by Steven Ertelt
October 2, 2006
Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) — Catholic pro-life groups are condemning what they call a phony voter guide put out by a Catholic organization with ties to abortion advocates. They say the guide from Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good (CACG) incorrectly suggests that support for pro-abortion politicians can be justified.
Joseph Cella, the president of Fidelis, a national Catholic-based advocacy group, told LifeNews.com that CACG is headed by Alexia Kelley, a former advisor to the John Kerry presidential campaign.
Kerry, a pro-abortion Massachusetts senator, lost to pro-life President George W. Bush in the 2004 elections.
"Following the 2004 elections, pro-abortion politicians recognized their vulnerability with Catholic voters and have been searching for ways to shrewdly package a convincing arguments that would appeal to morally conscious voters," Cella says about the mindset behind the voter’s guide.
The CACG booklet argues “we often must vote for candidates who hold the ‘wrong’ Catholic positions on some issues in order to maximize the good our vote achieves in other areas.”
But the nation’s Catholic bishops disagree, Cella explains, saying they made it clear that candidates who are wrong on abortion but hold Catholic views on other political issues don’t deserve the votes of faithful Catholics.
In their 1998 document entitled Living the Gospel of Life: A Challenge to American Catholics, the United States Catholic Bishops said, “Being ‘right’ in such matters can never excuse a wrong choice regarding direct attacks on innocent human life."
"Indeed, the failure to protect and defend life in its most vulnerable stages renders suspect any claims to the ‘rightness’ of positions in other matters affecting the poorest and least powerful of the human community," the Catholic leaders wrote.
Larry Cirignano, director of Catholic Citizenship said, "Catholic teaching is very clear" that abortion "is never morally justifiable."
"These issues are not up for debate amongst Catholics and can never be put on equal moral grounds as poverty, immigration, the environment and other social issues where there is room for genuine debate to take place amongst faithful Catholics," he added.
Cella said he would welcome a change of heart by pro-abortion politicians who sincerely want to work on issues concerning the common good, but said until they renounce their support for the killing of innocent pre-born children, these politicians a long way to go before winning any meaningful support from pro-life Catholics.
“This voter guide is a vain attempt to whitewash the acceptance of abortion among some politicians, by appealing to socially conservative voters who may support many of their other policy objectives," Cella said.
"Pro-abortion politicians will have a very difficult time recapturing the support of Catholics until they abandon this irreconcilable position," he added.