Archive for the ‘Elections’ Category

A Time to Begin Anew

Tuesday, January 17th, 2012

The New Year gives us the chance to look beyond the mistakes and sins of the past, and the opportunity to do even more good in the future.

This year provides us an opportunity to advance the pro-life cause since we will elect a President and many other leaders. It is critical that from this day forward we devote all the energy we can to making Election Day a day when more pro-life men and women than ever become our elected leaders! While politics should never be seen as our salvation, it is nevertheless an essential element of our progress that public servants work to restore protection to the unborn.

Visit priestsforlife.org to learn how you can help! Happy New Year!

Please take a moment to check out my Birthday Wish on behalf of the cause Pray to End Abortion.

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Using Election Law to Expose Abortion

Monday, January 16th, 2012

Longtime pro-life activist Randall Terry is running for President. He is running as a Democrat against President Obama in the primaries.

No, he does not expect to win the primary, but neither is that his motive for running. Whatever one thinks of the man himself or his history, what he is doing in this election deserves some attention from every pro-life person humble enough to realize that there is something to be learned from everyone else.

Many organizations — including my own — have produced pro-life ads for television and have had some success in running them. Two major issues arise. One, of course, is money. The other is censorship. Many times have we and others been told by television outlets (and print and radio, for that matter) that, although we had the money to buy the ad time, they did not want to air something against abortion, because it would be too upsetting and controversial for their audiences.

I have been told this regarding ads that do not show anything graphic, but simply talk about abortion, and in some cases, show a beautiful, living child.

But there is a way to bypass the censorship: run in a political race, and create ads under the auspices of your election campaign. Randall Terry is currently a federal candidate. By virtue of that fact, he has the law on his side, permitting him to run ads that are both controversial and graphic. The Federal Communications Commission requires stations it has licensed to run the ads of federal candidates within 45 days of a state’s primary election or caucus. He is ready to run ads in 17 states and 40 markets including Minneapolis, St. Louis, Denver, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Honolulu and Salt Lake City.

And it’s not just about Randall Terry. There are four candidates for the House of Representatives who are using the same approach: Missy Smith, Angela Michael, David Lewis, and Gary Boisclair. They are utilizing election-related law to communicate a message to large segments of the public, a message which under just about every other circumstance would be censored without recourse.

The ads show the American public what an aborted child looks like. As I have always said, America will not reject abortion until America sees abortion. What pro-lifers have in mind when they say the word “abortion” bears little or no resemblance to what many have in mind when they hear the word. We know abortion is dismemberment of a living human child; others think of nothing but “freedom, choice, and women’s rights” — important ideas and realities, indeed, but which do nothing to help one understand what an abortion actually is.

And if people debating abortion cannot even agree on what abortion is, much less whether it is right, then the debate cannot even begin.

Once again, this is not about Randall Terry, nor about endorsing him. It is, rather, about encouraging more pro-life people to run for office, and use the law to their advantage to expose the reality of abortion.

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My Statement to Pro-Choice Politicians: Clean Up Your Act

Monday, September 19th, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC – Father Pavone today urged voters to put the life issue first when evaluating candidates for election.

“When I preach – and help other priests to preach – the clear message that candidates and parties must defend life, some – including clergy – complain to me that my message hurts their favorite candidate or party. My response? ‘Go tell your favorite candidate or party to get the babies’ blood off their hands and clean up their act regarding defending life. Then my words won’t hurt them anymore.’ ”

Father Pavone pointed out that the positions of political parties also are important for voters to understand. Throughout the election season, voters can find information relevant to the elections at politicalresponsibility.com.

Voters who aren’t sure the life issue is the most important issue for a candidate should consider a candidate’s position on terrorism.

“What if a candidate supported terrorism,” Father Pavone asked. “Would citizens say, ‘Well, I disagree with you on terrorism, but what’s your health care plan? Maybe we can work together on some social programs. After all, terrorism isn’t the only issue.

“The heart of what is ‘social’ is that it respects the other person – and that means allowing them the right to life.”

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Political Parties and Skull Cracking

Monday, September 19th, 2011

Whether it’s an election year or not, I see to it that Priests for Life echoes loud and clear the duty of citizens to inform themselves about where the candidates stand on the issues. This evaluation starts, of course, with where they stand on violence against human beings, because if public servants cannot tell the difference between serving the public and killing the public, they don’t belong in public office.

What if a candidate supported terrorism? Would citizens say, “Well, I disagree with you on terrorism, but what’s your health care plan? Maybe we can work together on some social programs. After all, terrorism isn’t the only issue.”

The parallel, of course, is abortion. “Typically, the skull is brought out in fragments rather than as a unified piece” (Baby-killer Martin Haskell, in 1999 Court testimony in Wisconsin, regarding legal abortion). How can anyone make the case that this skull-cracking, which is still legal, is less violent than terrorism? How can anyone make the case that we can tolerate it while we work with the candidate on “social” programs? The heart of what is “social” is that it respects the other person – and that means not cracking their skull. We fight terrorism, and rightly so, but when we allow abortion at the same time, the evil we fight becomes merely a reflection of the evil we do.

And it’s not only the position of the candidates that matters. It’s also the position of the political party to which the candidate belongs. Elections bring not only candidates, but parties into power. How can the position of those parties on key issues not matter as we evaluate whom we will support?

Many will support a particular party because it’s a family tradition (or a Church tradition?), or because they are in bed with leaders in that party who support their social programs in exchange for their silence on baby-killing. That’s often the reason for the perplexing spinelessness often observed among Church leaders on the abortion issue.

In an interview conducted by Gianni Cardinale and published in October of 2008, now Cardinal Raymond Burke observed, “At this point, the Democratic Party risks transforming itself definitively into a ‘party of death’ due to its choices on bioethical issues.”

Not only is this an accurate observation, but it’s perfectly legitimate to say, even in Church. I know, because Priests for Life passed IRS scrutiny on these points. After all, it is a spiritual work of mercy to “instruct the ignorant.” That’s why at Priests for Life we have information both about candidates and political parties, and how to evaluate them. See priestsforlife.org/candidates.

When I preach – and help other priests to preach – the clear message that candidates and parties must defend life, some – including clergy – complain to me that my message hurts their favorite candidate or party. My response? “Go tell your favorite candidate or party to get the babies’ blood off their hands and clean up their act regarding defending life. Then my words won’t hurt them anymore.”

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Fr. Frank Announces Further Initiatives of Vote Pro-life Coalition

Monday, September 12th, 2011

Fr. Pavone has indicated that the Vote Pro-life Coalition, called together by Priests for Life and consisting of over three dozen national groups, has designated “Voter Registration Sundays” for 2012. The Coalition asks organizations, parishes and dioceses to begin learning how to conduct a non-partisan voter registration drive, and to begin planning now to give their people the urgent invitation and opportunity to register to vote. The dates of the Voter Registration Sundays are May 27 (Pentecost, when we rejoice in the power of the Holy Spirit to send us forth to renew the earth), July 1 (Sunday closest to Independence Day), and September 9, 2012 (Sunday closest to Patriot Day).

“The elections of 2012 will be crucial to restoring protection to the unborn, and every day between now and November 6, 2012 my colleagues and I will do all in our power to see to it that the elections advance the cause of life,” Fr. Pavone said. “One of the most important things our coalition groups are doing now is to urge their members to pay attention to the candidate debates and get to know those who are presenting themselves for the highest office in our land.”

Among the groups in the Coalition are: American Values, Americans United for Life Action, Anglicans for Life, Ave Maria School of Law, California Civil Rights Foundation, CatholicVote.org, CEC For Life, Citizens for a Pro-life Society, Christian Coalition of America, Coming Home, Crossroads Pro-Life, Democrats for Life, Expectant Mother Care, Faith and Action, Faithful Catholic Citizens, Good Counsel Homes, Gospel of Life Ministries, The Heidi Group, Heartbeat International, Human Life Alliance, The Justice Foundation, Life Advocacy Resource Project, Life Coalition International, Life Issues Institute, LifeNews, Life Site News, National Clergy Council, National Institute of Family and Life Advocates (NIFLA), National Life Center, National Pro-life Religious Council, One More Soul, Operation Outcry, Operation Rescue, Priests for Life, Pro-Life Action League, Rachel’s Vineyard, Susan B. Anthony List, Wallbuilders.

For more information on the coalition, visit VoteProLifeCoalition.com, and for election-related information and activities, visit PoliticalResponsibility.com.

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Getting to Know the Candidates is Essential

Thursday, August 18th, 2011

In the various debates which have been held so far between Presidential candidates, the issue of abortion has come up. It has been discussed in terms of legislation that the candidate has signed or would sign, nominees which would be selected for the courts, the role of the states in relation to the Federal government, and whether there are any exceptions under which babies should be protected.

Now is the time to pay attention to these debates, and to what the candidates say about abortion and the other issues. Getting to know the candidates is essential if we are to carry out our duty to be informed and active voters. At priestsforlife.org, we will keep you informed of these and other developments as Election Season 2012 continues to unfold.

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Announcing the Vote Pro-Life Coalition

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

Priests for Life has once again launched the Vote Pro-Life Coalition, by which dozens of national pro-life organizations will work together to have an impact on the elections of 2012. The record number of pro-life laws which have been passed on the state level in the past year shows the impact that elections can have. Moreover, the makeup of the Supreme Court, and the fact that in the next few years it can shift either toward or away from pro-life positions, highlights the importance of federal elections.

All together, we must work to advance the Culture of Life in the voting booth. Let’s pray, be informed, register voters, distribute information about the candidates, show others the importance of pro-life voting, and get many others to the polls.

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Election Season is Approaching

Wednesday, April 13th, 2011

We are at the start of the Presidential election cycle. Various candidates have begun to declare their intentions to form exploratory committees, to assess whether they have the resources and support to run for President. Various organizations are evaluating which potential candidates their members support. Various events are being planned in which those who want to run can begin debating each other.

On Election Day, many people complain that they don’t like any of the choices. That’s why it is good that these races begin early. Now is the time to encourage the best possible candidates to get into the race, rather than to say it’s too early and then complain later. And the Church indicates that the candidate’s readiness to serve the human person above all else, is the first thing we should look at.

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Pro-life leader Blasts Continued Funding of Planned Parenthood

Friday, March 18th, 2011

STATEN ISLAND, NY — Father Frank Pavone, national director of Priests for Life, responded to Sen. Harry Reid’s insistence that any agreement on funding the government will include funding of Planned Parenthood.

“If that’s the case,” Father Pavone said, “then shut it down. When a government funds massive child-killing, it has betrayed its very purpose anyway. Maybe a shutdown will give our government officials a chance to reflect on what government should be doing in the first place – serving life, not helping to destroy it.

“Priests for Life will make sure that churches across America receive the voting records of the members of Congress on any votes that affect the funding of Planned Parenthood, and inform their congregations in next year’s election cycle. We need public servants who can tell the difference between serving the public and killing the public,” Father Pavone concluded.

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The Dumbest Column I Have Ever Read

Monday, November 8th, 2010

Just prior to the recent election in the United States, Cardinal-elect Raymond Burke repeated in an interview a position which is not only consistent with longstanding Catholic teaching, but which expresses a common sense response to the murder of 50 million children in the United States alone since Roe vs. Wade. He said we cannot vote for those who would allow this massacre to continue.

I recently read a column which actually tried to portray Cardinal-elect Burke’s statement as being at odds with the Magisterium.

The author started the article by describing the statement as a “command … that Catholics vote Tea-publican in 2010.”

First of all, if the political parties in America had swapped their positions on abortion, not a word of the message of Cardinal-elect Burke would have changed. The reason is that he is not talking about one or another party; he is talking about every party. He is not advocating for one or another candidate; he is articulating a standard for every candidate. He is not seeking to influence one particular election; he is teaching the principles that guide every election.

The author of the column I read quotes the Second Vatican Council’s statement that “The Church and the political community in their own fields are autonomous and independent from each other.” He then apparently cannot recognize it when the Church exercises her role in her particular autonomous and independent field, namely, to speak the moral truth, regardless of whether it helps or hurts – or appears to endorse or oppose – any particular candidate or party.

Yet there is one mistake the author makes that is even worse. He thinks abortion is a “disappearing” issue and has “a vanishing political future.” Did he miss the debate over abortion in health care? Or perhaps he missed the statistics released after the election (by The Polling Company) indicating that 27 percent of voters said abortion funding in the health care law affected their vote and they voted for candidates who opposed the health care law while just 4 percent said abortion funding in the health care law affected their vote and they voted for candidates who favored the law.

The polling also indicates that thirty percent of all voters said that abortion “affected” their vote with 22% of all voters backing pro-life candidates and only eight percent saying they supported pro-abortion candidates – giving pro-life candidates a net pro-life advantage of 14 percent among all voters. Examined another way, of the Americans who voted based on the issue of abortion, 73 percent picked pro-life candidates while just 27 percent supported abortion advocates.

It’s hardly accurate to portray abortion as a “vanishing” issue.

And one more point. We have to stop abusing theology to rationalize our lack of courage to end abortion. Abortion is ripping the arms and legs off of babies and crushing their heads. The abortionists themselves call it “dismemberment” and “decapitation.” There can be no neutrality here, and to imply that Church documents say any different is simply an insult to the Church.

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