At this time of year, our thoughts drift to those who can’t be with us for our holiday season. Some of us will think about those who are working at grocery stores or convenience stores instead of being with their loved ones. Others will ponder how sad it is that police, fire, and hospital workers have to be on duty to provide our families with safety and security. Still more will consider those serving in the Armed Forces overseas rather than being surrounded with their friends and family.

But not me; this year, more than any other, I’ll be thinking of those poor Senators who will be forced to work much harder than they expected this holiday season. Normally, you see, from the beginning of Advent until Epiphany, the Senate is dormant. That way, the senators can both set up and take down their Christmas tree as well as wrap all of the gifts for everyone in their neighborhood. This holiday season, though, Harry Reid, the Senate Majority Leader, is threatening to force them to work for much of the holiday. Because of their procrastination, Reid claims that the Senate has a lot of unfinished work to accomplish before this Congress ends on January 4.

But John Kyl, for one, is not taking this affront lying down. As he succinctly put it, “It is impossible to do all of the things that the majority leader laid out, frankly, without disrespecting the institution and without disrespecting one of the two holiest of holidays for Christians and the families of all of the Senate, not just the senators themselves but all of the staff.”

In order to gauge the seriousness of this statement, let’s figure out whether the good senator is using religion to amplify his political beliefs. As is well known, Harry Reid is a Mormon. So Kyl’s allusion to religion is intended to compare Reid’s religion to Christianity. I wonder if later this year, when the presumptive Republican presidential frontrunner, Mitt Romney, enters the race, will Kyl make the same comparison? We shall see.