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Hudson and Fournier: Catholic Countdown to Election 2012, Day 27. Debating the Obama Catholics

By Deal W. Hudson & Keith A. Fournier
October 10th, 2012
Catholic Online (

Over the past few years, both of us have been thrust into debates with various Obama surrogates. Whether on radio, TV, or in print, the experience is disconcerting and would be dispiriting if it were not, at times, so humorous. 

WASHINGTON, DC (Catholic Online) - Over the past few years, both of us have been thrust into debates with various Obama surrogates. Whether on radio, TV, or in print, the experience is disconcerting and would be dispiriting if it were not so humorous. 

Obama's chief Catholic surrogates include James Salt of Catholics United, Steve Krueger at Catholic Democrats, Jon O'Brien of Catholics for Choice, Dr. Stephen Schneck who teaches politics at the Catholic University of America, Nick Cafardi former dean of the Duquesne University School of Law, and Kathleen Kennedy Townsend whose latest book is entitled, Failing America's Faithful: How Today's Churches are Mixing God with Politics and Losing Their Way.

These are the names you see attached to statements defending President Obama and other pro-abortion politicians for their latest attempts to broaden the government's abortion mandate, such as the federal funding for abortion contained in the Affordable Health Care Act.  All of them simply deny it is there, and launch into an elaborate explanation of how the program is "set up." 

Their explanation makes its even clearer why Catholic institutions should resist the HHS mandate They are all but admitting that the insurance program is an elaborate ruse designed to give Catholic institutions 'cover.' Sr. Carol Keehan, president of the Catholic Health Association, initially supported the Affordable Health Care Acting, and denied the presence of federal funding for abortion, but changed her mind after the egregious violation of religious liberty which was caused by the announcement of the HHS mandate.

What a relief it is to see that even for an Obama surrogate there is a limit to the pretense. Not so, however, with the others, who still say things like, 'No president in history has defended the religious liberty of Catholics like President Obama!' Yes, you are reading that correctly; these words were spoken by an Obama surrogate on Ave Maria Radio on Tuesday. (Tuesday's debate with Deal Hudson is not yet posted, but should be shortly). 

If you listen to the debate you will also hear this Obama supporter arguing that none of the contraceptives covered by the HHS mandate are actually abortifacients. When asked whether or not, if it was true, that it meant the HHS mandate was a violation of religious liberty, there was no response.  

In addition to Sr. Carol Keehan, another Obama supporter, seems to have kept his promise to no longer aid and abet Obama's policies. In 2008, Prof. Doug Kmiec was easily the leading Catholic surrogate for Obama/Biden, but after the HHS mandate, Kmiec declared he was "without a candidate." Kmiec resigned from his ambassadorial post in Malta in April, 2011 after the State Department accused him of spending too much time on his non-diplomatic interests. Kmiec has maintained a low profile, thus far, in the 2012 election. 

Another tactic of these Obama surrogates is to latch onto the latest academic study that purports to legitimize the president policies.  The latest of these is a report published this week by Washington University that the HHS mandate of contraception coverage will actually lower the number of abortions nationwide. The claims of this report fall to pieces the moment they are inspected with any academic rigor, as seen here. But you can be sure the Obama Catholics will be touting the Washington University study until election day -- and we would not be surprised if Vice President Biden cites it in his debate with Congressman Paul Ryan on Thursday evening.

Let's hope that Ryan is familiar with a study by Planned Parenthood's own Guttmacher Institute, which argued in 2007, that any government funding for abortion dramatically increases the number of abortions.  Their study of Medicaid funding showed "18 to 35 percent of women who would have had an abortion continued their pregnancies after Medicaid funding was cut off." In other words, the more government funding for abortion, the more abortion, by as much as 35 percent.Even if the Washington University study was true, the drop in abortions would be far outweighed by the gain in abortions caused by the new federal funding.

The strategy of the Obama surrogates is misrepresentation on a vast scale. In other words it's a big lie. History has shown the bigger the lie the more likely it is to be believed. Why?  Read the explanation by a master of the big lie:

"The size of the lie is a definite factor in causing it to be believed, for the vast masses of a nation are in the depths of their hearts more easily deceived than they are consciously and intentionally bad. The primitive simplicity of their minds renders them a more easy prey to a big lie than a small one, for they themselves often tell little lies, but would be ashamed to tell big lies." (Adolph Hitler, Mein Kampf, 14th Edition, 1936.)

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