for Obama’s health care “promise” as ur-model for 2014.

* U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke basically says Roman Curia will outlive Pope Francis.

* Harris Interactive poll on generational trends in belief systems finds over-68s bullish on God but sharply less likely to believe in ghosts, witches or reincarnation.

And in non-political news:

* Elite football coaches almost standing in line to deny interest in University of Texas gig. A lot of them are getting raises for being “mentioned,” of course.

As we break for a late lunch, here’s Ry Cooder in 1976 performing “Jesus on the Mainline.” I saw him do this song in a pouring rain at JazzFest in the early 1990s, and there was much dancing in the mud.

Ed Kilgore

Ed Kilgore is a political columnist for New York and managing editor at the Democratic Strategist website. He was a contributing writer at the Washington Monthly from January 2012 until November 2015, and was the principal contributor to the Political Animal blog.