Another Catholic Law Prof Endorses Barack Obama Despite Pro-Abortion View

National   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Sep 30, 2008   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Another Catholic Law Prof Endorses Barack Obama Despite Pro-Abortion View

by Steven Ertelt Editor
September 30
, 2008

Washington, DC ( — Another Catholic law professor has endorsed Barack Obama despite the fact the presidential candidate has a solid pro-abortion view. Duquesne University School of Law dean Nicholas Cafardi will likely earn the same rebuke from pro-life Catholics as has Douglas Kmiec.

In an editorial appearing in the National Catholic Reporter, Cafardi contends he believes abortion is an "unspeakable evil" yet he supports Obama, who has pledged to keep abortion legal another 35 years.

"Despite what some Republicans would like Catholics to believe, the list of what the church calls ‘intrinsically evil acts’ does not begin and end with abortion," Cafardi writes," he writes. "In fact, there are many intrinsically evil acts, and a committed Catholic must consider all of them in deciding how to vote."

Cafardi bases his decision on two factors.

First, he claims that the pro-life movement has "permanently" lost the abortion battle — even though most pro-life advocates note the Supreme Court could be one vote away from overturning Roe v. Wade.

Even if the high court reverses the decision that allowed virtually unlimited abortions throughout pregnancy, Cafardi contends that isn’t a victory. That unborn children will at least be protected in some states isn’t good news for the supposed pro-life advocate.

Ignoring studies clearly showing pro-life laws lead to substantial reductions in abortion, he claims the "number of abortions would remain unchanged" in a post-Roe United States.

Cafardi also claims Obama is not actually pro-abortion, even though he wants 50 million more abortions and has promised to sign legislation that would overturn every pro-life law across the country and cause 125,000 more abortions a year.

Karen Cross, the political director for National Right to Life, points to a speech Obama made before Planned Parenthood in 2007 promising to sign the so-called Freedom of Choice Act that would make the Roe decision federal law.

Not only would the bill make legal abortions in all nine months of pregnancy the law of the land, it would overturn every pro-life state enacted by state legislatures. That means states across the nation could no long place even moderate, common sense limits on abortions like parental notification, banning partial-birth abortions or preventing taxpayer-funding of abortions.

Eliminating those laws would obviously increase the number of abortions — hardly consistent with Cafardi’s claims.

The second factor for Cafardi are other issues unrelated to abortion.

He cites the "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship" document the nation’s Catholic bishops released and claims it says voters can use abortion, euthanasia, embryonic stem-cell research, torture, racism, and war as issues on which to base a vote. He contends that Obama is better on the totality of those issues.

But other Catholics say that takes the document out of context.

"Weighing the spectrum of issues is not the decisive factor, and any fair reading of ‘Forming Consciences’ leads directly to the conclusion that the bishops did not publish section 34 as a loophole for Catholics to support pro-abortion politicians like Obama," writer Deal Hudson has written.

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