Skip to content
Catholic Online Logo

By Deal W Hudson & Keith A Fournier

10/6/2012 (3 years ago)

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Joy Allen will soon be telling her story from a major media platform. Watch for it early next week!


Various groups and individuals are registering their discontent with the form of these voter guides. Why? The guides do not distinguish between the "moral weight" of the various issues, what some call the "non-negotiable" or "settled issues" and prudential issues. 

Highlights

By Deal W Hudson & Keith A Fournier

Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

10/6/2012 (3 years ago)

Published in Politics & Policy

Keywords: Faithful Citizenship, Voter Guides, Catholic vote, US Bishops, Romney, Ryan, Obama, Biden, Pro-Life, Pro-Marriage, Pro-Family, Catholic Vote, Deal W. Hudson, Keith A. Fournier


WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - Things are really starting to percolate in the boiling cauldron of the "Catholic voter." 

The Obama campaign continues to "categorically deny" our reports of the anti-Mormon, and really anti-Catholic, calls made to a Catholic voter in Pennsylvania, Joy Allen. Peter Roff at U.S. News & World Report is staying on top of the story with a must read "On Catholic Push Calls, If Not the Obama Campaign, Who?"

Joy Allen will soon be telling her story from a major media platform. Watch for it early next week!

Now, to the growing concern over the voter guides being issued by state Catholic conferences. It became clear today that the voter guide issued in Pennsylvania, call it the "Alphabetical Guide to Catholic Issues" (my name, not theirs), was produced by collaboration from several state conferences, including our home state of Virginia.

The official title of this guide is "Know the Positions of the Presidential Candidates" and contains the names of President Obama and Gov. Romney at the top, followed by a list of ten issues listed in alphabetical order:

Abortion
Death Penalty
Education Choice
Embryonic Stem Cell Research
Freedom of Religion
Health Care for the Uninsured
Immigration
International Security
Marriage
Poverty Assistance

From the perspective of accuracy, we think the conferences did a good job in briefly and clearly describing the positions taken by the candidates.

However, various groups and individuals are registering their discontent with the form of these voter guides. Why? The guides do not distinguish between the "moral weight" of the various issues, what some call the "non-negotiable" or "settled issues" and prudential issues. 

If you take a look at the guides, you will see that the design and layout of the ten issues makes them appear equal in importance.  Abortion comes first only because it starts with an "A." Marriage, one of the few settled issues, comes in at the 9th position, because it starts with an "M." 

What makes an alphabetical presentation so disappointing is that it appears to ignore what the bishops themselves emphasized in their New Introduction, added last November, to "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship." As the bishops explain in this passage about their intention in writing "Faithful Citizenship":

"It [Faithful Citizenship] does not offer a quantitative listing of issues for equal consideration, but outlines and makes important distinctions among moral issues acknowledging that some involve the clear obligation to oppose intrinsic evils which can never be justified and that others require action to pursue justice and promote the common good. In short, it calls Catholics to form their consciences in the light of their Catholic faith and to bring our moral principles to the debate and decisions about candidates and issues."

In other words, the voter guide issued by the state conferences seems to ignore the bishops' concern that issues not be presented in a "quantitative" manner, which is precisely what an alphabetical list is! 

Those issues, such as abortion, marriage, and embryonic stem cell research that involve intrinsic evils are not distinguished in any way.

This "all issues are equal approach" has long been the tactic of those who publicly support the election and re-election of pro-abortion Catholic politicians.  It's a shame, to say the least, that state Catholic conferences would seem to legitimize this tactic. 

But, there is more to be noted: The issue of "religious liberty," about which the bishops mandated a Fortnight for Freedom is mysteriously renamed "Freedom of Religion." Why?  The public debate over the HHS mandate has been about religious liberty all along, why suddenly change it to something else? 

We certainly hope it wasn't an attempt to play down the unified effort of the bishops to raise the visibility of this fundamental human right and its violation by the Obama administration. 

Another issue, which may be a bit pedantic on our part, but it's worth mentioning: "Health Care for the Uninsured" is listed as one of the ten issues.  Universal health care has long been a priority for the bishops and the USCCB; however, the bishops and the USCCB did not support the health care legislation because it contained federal funding for abortion and no conscience protection for health care workers. 

Why is this important to mention?  A vote against the Affordable Health Care Act should not be considered a rejection of universal health care because the bishops themselves urged Catholic members of Congress not to support it. 

What will happen in terms of practical politics in this?: The inclusion of "Health Care for the Uninsured" in the state voter guides will be used to put an "x" in the column of every member of Congress who voted against the Affordable Health Care Act. 

We are not yet sure how many state Catholic conferences used this form of voter guide, but we guess it's quite widespread.  Given the explicit warning of the New Introduction to "Faithful Citizenship", we never imagined the state Catholic conferences, which represent the bishops of each state, would issue a guide that presents issues in a "quantitative" manner. 

That the state conferences did, in fact, ignore the New Introduction is a serious matter, and we are sure this story is just beginning to roll out. 

We will keep you posted!

---


Pope Francis: end world hunger through 'Prayer and Action'


Copyright 2015 - Distributed by THE CALIFORNIA NETWORK

Pope Francis Prayer Intentions for April 2016
Universal:
Small Farmers: That small farmers may receive a just reward for their precious labor.
Evangelization: African Christians: That Christians in Africa may give witness to love and faith in Jesus Christ amid political-religious conflicts.



Comments


More Politics & Policy

EXCLUSIVE - America, King of Propaganda: U.S. government spends billions to spew LIES to the American people. And guess what you foolish Americans, Congress made it all perfectly legal without your vote Watch

Image of

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Have we won the ground war in Afghanistan? According to the government reports and the media, we sure have. However, this is not what one whistleblower has said, warning as early as 2012 that the American people are being deceived by the government. LOS ANGELES, CA ... continue reading


'He deserves what he gets:' Latino youths violently protest Donald Trump in Orange County Watch

Image of Trump protestors broke out in a violent riot during his Orange County rally (Reuters).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Thousands attended Donald Trump's Orange County rally - then broke out in violent protest. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The Trump rally in Costa Mesa's Orange County Amphitheater was overflowing with supporters. There were several supporters who couldn't fit ... continue reading


New White House rules leave religious groups open to government abuse Watch

Image of Religious groups question the government's new regulations (Shutterstock).

By Kevin J. Jones (CNA/EWTN News)

The Obama administration's new rule for faith-based partnerships has drawn various reactions: one observer warned they could cause problems for partnering religious groups, while another said the action also strengthens these groups' protections against government ... continue reading


Bill De Blasio's ongoing investigation scandal fails to stop him from new fundraising efforts Watch

Image of Mayor Bill de Blasio won't talk - but his staff will (Wikipedia).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio's closest aides have been issued subpoenas to aid the investigation into his shady fundraising strategies. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - The scandal surrounding de Blasio's fundraising has made headlines since 2014, when a leaked ... continue reading


Trump delivers first foreign policy speech, and sounds like a president should! (FULL TEXT) Watch

Image of Donald Trump's first full foreign policy speech sounded relatively presidential, and while short of specifics, was still worth listening to.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Donald Trump delivered his first full speech on foreign policy and he sounded fairly presidential while doing so. Trump is not a politician by trade, but he may make an excellent president thanks to his extensive business acumen. Trump is on the path to the Republican ... continue reading


The olive branch and the barb: Clinton vs. Trump Watch

Image of Trump and Clinton came out on top (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

The race for the presidential nominee has been full of surprises as history-making events, claims of foul play, dirty dealings and controversial statements have cropped up in abundance. Candidates have, at times, been caught up in a tight race, but Tuesday's primary ... continue reading


Trump will be president! Real estate mogul outpacing Romney by whopping 25 percent Watch

Image of Mitt Romney was friendly with Trump when he needed a campaign donation.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Donald Trump is on track to win both the primary and the election, according to the numbers. He is on a better trajectory than Mitt Romney was in 2008. Meanwhile, Hillary Clinton, while winning her primary, is losing support. LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) - ... continue reading


Desperate Cruz and Kasich agree to stop competing, will focus on Trump Watch

Image of Cruz and Kasich are teaming up to block Trump, but their chances of success are slim.

By David Drudge (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Ted Cruz and John Kasich have teamed up to block Donald Trump from winning the Republican nomination. The rivals have agreed to divide upcoming primary states, so they can efficiently spend resources attacking Trump instead of each other. LOS ANGELES, CA (California ... continue reading


Public Bathrooms: Private and safe facilities or free-for-alls? Watch

Image of Apparently, gender-confused children can use whichever restroom they want - without adult supervision to ensure the safety of either gender within the confines of a bathroom (David Bro/ZUMA).

By Thomas Heed (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

Men with bad motives or who live dissolute lifestyles have always been potential sexual threats to women - and now women have been pushed further into their corners as "transgender rights" rise to prominence as the newest notion of the sexual revolution. These rights ... continue reading


'We are in a race against time:' 175 nations sign landmark climate accord Watch

Image of World powers finally agree to make a move to fight climate change (Shutterstock).

By Kenya Sinclair (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)

World leaders have finally realized the destruction they have been allowing the planet to endure - and the ensuing consequences. LOS ANGELES, CA (Catholic Online) - A shocking number of 175 global leaders gathered at the United Nations headquarters to sign the Paris ... continue reading


All Politics & Policy News

Newsletters

Newsletter Sign Up icon

Stay up to date with the latest news, information, and special offers

Subscribe to Catholic OnlineYouTube Channel

the FEED
by Catholic Online

Daily Readings

Reading 1, Acts 15:1-2, 22-29
1 Then some men came down from Judaea and taught the brothers, 'Unless ... Read More

Psalm, Psalms 67:2-3, 5, 6, 8
2 Then the earth will acknowledge your ways, and all nations your power ... Read More

Gospel, John 14:23-29
23 Jesus replied: Anyone who loves me will keep my word, and my Father ... Read More

Reading 2, Revelation 21:10-14, 22-23
10 In the spirit, he carried me to the top of a very high mountain, and ... Read More

Saint of the Day

Saint of the Day for May 1st, 2016 Image

St. Marculf
May 1: Marculf is also known as Marcoul. He was born at ... Read More