[cnn-photo-caption image= http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/POLITICS/03/02/sebelius.abortion.fight/art.sebelius.obama.afp.gi.jpg caption="Then-presidential candidate Barack Obama listens to Gov. Kathleen Sebelius during a January 2008 rally."]
(CNN) - The congressional showdown over Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius' nomination to President Obama's Cabinet may focus less on her qualifications than on the issue of abortion, analysts said.
Obama on Monday nominated Sebelius to head the Department of Health and Human Services. Cabinet nominations require Senate confirmation, and anti-abortion groups already are making their views known.
Analysts suspected that Obama would face a battle over abortion if and when he makes a nomination to the U.S. Supreme Court, but religious conservatives could use Sebelius as a warm-up for the seemingly inevitable fight.
Calling Sebelius an "enemy of the unborn," Catholic League President Bill Donohue said the Kansas governor's nomination is particularly disturbing because the health and human services secretary is one of the few members of the administration who can directly affect abortion policy.
"Sebelius' support for abortion is so far off the charts that she has been publicly criticized by the last three archbishops of Kansas City," Donohue said in a statement.
"My Catholic faith teaches me that all life is sacred, and personally I believe abortion is wrong," she said then. "However, I disagree with the suggestion that criminalizing women and their doctors is an effective means of achieving the goal of reducing the number of abortions in our nation."