Andrew Cuomo Cites Pope Francis for Political Gain as He Pushes Bill for Abortions Up to Birth

State   |   Micaiah Bilger   |   Jan 17, 2019   |   1:33PM   |   Albany, New York

New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo is exploiting his Catholic faith for political gain as he pushes a radical pro-abortion bill on state residents, a Catholic leader said this week.

Bill Donohue, president of the Catholic League, criticized the pro-abortion governor for claiming to be Catholic but continuously fighting against the church’s teachings on abortion and other issues.

On Tuesday, Cuomo touted his Catholic faith during his State of the State and Budget Address. He told voters that he served as an altar boy when he was young, and his religion continues to be important to him.

But that is not evident in the governor’s actions. Donohue said Cuomo misrepresent Pope Francis and the Catholic Church’s position on the Child Victims Act, state legislation to protect victims of sexual abuse.

“In doing so, he seriously misrepresented what the pope said. Indeed, he exploited the pope to serve his own political interests,” Donohue said.

He continued:

Cuomo began his statement on this issue by rolling out his Catholic credentials. He was an altar boy, he said, and his religion is important to him. But it is obviously not that important: if it were, he would not have taken the occasion to inform the audience of his disagreements with the Catholic Church.

The New York Governor said it has been “painful” for him to differ with the Church’s teachings on marriage and abortion. Unlike the Catholic Church, Cuomo supports the right of two men to marry; he also believes that the unborn child should have no rights.

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Worse was Cuomo’s total misrepresentation of what the pope said. Here is the quote that Cuomo cited. (Initially, he did not attribute the quote to the pope, saying only that these were the words of a “wise man.”)

“The abuse of minors is an offense so brutal. The Church cannot remain indifferent to this, and the Church must punish such priests, and that includes support for legal action. There is no other way out of this, because it’s a crime. No, worse! It’s leaving them alive, but destroyed.”

Immediately following Cuomo’s recitation of these remarks, he told the audience that these were the pope’s words. “We stand with Pope Francis and we [must] pass the Child Victims Act this year, because if you believe in justice for all, then you believe in passing the Child Victims Act and follow the leadership of Pope Francis.” A huge photo of the pope was shown on a screen at this point, allowing Cuomo to further exploit the Holy Father.

Cuomo stands with the pope? Not on cohabitation. Not on marriage. Not on abortion.

Cuomo certainly does not stand with the Catholic Church on abortion. Right now, Cuomo is pushing a bill that will allow unborn babies to be aborted for basically any reason up to birth in New York. Late-term abortions, which currently are illegal in New York, would be allowed, and non doctors would be allowed to perform them. Cuomo has threatened to hold up the budget until the legislature passes the bill.

“Cuomo’s Catholicity is his business, but it is our business to call him out when he hijacks Catholicism to buttress his agenda,” he said.