Catholic Group Condemns Bush's 'Failure of Moral Leadership'

US Newswire: "Catholics for Political Responsibility has launched a stinging criticism of Bush's "failure of moral leadership," citing mounting casualties in Iraq, the torture and rendition of detainees, the growing number of families in poverty and rising abortion rates. The rise in poverty and abortion rates reverse significant progress made on these "life issues" during the 1990's. CPR is airing these critiques in two radio spots on 45 stations in OH, WI, CO, W. VA and NH. Professor of Roman Catholic Studies at College of the Holy Cross David O'Brien adds, "For all of Bush's talk about the Catholic vote, we find out from our Bishops this week that the President refused to complete the Catholic's Election Survey, the first major candidate to refuse their survey since it began in 1988. That is not surprising since Bush is on the wrong side of most Catholic teaching."

Quietly, Vatican OK's Catholics Voting for Pro-Choice Candidates

"Vatican officials clearly told the Bishops that voters are free to support pro-abortion politicians without sinning, if they support them for other policies... The Vatican's official position is that abortion IS NOT an issue that trumps every other issue politically. By the logic of this statement, the Vatican is saying that if a politician is pro-choice, but supports many other priorities of the Church, it is quite reasonable for Catholic voters to support them over a politician who is pro-life, but fails to support Catholic doctrine on many other issues. Which leaves John Kerry in a great position, since by at least one measure, he is the best Catholic in the Senate on supporting the priorities of the Bishops on non-abortion issues. So repeat this as a mantra until the media gets it. The Vatican says a) abortion is NOT the only important issue politically, and b) voters are free to support pro-abortion politicians as long as they are proportionately good on other Church priorities."

Catholic Democratic Senators Uphold Catholic Values More than Republicans

"Senators Dick Durbin (D-IL) and other Catholic senators today released an analysis of votes and actions of Catholic Senators based on the official positions taken on legislation by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB)... Senators John Kerry (D-MA), Dick Durbin (D-IL) and Edward Kennedy (D-MA) all earned an overall score of greater than 60% in accordance with issues supported by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-VT), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Patty Murray (D-WA), Mike DeWine (R-OH), Mary Landrieu (D-LA), Jack Reed (D-RI), Peter Fitzgerald (R-IL), Sam Brownback (R-KS), Chris Dodd (D-CT), Joe Biden (D-DE) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) all scored 50% or better. " Of the 10 Senators below 50%, 7 are Republicans: Voinovich (OH), Bunning (KY), Santorum (PA), Murkowski (AK), Collins (ME), Domenici (NM), Sununu (NM).

Keating to Resign from Church Abuse Panel

AP reports: "Former Oklahoma Gov. Frank Keating, criticized for remarks in which he said some church officials were being as secretive as members of the Mafia, will resign as head of a national panel examining sex abuse by Roman Catholic priests, his spokesman confirmed Sunday."

Pope John Paul II Confronts Bush on Stem Cells

Bush was hoping to avoid a confrontation with Pope John Paul II over stem cell research, but the Pope would not bow to Bush's non-existent moral authority. This will greatly hinder Bush's ability to reach out to Catholic voters, who were offended by Bush's campaign embrace of Bob Jones. The Pope also embraced a number of core Democratic policies: "Respect for nature by everyone, a policy of openness to immigrants, the cancellation or significant reduction of the debt of poorer nations, the promotion of peace through dialogue and negotiation, the primacy of the rule of law." We await the day when the Pope's liberal agenda is given a fraction of the media coverage of his conservative anti-abortion agenda.