Samuel Alito will have plenty of chances to show his gratitude to the religious right -- the Supreme Court will consider the federal ban on so-called partial-birth abortions next year, and South Dakota is teeing up another great opportunity down the road -- but he's starting out with a simple word of thanks.
Focus on the Family's James Dobson says he has received a thank-you note from the newest Supreme Court justice. On his radio show, Dobson says that Alito told him that "the prayers of so many people from around the country were a palpable and powerful force" during his road to confirmation.
"As long as I serve on the Supreme Court, I will keep in mind the trust that has been placed in me," Alito told Dobson, and for once we don't begin to doubt him.
Tim Grieve is a senior writer and the author of Salon's War Room blog.