“Pro-Life Democrat”: A Contradiction in Terms?

Attention Californians: TCT’s founding editor-in-chief, Robert Royal, will be in the Golden State later this month. Here’s Bob’s schedule, with a couple of links for more information (and more to come): Sacramento Catholic Forum, noon on Thursday February 18; Kolbe Academy & Trinity Prep, Napa CA, 7:00 PM on Friday February 19; University of Santa Barbara, Catholic Chaplaincy, 6:30 PM Monday February 22; and Claremont McKenna College, 4:00 PM Tuesday February 23.

In a previous column, I wrote about pro-life Catholics who vote Democratic because of stereotypes of Republicans as opposed to civil rights and solidarity with the poor, in spite of contrary evidence from history.

Another common view, not just among Catholics, is that Democrats are “the abortion party.” Is this also a stereotype? Especially for those of us who know pro-lifers who consistently vote Democratic, it seems a blanket generalization. But the tendencies during the Obama administration offer grounds for the generalization.

Are there any pro-life appointees within the present administration? Or has a “litmus test” been consistently applied in the appointment of cabinet members, nomination of judgeships, appointment of leaders of Federal agencies, etc.?

Should there be any doubt, the 2012 Democratic Party Platform spells out that “litmus test”:

The Democratic Party strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade and a woman’s right to make decisions regarding her pregnancy, including a safe and legal abortion, regardless of ability to pay. We oppose any and all efforts to weaken or undermine that right. Abortion is an intensely personal decision between a woman, her family, her doctor, and her clergy; there is no place for politicians or government to get in the way.

This platform also supports some social changes that might make abortion less frequent. But there is no question: The right to procure an abortion is absolute, set in stone, so to speak. Just how does a sincere pro-life Democrat deal with such a stark pro-abortion position?

Perhaps the label “pro-abortion party” became prominent in 2010 in the aftermath of Democratic Rep. Bart Stupak’s weak attempt to keep abortion out of Obamacare, by declaring that Obama had agreed to sign Executive Order 13535, applying the Hyde Amendment, which restricts federal funding of abortion, in Obamacare. Obama signed the order, which did not have the force of law; and thus the main roadblock to passage of the Affordable Care Act was removed. ACA became the law of the land.

Stupak resigned soon afterwards, and the Democrats sustained considerable losses in the Congressional elections that year. Fourteen pro-life Democrats either retired from Congress or were defeated by Republicans; and Republicans gained control of the House of Representatives.

A minority within the minority party
A minority within the minority party

That executive order, which was negotiated to overcome the impasse about Obamacare, turned out to be just a strategic dodge. Bart Stupak, realizing that he had been hoodwinked, complained that the 2012 HHS mandate requiring private health insurance plans to include coverage for contraceptive drugs, sterilizations and abortion-inducing drugs violated Obama’s agreement: “I am perplexed and disappointed that, having negotiated the executive order with the president, not only does the HHS mandate violate the executive order but it also violates statutory law.”

On the individual level, no broad generalizations can be made. Polls indicate that a sizable minority of Democrats describe themselves as pro-life. In a 2013 Gallup poll, almost a third (29 percent) of Democrats identified themselves as “pro-life” (as compared to 67 percent of Republicans in that same poll). But this claim to be “pro-life” does not necessarily imply complete opposition to abortion. It may include exceptions for rape, incest, or threats to the life of the mother, and/or restrictions of abortion to twenty weeks or less of a pregnancy.

The most visible organization of pro-life Democrats is the DFLA (Democrats for Life of America). This organization no doubt includes many members completely against abortion, but its aims, working in the context of liberal fellow Democrats, are necessarily indirect and subdued. Major objectives include maternity leaves, parental consent for minors seeking abortion, 24-hour waiting periods, ultrasound requirements for women considering abortion, and Obamacare support for pregnancy.

In the House of Representatives DFLA has lobbied for the defunding of Planned Parenthood, for the Pain-Capable Unborn Protection Act (HR 36), for the No Taxpayer Funding of Abortion Act (H.R. 7), for the Born-Alive Abortion Survivors Protection Act (H.R. 3504), and for defeat of an amendment to the 21st Century Cures Act (H.R. 6), which would allow funding of abortion through NIH.

DFLA puts pressure on Democrats in Congress via a rating system, with regard to their support of pro-life bills or provisions. Unfortunately, only a few Democrats get 100 percent – two Senators, Donnelly and Manchin, and two House Members, Lipinski and Peterson.

On the one hand, it is good to know that there are at least a minority of “card-carrying” Democrats actively trying to advocate for life within a wholly unsympathetic framework. On the other hand, you have to wonder whether they are not involved in a Sisyphean task – like a Mafia member remaining in the Mafia to minimize crime and cruelty, and make the Mafia more humane.

The United Sates is at present one of the most abortion-permissive countries in the world. Many Democrats, following the lead of Bernie Sanders, want to imitate Europe in becoming socialist. Would they also want to imitate most European countries in restrictions on abortion (usually at twelve weeks)? Probably not.

But the right to life is the most basic of all rights, and the indispensable foundation for all the multiple rights Democrats pride themselves on supporting.

The multiple attempts on the part of DFLA to minimize abortions are laudable, especially if you believe that it may be impossible to enforce laws that would make abortion illegal throughout the country. But pessimism about enforcement may be unwarranted. Gallup polls for the last ten years, with the exception of 2006, consistently indicate that slightly over 70 percent of Americans believe either that abortion should be prohibited completely, or allowed only under certain conditions.

The DFLA approach is geared to compromise – a necessity within the current Democratic party. A compromise about the “three exceptions” might make a few more Democrats pro-life. But support for a complete ban on elective abortions among Democrats? It’s like trying to fit a square peg into a round hole.

Howard Kainz

Howard Kainz

Howard Kainz is emeritus professor of philosophy at Marquette University. His most recent publications include Natural Law: an Introduction and Reexamination (2004), Five Metaphysical Paradoxes (The 2006 Marquette Aquinas Lecture), The Philosophy of Human Nature (2008), and The Existence of God and the Faith-Instinct (2010).

  • Dave Fladlien

    I agree there is a big problem in the Democratic Party, or rather several, but that’s not the only location with problems. Will someone tell me, please, why we — the Catholic Church — excommunicate a woman who panics and has an abortion, but take no action at all against the politicians who promote, campaign for, and vote for abortion on demand? That makes no sense at all, and if we the Catholic Church want even mild change about abortion, we have to start making one ourselves: excommunicate the politicians, not a terrified pregnant woman who does something wrong because she doesn’t see any way out of her situation. We have our priorities really wrong on this point.

    • Mike Feehan

      Dave, great point…I think one of the reasons is is that the bishops and cardinals fear man more than God, that most of them are weak cowards who would rather remain friends, attend the same functions with folks like Biden, for example, rather than take a stand….A perfect example is another weak coward in Cardinal Wuerl, what a weak coward he is….I know plenty about these weak cowards as we had Cardinal George for 17 years and he NEVER, EVER EXCOMMUNICATED a Pro abortion politician, he just sat there like most of them do and gave some nice Pro Life TALK….He didn’t have the GUTS to take a stand for Christ and Cupich is even more of a joke when it comes to orthodoxy.

      • Warren Goddard

        Cdl. Wuerl an underling of Cdl. Wright,
        an underling of Cdl. Cushing who had Fr. Leonard Feeney excommunicated for not shutting up on the necessity of being Catholic for salvation.

      • Dave Fladlien

        Thanks Mike. I think I learn as much on this site from good comments like yours right here as I do from the articles. I didn’t realize just how bad it was until a few people gave examples of pressures brought on priests to stay silent, for financial or political reasons. I wondered why they didn’t say anything, but never realized it came from “the top” bishops in our country.

        Something is really wrong here: it isn’t just poor old Francis, a lot of these guys were appointed before his time, and no way were Benedict and John Paul II soft on abortion. But however it happened, we’re here now and we need the National Catholic Conference to do something about it, but that is never going to happen while it’s run by the same irresponsible people that are already failing to act.

        There has to be a solution to get our Church moving, but I admit right now I don’t know what that solution is.

    • Steven Barrett

      Too bad you left out so-called, er self-proclaimed, pro-life, pro-family Republicans (and some extra-conservative Democrats) who don’t mind supporting the NRA’s take it or leave it (and take no prisoners) stands on responsible gun safety; tax breaks for companies enabling them to pull out of the United States, thus putting entire families incomes and abilities to keep their own homes (so necessary for family, i.e. early childhood stability and development); and a slew of other breaks for the super wealthy all the while putting the tab for all these goodies practically given to the wealthy by their all too willing “fiscally conservative” knaves in Congress … on the backs of the poor? Why are you supporting the Grand Old Pharisees who have contributed to more poorer mothers and their parents, other elders and fathers, wed or otherwise, into counseling these young and panicked women into sacrificing their own offspring because their damn national and in some cases, state governments decided that the lives of the poor have less value? Poor babies lives matter, too! And only the Democrats are taking the steps necessary to call out the ever reliably penurious Republicans for their hypocritical callousness: Why’s that?

      • FreemenRtrue

        Your post is full of lies, sorry. Every President, R&D, has supported NAFTA and like treaties which displace US labor. Big corporate money talks in government. Big government money talks in our church by silencing clerics. The NRA is overwhelmingly committed to gun safety and responsible gun ownership by law abiding citizens. Our country is $20 Trillion in debt and massive welfare programs have simply aided in the destruction of families. Single motherhood is the leading indicator of poverty. The GOP generally opposes abortion contrary to your rant. I find your post to be mendaciously small minded and hypocritical to the extreme.

      • Nancy Lynne

        Same old, same old Democrat talking points. Pro-life is anti-abortion. Abortion is an intrinsic evil. All the other points you make about the NRA, taxes, the rich and the poor are matters of prudential judgement upon which we may disagree in good faith.

      • Harry

        Mr. Kainz provided an excerpt from the Democrat Party Platform. Here is one from the Republican Party platform (see the GOP website):

        Faithful to the “self-evident” truths enshrined in the Declaration of Independence, we assert the sanctity of human life and affirm that the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed. We support a human life amendment to the Constitution and endorse legislation to make clear that the Fourteenth Amendment’s protections apply to unborn children.

        Yes. Those are mere words and without the willingness to turn the intentions expressed in the platform into reality, that is all they are.

        Yes. The Republican party — the “establishment” Republicans, anyway — serve the donor class, multinationals and themselves, not the common good.

        The Democrat platform consists of mere words, too. They turn those words into reality: the greatest holocaust of innocent human life in the history of the world.

        The Democrats and the establishment Republicans comprise a corrupt, self-serving ruling class that needs to be replaced with people who have some conception of the fact that the state exists for humanity, not humanity for the state. Humanity is not a herd for the ruling class to manage with godless social engineering. In a citizen government of the people we are supposed to have public servants, not rulers of the people.

      • Dave Fladlien

        Well Steven, I didn’t raise any of these subjects, but since you did, I’ll try hard to give you a meaningful response, and ask the editors to bear with the unavoidable length of this comment —

        I’m pro-life (for several reasons), but it fits right in — as it should — with everything else that I am. I’m also pro-business, pro-personal-freedom, and yes, pro-gun-rights (though not as all-emcompassing as the NRA). Above all, I’m pro-Christ. In between the first group and the pro-Christ, is the most important earthly one for me: I’m pro-opportunity. I believe in dreams, and in people having not only the freedom but the opportunity to try to make those dreams come true. That’s what I’m doing myself: as I think I indicated to you before, I’m Managing Partner of an international start-up company. I’m not a wealthy Wall Street financier (not that all of them are bad people either), but I’m what business is really about: a person trying to make a dream come true, and bring others along with me in success.

        So among other reasons, I’m pro-life for the same reason I was anti-draft many decades ago (and would be again): you can’t have much opportunity if you’re dead. And I believe people should be free, not enslaved by what George Orwell so properly called Big Brother.

        My business partner has a good friend who was paralyzed by a stroke recently. That person needs help, she simply can’t care for herself. That situation, or being blind or unable to breath, severely mentally ill, etc., is what charities and legitimate government programs should be for. Instead, we have bankrupted our society on poverty programs for those who need opportunity, not government programs, not only to the detriment of the opportunity they need, but to their detriment as well. I was around when the Great Society started; like many others, I thought it was good idea. It wasn’t. Now our society is bankrupt, and we have just as high a percentage of people in poverty as before. As one writer put it recently, you’d think the people running these programs were trying to fail. They’ve spent billions and accomplished nothing lasting.

        I don’t mean to throw rocks at you, but I think you’re trying to justify supporting a socialist candidate with a strong anti-life position. You no doubt have some reasons that seem good, maybe even compelling, to you. For sure there are abuses in the business world that should be fixed. But I wish you could meet me, and the people I’m working with, people who work but don’t get paid, in a world where increasingly people get paid but don’t work. I think you’d find that we are not the monsters you seem to believe we are. We’re people with hopes and dreams, and people trying to make those hopes and dreams come true. We want opportunity for everyone, including the unborn.

  • James S.

    Nice article. I learned things I did not know from it. As you note, the Democratic Party platform says that it “strongly and unequivocally supports Roe v. Wade,” which I interpret to mean the decision itself and not necessarily the legal reasoning that went into it, which is a weakness that should be exploited.

  • Joe_NS

    “An intensely personal decision.”

    There’s a ripe bit of tendentious garbage, the never-failing font of absolution for the brain dead and the abortionist.

    Says nothing, excuses everything.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      It brings to mind an observation of Wittgenstein,in another context, but entirely applicable: “One would like to say: whatever is going to seem right to me is right. And that only means that here we can’t talk about ‘right’”

      • Joe_NS

        Quel convenient, n’est-ce pas?

    • Steven P Glynn

      Indeed, wouldn’t killing one’s wife also be “an intensely personal decision”?
      How does something being personal absolve it from being evil?

      • Joe_NS

        You wouldn’t understand.

        It’s personal.

        Intensely.

  • Mike Feehan

    Yes, too darn bad, as one of the commenters below points out, that most of the bishops and cardinals in this church don’t have the GUTS, THE GUTS, to enforce Canon Law 915 OR CLEAR AS DAY SCRIPTURE….YES, THE BIBLE, THE BIBLE, SUPERCEDES everything and in 1 Corinthians 5:11-13, it says to NOT EVEN ASSOCIATE with folks who are sexually immoral, drunkards, fornicators, etc, etc, that list is not all inclusive and if the list includes those actions, then one can infer that it would also apply to supporting acts of child slaughter which is what abortion is….Some other verses to look at are Matthew 18:15-17 which refers to confronting a brother or sister in sin and if he or she refuses to repent, then to treat him or her like a tax collector…
    I live near Chicago and met Cupich last March, true story, and I asked him about Durbin’s support of abortion….He told me that Dick Durbin never had an abortion, I told him that, so what, he supports it….He then told me that I needed to take up my beef with the Supreme Court, that Dick Durbin never had an abortion….AND THIS is coming from an Archbishop in the 3rd largest Archdiocese in the country??? Cupich has also said publically that he has no problem giving out Communion to Pro abortion politicians because he believes that they can have grace to effect “conversion” by receiving Communion….LAST I CHECKED, Durbin is STILL Pro Murder and Biden and Pelosi and Kerry and a whole bunch of other supposed Catholics are as well…
    Cardinal George was pathetically weak when it came to this and Cupich is even worse….They can give all of the Pro Life talks they want, but THAT is all most of the leaders ever do in this church, is TALK….I RARELY see any Admonishing the Sinner in this Church, RARELY do I ever see someone publically confronted for their support of evil….Another violation of clear cut Scripture as 1 Timothy 5:20 states that these individuals should be rebuked in front of others…

  • John Willson

    A colleague had a bumper sticker, “Another Democrat for Life.” I asked her, “Where’s the other one?” She laughed, sadly. She is a Mass-going Catholic and doesn’t feel very good about the compromises she has to make. We live in sad times.

    • Diane

      She needs to become informed to the realization that the Democrat Party stands for nothing good. Nothing, nothing they vote for or want is good for America. From Health Care, taxes the poor, especially abortion. They do nothing but make the poor, poorer and make everyone dependent on the Government, which is us, the tax payers. Socialist and Communistic. No Catholic should ever vote for a Democrat. They are pure evil. Hillary said the Churches must change its teachings on abortion and gay marriage. Who made her in charge of Christianity?

  • FreemenRtrue

    What is the point of this article? The Demoncrats are full bore for government funded abortion.Stupak committed one of the most heinous errors ever, and he was in denial even while he was doing it. The last time I saw him in the news he was sticking to his horrible decision. The DemoncRat party wants to remove even the mention of God from its platform. How can anyone who calls themselves Catholic vote for the baby killers? Why is the abortion rate so high among Catholic women? Because our church ‘leaders’ refuse to take a clear and vociferous stand for life. It is disgraceful and a stain of Marxism that has permeated the church since VatII.

  • Bill

    I am upset with any Catholic that votes for a Democrat. Our priests, Bishops, and Pope do a terrible job of saving the lives of the unborn. Pro abortion Catholic politicians should be immediately excommunicated.

    • Joe Knippenberg

      Amen to that! How can anyone who considers him/herself a Catholic ascribe to the values of a pro-abortion party by voting for it?

  • Bobo Fett

    Great article. The mafia reference was precisely accurate.

  • givelifeachance2

    This is such a shop worn topic. Neither party is prolife which is the reason we’ve been unable to extricate abortion. They have been collaborators with each other to preserve abortion.

    The Stupak maneuver was more complex than you describe, starting 4 months before Obamacorpse was passed, when it was first introduced in Congress, and many congressmen were naturally averse to it. Stupak made an amendment that overcame that aversion by prohibiting Hyde abortions under ACA. Never minding the rape incest babies under that bus, “prolife” organizations championed stupak and his amendment which overcame the legislators natural aversion to ACA. It passed in Nov. 2009 with even USCCB lobbiers proudly crowing that they had gotten Pelosi to accept the amendment in exchange for their support of ACA.

    Thus ties in USCCB ignominious complicity in Obamacorpse. Stupak took the fall months later when ACA was inevitable, but he used USCCB shoulders to tip the first ball into the basket.

    • Mr. Graves

      The USCCB has been for decades a Democrat campaign outpost. All the same, I wouldn’t waste tears on Stupak. Used he was, by both Obama and others, but if this lay person could see the betrayal coming from miles away, frankly, a seasoned politician like BS should have, too.

      • givelifeachance2

        I am not sowing sympathy for Stupak, just making the larger point that the enemy is not just Democrats but they is US, that is, USCCB. If USCCB can’t get things straight, how can the Democrats be expected to?

        • Mr. Graves

          I’m not sure what “but they is US” means, but I’ve fallen victim to autocorrect myself many times; perhaps you did, too?

          Your latter point about how Dems can know true teaching in the absence of guidance from the bishops is: the same way anyone knows Catholic truth. It starts with loving the truth, learning it, and following it, regardless whether the bishops or your grandpa’s political party or anyone else follows. No one will stand before God — certainly no modern Dem or bishop of any age — and claim invincible ignorance of Catholic teaching.

  • Manfred

    Thank you for a fine article, Howard. I never knew of DFLA until now.
    There is no penalty of sin for not voting. Both Augustine and Aquinas held that very few people will see God. Better not to vote if the person or Party voted for will be aided or abetted in Mortal Sins by our vote. This world and its systems are chimeras:they all pass into nothingness when each of us die.

  • DebraBrunsberg

    I noted on how so many comments blamed someone other than the person themselves. The reason why many Catholics have no problem voting for pro-murder candidates is that they are Catholic in name only. One cannot have a relationship with Jesus Christ AND follow Him and then support those who support murdering His creations. It is just not possible. Unformed Catholics, yes. Ignorant of their faith Catholics, without a doubt. Followers of Christ, not so much.

  • Cheryl Jefferies

    If I remember correctly, the pro-life Democrats asked to have some kind of visible status (a booth or table or some means of making their stance known) at the DNC National Convention in Charlotte in 2012. They were denied. But, that was also the same DNC convention where God and Israel both were thrown out of the DNC platform. A phone call from Obama reversed that decision by the delegates. I suspect he was rather rudely awakened as to what would happen to the party and to him in terms of donations if that decision stood, hence, his phone call. The delegates were overruled in some fancy footwork on a voice vote and they were not happy when that happened…the entire place just about booed the rafters down when God and Israel were put back into the party platform. Then, there was the big video (more like a movie, actually) that all the delegates were cheering about, swooning over, crying tears of joy over. The title? “We All Belong to the Government.” And, the DNC an the makers of that video meant that very literally. I mention all this just in case someone was not following closely exactly what happened at that nominating convention. On the other side, however, at the Nevada GOP State meeting either last year or the year before, certain elements in the GOP in Nevada were able to out-wait most of the other delegates and, on the last day, voted to remove both the pro-life plank and the pro-marriage (real marriage, as I call it) plank from the state GOP’s platform. As far as I know, that decision has not been rescinded. That worried me from the standpoint of what might happen at other state GOP conventions and then, at the national GOP platform level. And, all this really begs the question: Do we dare “compromise” on the issue of Life itself? Have we not compromised enough on too many things, including, this issue, already? Besides, the Dems will never compromise on this on. Someone once said (and, I believe, hit the nail on the head): Abortion is the “sacrament of the Left.” The Dems in Congress even abandoned their supposed anti-sex/child trafficking stance when the GOP tied a bill about that to trying to stop abortion abroad. All else falls before abortion for the Dems/Left. And, we have to face that.

  • I hope this article is only Part 2 of 4. Next needs to be how time after time, the Republican Congress has gone soft on the Hyde Ammendment any time the budget or tax breaks for cronies is on the line.

  • grump

    Instead of pro-choice, those who favor baby killing should be referred to as anti-life. Democrats cannot differentiate between true good and true evil. Hence, they are against the death penalty (spare the guilty) and for abortion (kill the innocent). The only hope to reverse Roe v. Wade and repeal “same-sex marriage” is for the new President to appoint conservative Supreme Court judges to replace the doddering idiots that tilted America toward depravity. If Clinton, Sanders or another Democrat gets into the White House, there’s no chance this will happen.

    • Michael DeLorme

      I come to your posting after just learning of the death of Supreme Court Justice, Antonin Scalia.

      Does anyone doubt that our president will appoint the most virulently pro-abortion replacement he can find, to take over Justice Scalia’s position?

      Does anyone doubt that Mitch McConnell will rally the RINOs to support the president’s choice?

      When—barring a miracle—this happens, I fear it will matter not at all who is elected President this coming November. At least as regards abortion, we’re sunk.

  • Fr. Peter Morello, Ph.D.

    Prohibition of the unjust taking of an innocent life [abortion] is not simply a religious principle. It belongs to natural law stretching back in time to the ancient Code of Hammurabi and appears in Mosaic Law, and the Common Law of England adapted by most States following Independence, which nullifies as mute pro choice democrats et Al who charge pro lifers of imposing religious belief into politics and civil law. We have become a Nation of murderers of the innocent almost fanatically embedded into our politico judicial system by Barak Obama the most anti life president ever who as a member of the Illinois State Congress continually voted against a bill to save the lives of post natal infants who survived an abortion procedure. Barak Obama was the only dissenter. That belongs to the major legacy and insult to humanity left by this man who many, many Catholics voted for and who today as members of Congress support and defend his policy. Bishops by silence during his and other elections and those bishops who sought to prohibit priests from speaking out are moral accomplices. How can the exemption be weighed against the taking of one innocent life [the argument of my Archbishop which I openly opposed]. The irrational idea of absolute freedom in choosing candidates, the A. Kennedy syndrome, is the other morally and judicially bankrupt sin.

    • Diane

      AMEN Father!

    • Mr. Graves

      One good that comes from these discussions is that those truly committed to Catholic social teaching (as opposed to PC, generic “social justice”) are forced to declare sides in the culture war, and failure to take sides speaks volumes on its own.

  • Diane

    One cannot be Catholic and be Democrat. It doesn’t matter if there are Democrats who claim to be pro-life, the party, itself, is the party of death and destruction on every issue, whether it be on life issues, tax issues, health care issues, helping the minorities and the poor and creating jobs. It has become a socialist, communistic party and is very un-American.

  • Robert A Rowland

    MAKING
    AMERICA GREAT AGAIN

    Would you like to hear the spirit of “76” thrive again?
    Patriots no longer hear it above the Democrat din.
    The Democrat Party has made us a pagan nation.
    The nation we live in now is a cheap imitation.

    The Supreme Court no longer upholds the Constitution.
    The President now rejects the marriage institution.
    The Declaration of Independence has been denounced.
    The Republic our Founders provided has been renounced.

    The Democrat voters must bear the blame for our demise.
    Patriotic spirit of revolution must now rise.
    If the coming election can’t turn our spirit around,
    you can be certain that our nation will soon run aground.

    If we want to salvage the nation under God we knew,
    can anyone doubt what moral Americans must do?
    A renaissance of Christian principles must be our role.
    Only then will weever regain our nation’s lost soul.

    The Democrat Party has now lost its right to exist.
    Those party voters who value the nation must desist.
    A vote for Democrats is a moral rejection role.
    What terrible impact would that have on a voter’s soul?

    Bob Rowland

    II/IX/MMXVI

    • Bro_Ed

      I can visualize Kenye West doing this to a Hip-Hop beat.

  • bernie

    Only one answer is persuasive to me. We need a Pro-Life Caucus of Registered Voters (PLC) that rises above political party and all other issues. A single issue voter list? – Yes! The Net makes it possible to implement at every level of political, social, perhaps even corporate, life. To every position of authority we could then ask: “You want our vote? Commit yourself to ending abortion.”

  • Bro_Ed

    I think you use too wide a brush. I registered as a Democrat in 1960 and voted for JFK in my first presidential election. I am Pro-Life because I consider myself an Independent and Pro-Life is my belief. I will go from party to party and support the person I feel is most qualified for the job. I go out of my way to avoid both the Looney Left and the Rigid Right. Perhaps you should just talk issues and not political parties.

    • Howard Kainz

      The policies of the Democratic Party regarding abortion began to change dramatically after a meeting of the Kennedys and the Shrivers with Catholic priests and theologians for two days in Hyannisport in 1964, when they got a green light on defending the right to abortion.

      • Fr. Peter Morello, Ph.D.

        It is interesting Howard that Justice Antonin Scalia long known as strongly anti abortion and did all he could to limit it allegedly said I believe in interview regarding overturning Roe that it would be contrary to the view of the framers of the Constitution who believed in the right for a nation to rule itself. As an Originalist he may have been been right however that brings into question whether the framers had abortion in mind since the Common Law of England based on Ecclesiastic tradition and canons stemming back to union with Rome and Royal statutes Star Court precedent would provide an opposing Originalist interpretation.

        • Mike Feehan

          Can you please explain to me WHY so few Pro abortion politicians are EXCOMMUNICATED from this church??? Seriously, why do many of the leaders seem so afraid to take a STAND FOR CHRIST??? You have Biden, Pelosi, Durbin, Kerry, etc, etc and RARELY DO I EVER see a Catholic bishop take a real stand for CHRIST….They should at the very least be EXCOMMUNICATED…In reality, if you look at 1 Corinthians 5:11-13 and Matthew 18:15-17, they should be kicked out of the church for their years on end REFUSAL to repent of their support of grave evil…We are all sinners, but the difference is that there usually a sign of repentance, of a changing of the actions of the sinner…WHATEVER happened to ADMONISHING THE SINNER in this Church as I rarely see it???

          • Fr. Peter Morello, Ph.D.

            Ambivalence of complete commitment to Christ and accommodation to the world.

          • Mike Feehan

            Thank you for your response….You do agree with me then that these bishops could and should be doing much more???
            God bless you for your orthodoxy and courage.

          • Sheila

            I believe you already know the answer. And I totally understand your need and relief at having Father’s support. Blessings and prayers for Father!

          • Sheila

            Yes, yes Father. God bless you for being here and tending us flock!!

          • Sheila

            I agree with you 100%. Let it be known that I was excommunicated while I was out of the church for being ordained a female minister. I was not aware of this until I came back into the Church. And over the last 20 years I have seen various levels of clergy openly allowing politicians and other catholics to continue in the abortion mentality, as well as the practice of other mortal and grave sin. Souls are being led to hell. It takes moral fiber and will (which most of us do not fully have) to courageously stand up and win spiritual battles of this kind. Then a living saint comes along. The past is full of examples. Let’s pray for saints to rise up and stand for Truth and Life! We have a choice in this next election. We will answer to God for this tragedy of death. No excuses. Stop playing games and VOTE 100% for Life.

          • Mike Feehan

            Shiela, I met Archbishop Cupich last year in March, THREE MONTHS after he went on Face the Nation and said that he would have no problem giving communion out to Pro Child Murder politicians….I asked him, what was the logic behind his statement as it sure has not worked well in the past with the likes of Teddy Kennedy, Biden, Pelosi, etc, etc…I kid you not, but he told me that Dick Durbin never had an abortion….I said, you are right, but he supports abortions and that is a grave sin…Shiela, he then said, No, I need to take it up with the Supreme Court as they are the ones to take it up with, that Durbin never had an abortion….Shiela, THIS is why I don’t take too many of them seriously…Oh sure, they can give some Pro Life TALK, but when the rubber hits the road and an actual Joe Biden or Nancy Pelosi or John Kerry is involved and they may face some secular persecution for taking a stand for Christ, they are pretty much nowhere to be found.

          • Robert A Rowland

            Excommunication is automatic.

          • Mike Feehan

            Yes, but they are STILL committing scandal by their actions and are public figures. therefore they need to be PUBLICALLY EXCOMMUNICATED….Why are most leaders in this church afraid to do this, to take a STAND FOR CHRIST??? I live near Chicago and Cardinal George sat there for 17 years and tolerated this garbage and now Cupich is doing the same…I’m not talking about some private “talk” either as even if they did meet, it sure the heck did not stop the likes of Durbin, the Madigans, the Daleys, Quinn, Cullerton from continuing to attend Mass and receive Communion…

            Heck, 1 Timothy 5:20 says the following:

            1 Timothy 5:20New American Standard Bible (NASB)

            20 Those who continue in sin, rebuke in the presence of all, so that the rest also will be fearful of sinning.

            ****WHEN was the last time you saw a Cardinal Goerge, Archbishop Dolan, Cupich, Wuerl take a REAL STAND FOR CHRIST by rebuke in the presence of others??? You haven’t and neither have I, direct disobedience to God’s Word….Whatever happened to ADMONISHING THE SINNER in this church????
            ‘tt

          • Mike Feehan

            On top of that, Cupich came out last year and said that he had NO PROBLEM giving Communion out to Pro abortion politicians….Sure doesn’t like they have EXCOMMUNICATED to me….

  • As a Canadian I can’t offer you any hope because outlawing abortion isn’t even on the radar with our new government. Is there one Republican candidate running for President in 2016 who has stated publicly that he would rescind the abortion laws in your country? Do you believe Donald Trump would do that? If in fact it happened and abortions became illegal do you think it would stop women from having an abortion in your country? Would it reduce the numbers by 20%, 50%, 75%? Or is it too late to think of punishing women and their doctors?

    • Howard Kainz

      I wouldn’t expect Donald Trump to make moves in that direction. Abortion does not seem to be a major issue on his agenda.

    • Trump is nearly as pro-choice as the Democrats. Only a personhood amendment and paying women for pregnancy will reverse the trend.

      • Michael Paterson-Seymour

        I would not put much faith in a personhood amendment.

        French law explicitly recognises the personhood of the unborn. Art 16 of the Code Civil declares, “Legislation ensures the primacy of the person [la personne], prohibits any infringement of the latter’s dignity and guarantees respect for the human being [l’être humain] from the outset of life.” All jurists agree that “person” and “human being” are here synonymous.

        This principle is actually repeated in Art 1 of the Veil Law (Loi n° 75-17 du 17 janvier 1975, concerning the Voluntary Termination of Pregnancy), “The law guarantees respect for every human being from the outset of life. There shall be no derogation from this principle EXCEPT in cases of necessity and under the conditions laid down by this Law.”

        Despite this rhetorical flourish, the Veil Law allows an abortion to be performed
        before the end of the tenth week of pregnancy by a physician in an approved
        hospital when a woman who is “in a situation of distress” because of her pregnancy requests the abortion. If two physicians certify, after an examination, that the pregnancy poses a grave danger to the woman’s health or if a strong probability exists that the expected child will suffer from a particularly severe illness recognized as incurable, an abortion may be performed at any time.

        • Contrast this withe the current Planned Parenthood v Casey ruling, which does not even need a medical reason for elective abortion st any time during the pregnsncy.

  • Dave

    “The DFLA approach is geared to compromise” — but there is no such thing as a little dead. Michael Walsh, in The Devil’s Pleasure Palace, has an apt but rough analogy that works. I won’t repeat it, because I think people should read the book. But here’s the point: once an incorrupt substance has contact with a corrupt substance, the new substance isn’t an admixture of the best qualities of both: it is corrupt. Yes, the elites of both Parties support the sacrament of death. But one Party does so openly, gleefully, joyfully — maliciously. I do not see how a Catholic could ever support that Party, though it has many putative Catholics in its ranks; and I can tell you from personal experience, they don’t compromise much. They hoist their opponents on their opponents’ principles, when they fail to live up to them, but as for themselves, they don’t have principles, only objectives, and so anything goes, including deception. They want what they want, and they want to destroy whatever or whoever stands between them and what they want. The coldness is unbelievable.

    As to the excommunication of women receiving abortions, this matter received a lot of attention earlier this year, from Ed Peters and others. The import is that the woman who receives the abortion is not necessarily excommunicated: the people performing it are, if they are Catholics. The larger point is that the issue of the excommunication of women receiving abortions is a lot more nuanced than the popular imagination would have it. One should consult the canon lawyers’ blogs for discussion on the point.

    And conservatives should support outreach to the poor and marginalized, whether through governmental action or through voluntary agencies, so that a poor woman (however poverty be defined) need not consider aborting her child. A lot of pro-life Catholics are involved in this work; many more need to be.

    • I will believe we have a pro-life Republican Party and a pro-life Democratic Party the day we negotiate a tradeoff of fully funding WIC in return for a Personhood Amendment

  • Michael DeLorme

    “…this claim to be “pro-life” does not necessarily imply complete opposition to abortion”

    I’m glad to learn of the DFLA. My own experience of pro-life Catholics who are also Democrats is that they tend to be proponents of the so-called “seamless garment” theory, by which it is claimed that one must be just as much against, say, the death penalty as against abortion; or that one must also support any government program(s) that purport to be for the needy.

    Abortion doesn’t really seem to bother them so much. In fact they actually seem embarrassed by vocal opponents of abortion in their midst, and are quick to accuse them of “not caring about what happens to children after they’re born.”

    [Let me be quick to say that that was much more the case, back in New York, than here in Alaska.]

    The “seamless garment” provides cover enabling them to claim they are “pro-life.”

    • Gentillylace

      I am a registered Democrat (although I have voted blank ballots — except for ballot initiatives — since 2010). I am also consistently pro-life: I oppose abortion, the death penalty, war and physician-assisted death. I also favor government programs that purport to be for the needy (I am on SSI and it would be silly of me to oppose it or believe that it should be reduced!). But I do not believe that people *must* be against the death penalty as much as abortion — I know that abortion takes a higher priority because the lives taken in abortion are innocent — nor do I believe that people *must* support government programs that purport to be for the needy (though I would prefer that voters support those programs — people can disagree about such matters in good conscience). I do worry about what happens to children after they are born, but Feminists for Life has very good recommendations in such circumstances. I am in favor of both Democrats for Life and Feminists for Life, even though I think that they are swimming against the stream.

      Why do I not vote for Republican candidates and prefer to cast blank ballots? The GOP’s stances on economics and foreign policy are abhorrent to me. I keep thinking if Bernie Sanders were 10 years younger and pro-life, I would vote for him in the Democratic presidential primary — but as it is, voting for him would not be appropriate. It is a shame that the apparatus of the Democratic Party is so much against pro-life stances in potential officeholders (at least here in California). It would help if a major political party that is socially conservative and fiscally leftist were to take root in the US, but that seems to be a pipe dream.

      • AKA_brotherfox

        Thank you. You and I seem to be in pretty much the same boat. As for this reference by Mr. Kainz to — “stereotypes of Republicans as opposed to civil rights and solidarity with the poor, in spite of contrary evidence from history” — I’d love to see any contrary evidence from recent history (harking back to Abraham Lincoln is too much of an historical stretch). No honest person can reasonably suggest that the Republican Party has been anywhere close to the Democrats in supporting social policies that benefit the poor and the middle class. You and I, and Americans like us, are disenfranchised, and we continually find ourselves between a rock and a hard place at election time.

  • Kathy

    A couple with whom we are friends just changed their party affiliation. They viewed the undercover films by the Center for Medical Progress and could not stomach being Democrat any longer. They watched the congressional vote and saw all but ONE Democrat vote against the defunding of Planned Parenthood, an organization which rises to the status of Nazi Germany in its lack of humanity. Our friends were appalled to learn that all of those Democrats who voted against defunding were the recipients of major donations from Planned Parenthood. I am sorry to disagree, but I cannot fathom being pro life AND a Democrat. And I will never buy the propaganda that one can be a Catholic AND pro ‘choice’ What ever happened to the truth? It’s time to pick a side – enough of the straddling the fence and saying what we think might win points.

  • Michael DeLorme

    Redeeming flaws…

  • Quo Vadis

    Every time I read about Rep. Bart Stupak, I remember what a fool him and his fellow congressmen were to accept and believe that fact of Obama’s executive order. He deserves the blame as much as anyone else for Obamacare for voting for that abortion.

  • anantwort

    I believe that a Catholic belonging to the Democrat Party is like a German being a NAZI “for the good of the country”.



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