Pro-Life & Pro-War?

January 2007

Fr. Frank Pavone, prior to the midterm elections in November 2006, issued a voter's guide called "Ten Easy Steps to...Voting With a Clear Conscience." He says it is "non-partisan."

Fr. Pavone is a great prolife leader, and he says: "Any candidate who says abortion should be kept legal disqualifies him/herself from public service.... Support for abortion is enough for us to decide not to vote for such a person." But then he makes an about-face: "What happens if two opposing candidates both support abortion?... Then just ask a simple question: Which of the two candidates will do less harm to unborn children if elected?" He says: "This is not ‘choosing the lesser of two evils.' We may never choose evil. would not be choosing evil. Why? Because in choosing to limit an evil, you are choosing a good." Who knows what that means?

Then he says: "Sometimes people vote according to the party of the candidate, perhaps because that's a family tradition.... But when is the last time you read the words of the platform of that party?" We all know he is referring to the Democratic Party, which is pro-abortion.

Section seven is titled: "Remember, the Party Matters." We will quote the whole section:
Voting with a clear conscience also means that you consider how the outcome of the election in which you vote affects the balance of power. In other words, elections do not only put individual candidates into power; they put political parties into power. And it is not only the candidates who have positions. So do the parties.

The same questions, then, that you ask about the candidates' positions on fundamental issues have to be asked of the party. What is the platform of that party? Is it possible that the balance of power [from Republicans who now control Congress to the Democrats] might shift as a result of the outcome of this particular race? Keep in mind that the party that is in power controls the committees responsible for initiating legislation. A pro-abortion party will not normally allow pro-life legislation to come forward, no matter how pro-life the individual lawmakers may be. Do not just look at whether the candidate is pro-life. Consider whether or not, if he or she wins, the pro-abortion party will come into power.
Repeating: "Do not just look at whether the candidate is pro-life. Consider whether or not, if he or she wins, the pro-abortion party will come into power." But what about Pavone's statement that "Any candidate who says abortion should be kept legal disqualifies him/herself from public service.... Support for abortion is enough for us to decide not to vote for such a person." It is basically negated, and you can vote for a pro-abortion candidate as long as he is a Republican.

You have two options:

  1. Online subscription: Subscribe now to New Oxford Review for access to all web content at AND the monthly print edition for as low as $38 per year.
  2. Single article purchase: Purchase this article for $1.95, for viewing and printing for 48 hours.

If you're already a subscriber log-in here.

New Oxford Notes: January 2007

Read our posting policy Add a comment
The section entitled "Remember, the Party Matters" really goes overboard, especially when you consider that prominent Republicans such as Arlen Specter and Rudy Giuliani are so strongly pro-abortion. Posted by: Fr_Richard
January 03, 2007 09:52 PM EST
How do we kill? Let us count the ways: In the US ALONE with abortion: 4,000/day or 1.3 million/year over the last 30 years, which equals 45,000,000 people (if you count babies as people). War in IRAQ: 3,000 US and tens of thousands of the people of Iraq (all who's lives were also precious!) over the past 4 years. The innocent babies didn't sign up for this like the US soldiers did, and many of the people in Iraq had some choices they could make that could have saved them. The babies do not have any choices...and the killing of the innocent babes is unrelenting. Hmmmmm. 45 million so far and still going at that pace < tens of thousands which will end at some point soon. When I consider and balance the hierarchy of evil here, Father Frank Pavone makes a lot of sense to me. Sorry to disagree this time...keep up the good work! Posted by: mdsmelser
January 08, 2007 08:15 PM EST
Nice moral logic there, mdsmelser. Elegant.

Btween the likes of you, Georgie Pudding Pie & Planned Parenthood, we all should be reciting the shahada in good time (check it, start memorizing now: B'ism Allah al-Rahim al-Raheem.. Muhummad Rasul Allah.. work on that, I'll spot you the rest later.)

Keep exterminating ourselves with contraceptives & abortion, while continually pissing off the Musselmen & just watch what happens. It's gonna be fun.

The only way we (our culture, country, Church) will win is if we take the moral law seriously. All of it. Including the parts we don't like. That means sex is sacred, babies are human, and so too are or ENEMIES. Read the Beatitudes you idgit. What part of them don't you understand?

We are allowed armed police and soldiers only to protect the vulnerable & innocent, not invade another country for what ammount to imperialistic (cultural, political, moral & economic) ends.

Your utilitarian moral valuations are as nauseating as Planned Parenthood's.
Posted by: chascurtis
January 09, 2007 04:52 PM EST
Father Pavone should talk to Judie Brown, president of the American Life League. She knows from bitter experience that Republican politicians throw the pro-life citizens a few crumbs here and there but have no intention of attempting to overturn Roe v. Wade.

At least Democratic politicians are honest; they support abortion any time, all the time.
Posted by: Caroline
January 09, 2007 08:33 PM EST
THis is the same guy that pushed for Bush in 2004, when Bush & Kerry were pro-choice. One candidate was 100% pro-life and ignored and written off by "pro-lifers'-Michael Anthony Peroutka of the Constitution Party. Posted by: catholicresistence
January 10, 2007 01:17 PM EST
The Republican party is the only choice if pro life is the highest of priorities. The war on terror,however, must also be high up on the list and maybe higher.

So those who believe the war on terror did not necessitate the regime change in Iraq are in quite a quandry. I err on the side of trusting government in general and Bush in particular on whether the invasion was prudent.
Posted by: BuzzWhite
January 23, 2007 08:33 AM EST
Ideally, we would not (willingly) commit any error at all. At least in cases where Church teaching is crystal clear, as it is here : the war is totally unjust. President Bush is not the pope; he is not even Catholic, and has no authority in this matter (of Catholic Church teaching). Posted by: Mike Ezzo
January 29, 2007 10:40 PM EST
I'm mad at Priests for Life right now. I have donated to them on several occasions, and they recently took the liberty of giving my email address to Sam Brownback's campaign (who I like), but they in turn gave my email to a group called GOPUSA. Now I get these wonderful emails almost daily with titles such as "Just Say No… To Iraq Resolution", "Former POW says anti-war protests are anti-American" and "Beware Of Illegal Aliens Seeking Hazmat Licenses"
I've had to argue with my liberal heterodox friends about Priests for Life being non-partisan, but now I don't have any good arguments.
Posted by: jim5150jvc
February 01, 2007 06:06 PM EST
The Cardinal Ratzinger letter written in July 2004 to then-Cardinal McCarrick spells out clearly the priority of the moral issues. It has also been stated many times that if both candidates are pro abortion (or pro life for that matter) then other aspects or issues come into play for the serious voter. HOwever, wrt the parties, there is a valid point in considering that, for the democrat party, they have consistently voted in favor of issues anti-thetical to Catholic teaching. And those candidates that claim to be pro life etc., we find them voting, nevertheless, along with the party line. The candidate in Pa that unseated Senator Santorem comes to mind - he stated that he was pro life but would support a filibuster of pro life judges recommended for the Supreme Court. So much for pro life. The current Democrat party is not the party of my parents - they have strayed far from the american party who was for the working guy. Posted by: wunsch
March 13, 2007 01:23 PM EDT
The study by the Lancet group has been thoroughly discredited. You can read of the report's demise in the left-leaning UK Times here:
Too bad you missed the bulletin. You really ought to do some fact checking before believing numbers that are so obviously inflated.
Posted by: daweeds
September 10, 2008 01:19 AM EDT
Your editor cut his teeth on a farrago of Leftist trash at Cal in the 60's where ostensibly got his PhD in politicl science. Somewhere after that he fell off his horse he regained his sight and became an autodidact and later a fons et origon of a deliciously vicious monthly which is adept at spreading the gospel all around to fatuous and froward Catholics. His knowledge of the Faith to me has always been a bit of the Heath Kit (do it yourself) type since he seems to not favor any particular school other than the gospel according to Santus Vree. Serious students of theology dismiss his work as hack journalism.
Attacking Fr Pavone should be taken with great caution. If you disparage the Catholics who have fled to the GOP due to the nauseating political correctness of the big tent Democrats you will be successful in allowing the Left to take control of the USA.
We know that Dr Vree probably hates money and finds it dirty and for that reason his loyalties seem to dovetail with the Dems.
So any attack on the proto Left dems will be met with quotes pulled out of context from various sources including the current CEO in Rome who he took the time a few years ago to ridicule the fact the His Holiness when a cardinal had enjoyed wearing certain kinds of shoes.

Dale Vree is either light in the loafers or needs to buy some shoes
Posted by: danvalentini
September 13, 2008 04:55 PM EDT
And so now we come to 2009 and, with the help of catholics who embrace social justice over abortion etc., soon we will have a new president and the cherished "change". I imagine we will quickly see the U.S.A. change it's postion in the U.N. to support, instead of resist, the abortion positions being pushed on 3rd world countries by the U.N. and who knows what great moral changes we will see in this country. Indeed Party seems to matter. Posted by: awunsch
December 30, 2008 09:39 PM EST
Add a comment