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Catholic voters and the 2020 presidential election

While Trump will likely continue to enjoy strong approval ratings among evangelical Protestants, Catholic voters are, as usual, harder to read.

U.S. President Donald Trump joins Sens. James Lankford, R-Okla., and Chris Coons, D-Del., in prayer at the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington Feb. 7, 2019. (CNS photo/Kevin Lamarque, Reuters)

A little more than a year and a half before the presidential election of 2020, the post-Mueller features of that contest are coming into focus along with some clues to its possible outcome. One conclusion to which the data point is that a relatively small body of voters, with Catholics very much among them, may be crucial to the outcome.

Above all, next year’s voting will be a referendum on President Donald Trump. And here it appears that some basic numbers are already largely in place. Major changes are unlikely in the next 18 months, assuming (which of course can’t be safely assumed) that neither the report by special counsel Robert Mueller nor much of anything else alters the views of voters whose minds are already made up.

To illustrate that, Washington Post columnist Charles Lane points out that as of April 1, 2017 Trump’s approval rating stood at 41.5% with 52.5% disapproving. Then came two years that featured a tidal wave of events–the firing of FBI director James Comey, the Senate hearings on Supreme Court nominee (now justice) Brett Kavanaugh, a 35-day shutdown of major portions of the federal government, and much else.

And after all that…as of April 1 this year, Trump’s approval rating stood at 42.3% with 52.8% disapproving. Practically speaking, that is to say, there had been no change.

From this Lane drew the conclusion–open to challenge in light of the Mueller report, to be sure, but reasonable just the same–that “Americans have made up their minds about Trump, and nothing between now and Election Day–not actual events, and certainly not the spin that his political opponents put on those events–is likely to change that.”

But will Mueller’s handiwork be a game changer? In fact, it will be a while before we know. Pending that, it appears that the result in November 2020 will depend on which party does the better job turning out its base. For Democrats, it also means extending the party’s 2016 edge in the popular vote into battleground states like Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin while avoiding scaring off moderate voters by swinging left to please activists in the primaries. For Trump, it means holding on especially to evangelical Protestants, something he seems likely to do considering that his approval rating among members of that group stood at nearly seven in ten early this year.

Catholic voters are harder to read. Exit polls back to 2004 show a majority not only supporting the winners of presidential elections but usually doing that by nearly the same margin as the electorate as a whole. The 2016 election was a slight exception, with Catholics again backing the winner, Trump, but giving him a larger share of their votes than the total body of voters (52% as against 46.1%).

Among white non-Hispanic Catholics, moreover, six out of ten voted for Trump. Whether that group stands with him next year may well determine the outcome of the election.

That in turn may help explain why Trump and Vice President Mike Pence have placed so much emphasis lately on condemning proposals allowing late-term abortion–embraced by the Democratic governor of New York and adopted there, similarly embraced by the Democratic governor of Virginia but set aside in that state. Whoever the Democrats choose to represent them in 2020, the candidate will have to decide whether it would be smart to go into another close presidential election with that particular albatross around his or her neck.


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About Russell Shaw 181 Articles
Russell Shaw was secretary for public affairs of the National Conference of Catholic Bishops/United States Catholic Conference from 1969 to 1987. He is the author of 20 books, including Nothing to Hide and the highly acclaimed American Church: The Remarkable Rise, Meteoric Fall, and Uncertain Future of Catholicism in America.

40 Comments

  1. “For Democrats, it also means extending the party’s 2016 edge in the popular vote into battleground states like Florida, Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin while avoiding scaring off moderate voters by swinging left to please activists in the primaries.”

    The Democrats have already swung left. Where’s the mention of the identity politics that is prevalent in urban blue areas?

    Catholics may not believe that they have an obligation to vote for Trump rather than the (D) candidate. But they do have an obligation to determine where their group allegiances lie, rather than trying to play the “moderate middle” until it is too late to salvage the credibility of the Catholic Church for the future.

  2. The situation is especially confusing because of the USCCB’s virtually unanimous embrace of the prudential policy agenda of the Democrat Party (This excludes the pro-life issue: Cardinal Dolan has made clear that being pro-life is not a left-right or partisan issue but a moral issue).

    Perhaps the bishops have precious little influence on the political views of the faithful, but with their silence on teachings like Humanae Vitae in issues like homosexuality, they have lost the opportunity to instruct the faithful on the principles by which to assess candidates and their agenda platforms.

    For instance, as a body, the bishops have never publicly opposed federal funding of contraceptives, either at home or abroad, even though such funding is a mandatory component of medical aid to foreign countries through the Agency for International Development.

  3. You cannot be a true, faithful Catholic Christian and vote Democrat! They are not the party they used to be. If human beings are not allowed to even be guaranteed the right to LIVE, one of the firm beliefs of being a Catholic Christian, then the Republican Party is the only “choice”. Dems are all about “choice”. Catholics have ONE choice! The Dems have left us and so I, for one, will do what my Lord wants me to do….vote for LIFE!

    • Amen amen……I do not see how Catholics vote for pro abortion …atone time D said few and rare , then Bill Clinton voted for PBA , then Hillary said ‘human rights are woemns rights’ for abortion, and Trump in third debate with her rightly stated Hillary would allow abortion 10 minutes before birth—evil snakes itself around until it chokes us, we understand being duped 30 years ago but now the beast exhorts and reveals itself….it seems to me there is no excuse [I stopeed voting D since bill Clinton won ]

    • Jane,

      Life is not only BIRTH. That is just the beginning of life. To ensure life, we must be charitable to the poor, the immigrant, the convicted murderer on death row, to our brothers and sisters of every faith and non-believers, to all races and genders…to ALL. We are not the judges, there is only One. But He did instruct us to “forgive those who trespass against us” if we want to be forgiven.

      In my city we were able to close down the only abortion clinic by faithful prayer. Government had no part in that. So to support a candidate or a political party that uses the “pro life” platform solely to gain votes but enacts policies that do not guard the sanctity and dignity of life for one and all, is not reflective of the Christian way. Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, put an executive moratorium on California’s death penalty, thus ordering a reprieve for the 737 people on death row. The action suspends any further executions in California as long as Newsom is governor.
      One always has a choice, and it’s not defined by a political party. Man’s laws are not God’s laws. Each one of us is called to make the choice to follow His laws. If we live our lives with that choice, we can make a stronger impact on society or on just one person than by some of man’s laws.

      Remember the ”plank” in our eye.

      • Capital punishment is not infallibly defined and the governor did that to play to his base. See his policies on abortion and homosexuality as seen from Catholicism.

        A plank indeed.

      • “Gavin Newsom, a Democrat, put an executive moratorium on California’s death penalty, thus ordering a reprieve for the 737 people on death row. ”

        In 2014, there were over 157,000 abortions in California. Somehow I do not see stopping executions of 737 people found guilty of crimes that call for the death penalty makes it just hunky dory to support butchering 2000 times as many innocent babies.

        “Life is not only BIRTH. That is just the beginning of life.”

        No, conception is the beginning of life. And without the protection of life in the womb those other things of which you write mean nothing.

        “to all races and genders”

        That would be “both sexes,” not “all genders,” or else you are cooperating with a lie that is a sin against nature and God.

      • “in my city we were able to close down the only abortion clinic by faithful prayer”…!’ That’s because your right to “free speech and free assembly” are guaranteed under the Constitution of the United States. How many rights will you have under a future democratic government, considering how many Democrates abhor “all these unnecessary encumbrances of an “out of date” constitution”? Worth reflection on!

      • Gavin Newsom supports infanticide along with the entire Democrat party. Hypocrites,all! They also support taxes that make everyone poor except themselves. They totally screwed up healthcare and made juvenile (Type 1) diabetics have to ration their insulin causing deaths of those diabetics. Keep in mind Type 1 is an autoimmune disease with no cure and insulin cost have skyrocketed 700% since Obamacare. Try coming up with $500 a month to be able to live with $9000 deductibles. Take a look at Joe Biden and his son Hunter are there financial dealings in Rosemont LLC. Another Uranium One and sell out of our country by the left. See their China deal along with John Kerry and his step son Heinz. 51% of an American company that make airplane parts sold to the Chinese like HRC’s sale of our uranium mine to Russia and Bill picking up his $500,000 pay off. Remember the Covington kids and the Kavanaugh hearing.

      • Abortion (right from the moment of conception) is the key issue. If we do not protect the lives of the unborn it’s less likely that we will consistently protect the lives of the born (children/adults) as they should really be protected. If the right to life from the moment of conception is not accepted as an absolute truth, then other rights become mere fashions or fads which can be accepted one day and discarded the next (or compromised insidiously).
        If the foundation is not strong, anything that’s built on it is certain to collapse. The foundation of life is that it is sacred from the moment of conception and must be protected at all costs. I put it to you that if you don’t understand the fundamentals about life, then you don’t understand anything about life. The fundamental about life is that it is sacred right from the moment of conception. Without an understanding of this anything else (generosity to your fellow man, banning the abomination that is the death penalty, banning torture of prisoners of war like waterboarding etc), loses direction, proportionality and permanence.
        I would vote (if I was eligible – I’m not American) for any candidate who is closest to the Catholic position on abortion (like Trump was during the last election) because I believe he/she would also then be closest to Catholic doctrine on other issues.
        Trump receives much criticism overseas and at home for his America first stance, but I am in complete agreeance with it because I think it is in line with Catholic doctrine – it is not charity to help a stranger first before you help your brother(charity begins at home) it is irresponsibility, it is sin. It is not charity for Americans to help foreigners (whether it is through favourable trade terms or through aid) before comprehensively meeting the needs of fellow Americans. If Trump remains the closest to the truth on abortion, then I would vote Trump because he would be the sheep in wolf’s clothing, not the wolf in sheep’s clothing like Clinton was in 2016.

    • Janes says “The Republican party is the only ‘choice.'”

      The party that routinely funds war, death, and senseless killing in the third world is not a party that Catholics can so easily choose. The Republicans talk a great game about abortion, but they care very little about life: yours, mine, a baby’s, and especially some middle-eastern peasant they are content to turn into a pink smear in the sand for political gain. This holds true for the senior leadership of the Dem party as well.

      This is why most Democrats and Republicans are interchangeable; neither party’s leadership sees a problem in killing or exploiting others in order to make their jobs a little cushier.

      Catholic voters are so often duped by the ‘right to life’ talking points that these vipers spit out. The right to life translates- not even to abortion restrictions, but just fantasizing about them. But that right doesn’t extend to the prisoner, the peasant, the old or infirm. It is high time that voters reject murderers who blather about “subsidiarity” and other buzzwords EWTN taught us to drool over.

      • How are Republicans the party of war and death? In World War I, World War II, Korea, and Vietnam, it was a Democrat President at the helm when we got involved in these wars. The people turned to a Republican every time to get us out of those conflicts and/or restore normalcy afterwards. The Democrats were the party of slavery, and now they are the party of birth control, abortion, gay rights, and transgender everything. I don’t think that is a very good track record.

    • First of all Democrats weren’t the party of slavery The Republican party in the days of Lincoln isn’t the same as the Republican party now.i learned that in college. I’m Catholic and vote Democratic. If the Republicans wanted to make abortion illegal they would have already. Repbublicans use it to get votes otherwise why wouldn’t they help the poor and oppressed? Regardless Trump is a horrible example for people with his mouth and childish behavior, additionally he lies, bullies, and is a racist. He gets the bar low showing young people how to behave badly and be rude. I use to be an educator, glad I’m not now because it would be hard to teach kids decorum and manners. I’m not Republican but Trump is his own thing he’s not Republican acting or presidential. I don’t wish him harm but wish he’d have the decency to resign or maybe be held actually accountable. I get anxiety just hearing him ramble like a spoiled brat. Why he gets away with things is scary. I just pray for a leader to have decorum, honor, empathy and not be a bad role model.

      • “I’m Catholic and vote Democratic.”

        Then you are voting for the party that has consistently supported abortion. The Republicans can’t “make abortion illegal” since the Supreme Court declared the butchery of babies to be a right found in the “penumbra” and “emanations” of the Constitution. And Democrats do their utmost to make certain that no potential Supreme Court justices who think abortion should be illegal will be approved.

        “Repbublicans use it to get votes otherwise why wouldn’t they help the poor and oppressed?”

        Insert snort of derision. Pro-abortion people seldom vote Republican. It is the Democrats who have made the support of abortion a part of their platform; it is the Democrats who refuse to vote for laws to protect the lives of babies who manage to survive abortion.

        “why wouldn’t they help the poor and oppressed?”

        Republicans do help the poor and oppressed. They just don’t think that the way to do it is to create a permanently dependent-on-government underclass. The War on Poverty is, what, 50 years old, and the policies it put in place have ruined the family.

        “Regardless Trump is a horrible example for people with his mouth and childish behavior,”

        President Trump may offend you with his “mouth” and “childish behavior,” but he has supported freedom of religion (as in protecting people like the Little Sister of the Poor) from having to pay for abortions and contraception and has done his best to stop abortion. I will take someone who speaks as he does before I take someone who says “I’ve got two daughters… I am going to teach them first of all about values and morals. But if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished with a baby.” Or ” We believe unequivocally… that every woman should have access to quality reproductive health care services, including safe and legal abortion… We will continue to oppose—and seek to overturn—federal and state laws and policies that impede a woman’s access to abortion, including by repealing the Hyde Amendment.

        “additionally he lies, bullies, and is a racist”

        If you think the Democrats don’t lie and bully, you haven’t been paying attention. Nick Sandmann could tell you differently. And what evidence do you have that President Trump is a racist? I’ve seen none.

        “He gets the bar low showing young people how to behave badly and be rude.”

        They see plenty of examples of that in the largely left-wing entertainment industry, pouring filth over the country.

        “I’m not Republican but Trump is his own thing he’s not Republican acting or presidential.”

        Your definition of “Republican acting or presidential” is “roll over and show your belly while left-wing Democrats promote contraception and abortion, same-sex ‘marriage,’ and the ridiculous idea that people can pick their sex and should be able to force other people to accept their delusion.”

        “wish he’d have the decency to resign or maybe be held actually accountable.”

        Accountable for what? And why should he resign? He won the election.

        “Why he gets away with things is scary.”

        You mean like using the CIA and FBI and Homeland Security against political opponents? Oh, wait, that was the Democrats. What is it that you think he “gets away with?”

        “I just pray for a leader to have decorum, honor, empathy and not be a bad role model.”

        You mean like William Jefferson Clinton?

  4. The frontrunner for the Democratic nomination is Bernie Sanders, a self proclaimed Socialist (an ideology condemned by the Magisterium of the Church) and an ardent proponent of class warfare and the fomenting of divisions, who is a rabid supporter of the culture of death and gender ideology, who acts as an apologist for leftist regimes like Venezuela that persecute the faithful, and has no come out for allowing murderers, rapists, pedophiles and even terrorists in prison to vote.

    Whether a Catholic can in good conscience for a Democrat in general is debatable, but Sanders is utterly unfit (morally or otherwise) to even run a pig farm.

    • and Joe Biden that so called Catholic supports abortion and infanticide and is a perfect example of the swamp. He is a perfect patsy for the Democrat party, perfectly pliable to their addenda of socialism.

  5. With all respect to Mr. Shaw, I disagree both with his analysis and his conclusions. He simply repeats the same tired assumptions and stereotypes that have dominated punditry about Presidential politics for the last fifty-plus years, relying on polling data from sources that have lost most of their credibility and have been resoundingly proven wrong in recent years. He even goes so far as to assert that Trump and Pence have been taking strong pro-life stands merely as a play for votes based on polls. This ignores the fact that they campaigned strongly on the pro-life issue in 2016 and, unlike previous GOP administrations, are actually doing what they promised.
    The election of Trump should have shown the pundit class that things have changed in US Presidential politics, one hopes permanently. The old methods and categories no longer apply. It’s a shame Mr. Shaw seems to have missed that. The Democrats continue to tack left more and more strongly, meanwhile remaining deep in the throes of Trump Derangement Syndrome, and they will pay dearly for it in 2020.

  6. Democrats are the party that boo-d God at their convention. They stand for abortion and gay marriage while being against religious freedom. Why don’t these articles ever poll who carries the atheist vote? That alone would tell us that a vote for the democrats is a vote against Catholic beliefs. Didn’t democrats get caught trying to infiltrate the church to manipulate voters? Why isn’t that talked about more often? President Trump isn’t even close to being a perfect man. Neither were the majority of men God chose to lead in the Bible.

  7. It’s an utter shame that the only candidate that purports to be pro-life is an obvious liar and narcissist.
    Although, there are so many Bishops that tow the same dishonest, self aggrandizing line, it’s a wonder Trump’s not a shoe-in with nominal Catholics. As they ignore such obnoxious behaviour in their Bishops and Cardinals (especially the nine Cardinals closest to this left-leaning Pope) why do they find it so objectionable in their president?.
    I’m a Catholic who actually believes the perennial teachings of the Church, so it often feels almost sinful to even participate in politics by voting for any of these power hungry panderers (especially as I live in Canada which is led by the king of hypocritical Catholic politicians himself…Trudeau Jr.).
    But if I was a US citizen, I’m afraid I’d feel obliged to vote for Trump, in spite if his obvious egregious character flaw.
    If Trump is somehow ousted by the Demonocrats (however unlikely it may be) Pence, if given the chance, and even though a bit of a sycophant, might actually step up to the plate and act like a real Catholic leader.

    • “Pence, if given the chance, and even though a bit of a sycophant, might actually step up to the plate and act like a real Catholic leader.”

      He would have to return to the Church first.

  8. “The 2016 election was a slight exception, with Catholics again backing the winner, Trump, but giving him a larger share of their votes than the total body of voters (52% as against 46.1%)
    That is not correct.
    “New data from a nonpartisan political science organization say, ‘not so fast.’”
    “According to an analysis of American National Election Studies data by a political scientist at Georgetown University’s Center for Applied Research in the Apostolate, Catholic voters narrowly went for Democrat Hillary Clinton, 48 percent to 45 percent. Among Hispanic Catholics, Mrs. Clinton cleaned up handily, winning by more than 50 points.” Published in America magazine.
    Self-identified Catholics voted for Barack Obama in 2008 by 54%; and in 2012 by 50%.
    The fact that Catholics have voted for the most pro-abortion presidential candidates ever, in the last 3 presidential elections, means the U.S. Bishops and the clergy have failed to instruct their sheep on the word of God in such a way that Catholics would have the common sense to act on what they profess to believe and pray for in Mass every Sunday. Catholics profess to believe that God is the giver of life, and they pray for God’s “will to be done on earth as it is in heaven” while standing before Jesus in the Holy Eucharist in every Mass. God created in heaven the life of every single person that was aborted on earth. How are Catholics, endorsing with their names and supporting with their actions (voting) for the pro-abortion Democrat party, living up to what they say they believe and pray for?
    Abortion has remained legal for the past 46 years in the U.S. because of Catholic Democrats. The “Life in Christ” the “Catholic Catechism for Adults” (1995) teaches that “joining organizations like the Nazi Party or the KKK” are mortal “sins against the 5th Commandment” because “racial or religious discrimination hurts the feelings” of people. The obvious question is: Why isn’t joining the Decorate Party by registering in it, and voting for it, not a mortal sin against the 5th Commandment when they are enabling the murder of unborn babies to remain legal, and even now, born babies?

  9. I can see that the Catholic hierarchy has aligned with this POTUS liar, but I can’t get why Evangelicals like Franklin Graham support Trump. Gram tweeted this week when asked about a double standard with his soft-pedaling on Trump’s having affairs with at least two women while he just became the father of son Barron. Graham responded “that was in the past”. Graham mentioned nothing about the hundreds of thousands of dollars resulting in campaign finance violations to cover up the philandering.

    Is anybody in the Evangelical and Catholic Churches listening?

  10. “Legal” baby murder is an assault on humanity that has, in the last half-century, taken the lives of two-billion innocent human beings by the most violent and barbaric methods imaginable. Arms and legs ripped off of wiggling, kicking babies. Heads crushed. Immersion in caustic solution that burns the child as it convulses in agony. In a salt poisoning abortion the child can’t just drown in the solution because he/she is receiving oxygen through the umbilical cord. A woman told me she was forced into getting an abortion by her parents as a teenager. It was a salt poisoning abortion. She was alone in a room feeling her baby thrash around for an hour before she delivered a dead, bright red, baby boy. Mary spent months in jail for blocking abortion clinic entrances as an adult.

    As diabolical as this homicidal assault on humanity is, it isn’t just that. Is also a diabolical assault on Christianity as well. Caesar has claimed for himself authority over innocent human life that belongs to God alone. The state simply has no authority whatsoever to “legalize” the mass murder of innocent humanity.

    To the extent that the Church signals it approval of Caesar’s usurpation of God’s authority by its complacency, it is rendering unto Caesar that which belongs to God alone. That is blatant idolatry, which is the death of Christianity. Its approval is signalled whenever “Catholic” politicians known by all to flaming advocates of “legal” abortion are allowed to receive the Eucharist at Mass. Its approval is signalled when the bishops make pronouncements that make it sound as though it is legitimate to vote for the Democrat presidential candidate when the Democrat party ferociously defends legal abortion right up to birth and afterwards.

    Now that the Democrats are not just ferociously defending baby murder right up to birth, but celebrating it as a positive good, if the bishops do not make clear that it is a mortal sin to vote for the Democrat presidential candidate, we will have to conclude that they are enemies of God and humanity, who might as well proclaim “We have no King but Caesar!” as Christ in the least of His brethren is unjustly sentenced to death

  11. AGAIN, no political party has the answer. It takes each one of us. I’m curious to know what each of you have personally done to help a pregnant woman/girl who, for one of many reasons, does not believe she can carry to term. I have stood outside of abortion clinics and prayed; I donate to Good Counsel Shelter in Alabama (they rely solely on donations as they do not qualify for any federal funding), and today the Knights of Columbus began a Novena to pray for a culture of Life.

    It’s not enough to ban abortions. Alternatives must be offered. Please read the following to learn what the Democratic party has done.

    The Pregnant Women Support Act was created by the Democrats for Life of America and introduced into Congress by then Representative Lincoln Davis of Tennessee.

    It is, according to Democrats for Life, “a comprehensive package of federal legislation and policy proposals that will reduce the number of abortions… While both Democrats and Republicans talk about reducing the number of abortions, Democrats for Life of America offers real solutions to make this goal a reality. With bold new ideas, sound research and policy arguments, the Pregnant Women Support Act contains proven policy suggestions to dramatically reduce the number of abortions in America.”

    Democrats for Life of America:

    Pregnant Women Support Act (95-10)
    POSTED IN FEDERAL (CURRENT LEGISLATION).

    The Pregnant Women Support Act – the Pregnancy Assistance Fund (PAF) is one of our proudest accomplishments. Signed into law as part of the Affordable Care Act, 17 States received PAF grants and are now helping pregnant women. It is not enough to simply oppose abortion; we must provide support and provide options for women facing unplanned or crisis pregnancies.

    Senator Casey (D-PA) introduced legislation to expand the PAF. Please contact your Senator and urge him or her to support S. 144, the Pregnancy Assistance Fund Expansion Act.

    BACKGROUND:

    DFLA proposed a comprehensive plan that will reduce the number of abortions by 95% in the next 10 years by promoting abstinence, personal responsibility, adoptions and support for women and families who are facing unplanned pregnancy. The 95-10 Initiative seeks to reduce the number of abortions in America through Federal, state and local efforts as well as support and encouragement to volunteers and dedicated people on the front lines helping pregnant women. Much attention has been given to ending abortion or keeping it legal. We believe that we must do more to reduce the abortion rate by helping and supporting pregnant women.

    You can continue reading at https://democratsforlife.org/index.php/pregnant-women-support-act-95-10

    • You don’t reduce slavery, you outlaw it because it is evil. You don’t reduce “legal” baby murder, you outlaw it because it is evil.

      How would a plan to reduce slavery have sounded to Abolitionists in 1850?

      • Quite true. And most of those efforts to reduce abortion seem to be based on the belief that all women who get abortions do so because they are poor and desperate. Sadly, there are many who are killing their babies because they are inconvenient or embarassing. “Helping and supporting” the mothers is not going to solve the problem.

    • You are a Democrat working to support Life in the Democrat Party. Many thanks and prayers.

      The original legislation died twice before being added to Obamacare and signed into law. Considering that the right to an abortion is part of the Democratic Party Plank and Democrats vote, almost to the person except for a few holdouts, defeating every bill that limits abortion or attempts to define the humanity of an unborn baby, my question to you is…do you believe as the Catechism of the Catholic Church states in the absolute prohibition of every therapeutic abortion? Or, are there exceptions?

      Also, how do Democrats for Life work on the likes of the mayor and governor of such states as New York and Vermont where recent overwhelming Democrat legislation has no limits on abortion?

      • I do not support abortion. But I’m also not a one-issue voter. As I have stated previously, I personally act to help women see options to abortion. The constitution gives us the right to bear arms. I choose not to. The message I’m trying to convey is that even though government creates laws, each individual man has a choice. When slavery was permitted “by law”, there were men/women who personally made efforts to help those enslaved by laws. I believe individuals can have a true impact in the life of a woman faced with a pregnancy crisis. No one here has remarked on what he/she personally does to help a woman facing such a crisis. This can’t simply be left in the hands of politicians.

        • “No one here has remarked on what he/she personally does to help a woman facing such a crisis.”

          My wife and I took in unwed teenagers and young adult women who needed a place to stay while they carried their baby to term.

          Implying or saying outright that Pro-lifers don’t care about the women or born children is an old, tired, worn out tactic of the pro-baby-murder movement.

          Pro-lifers run countless crisis-pregnancy centers that help women before and after they make a choice about abortion, regardless of their choice.

          • That’s wonderful, Harry! And we need thousands more like you. When 157,000 babies are aborted in one year in California alone, we need A LOT more of you. And that has been my point. Individuals can make a difference. No political party has provided the solutions. I never implied or said outright that Pro-lifers don’t care about pregnant women or born children. I simply stated that no one in this conversation had remarked on their personal efforts. Please don’t attribute words to me that I have not said. My words are clearly written in black and white.

        • “No one here has remarked on what he/she personally does to help a woman facing such a crisis.”

          Possibly because no one here thought it was appropriate to boast?

        • But your comments – as far as they are political – are about Democrats. Newsom and Democrats for life.

          This one issue is life or death. Slavery was largely supported by the Democrats before and after the war between the states.

          As much as personal efforts regarding helping pregnant women are laudatory, until the main premise of the support for abortion is defeated – and the main plank of the Democrat Party regarding abortion is destroyed – your graceful efforts will still be on the margins.

        • “I do not support abortion. But”

          That’s the problem.

          How about,

          “I don’t support rape. But…”
          “I don’t support larceny. But…”
          “I don’t support child abuse. But…”
          “I don’t support promiscuity. But…”

          That “but” negates anything that goes before it.

      • Also, I never said I am a Democrat. I do not vote for a political party. I’ve stated that the issue of life is not decided by any political party. I prefer to listen to options presented and to judge political leaders by their actions, not only their words.

  12. I voted for the American Solidarity Party candidate in 2016 because I couldn’t hold my nose long enough or hard enough to vote for Trump, and at that time he had no record and certainly did not seem principled in any case. I still don’t think Trump is any sort of moral titan, but now he has a record. I often said back in what now seem like the good old days of “personally opposed but won’t impose my views on others” that I’d sooner vote for a candidate who was personally in favor of abortion but consistently voted against it than one who claimed to be on our side but did nothing to help us. I am starting to see Trump in that sort of light. I have also thought that there may be a price (or penance) to pay for the millions of babies who have been murdered, and the obviously negative aspects of Trump may be part of the penance we have to do for those murders. And while Trump can’t make any serious claim to be religious, he doesn’t appear to be hostile towards religion either. Finally, he seems to be one of the few who is actually trying to roll back the ratchet toward the left instead of simply stalling it until the next leftist ideologue takes over. I may actually not need to hold my nose quite as long in 2020.

  13. I believe today’s meditation from the Catholic Company speakers to all of us having this discussion: no sides, no particular political party, just human beings.

    “You must first have peace in your own soul before you can make peace between other people. Peaceable people accomplish more good than learned people do. Those who are passionate often can turn good into evil and readily believe the worst. But those who are honest and peaceful turn all things to good and are suspicious of no one. … It is no test of virtue to be on good terms with easy-going people, for they are always well liked. And, of course, all of us want to live in peace and prefer those who agree with us. But the real test of virtue and deserving of praise is to live at peace with the perverse, or the aggressive and those who contradict us, for this needs a great grace. … in this mortal life, our peace consists in the humble bearing of suffering and contradictions, not in being free of them, for we cannot live in this world without adversity. Those who can best suffer will enjoy the most peace, for such persons are masters of themselves, lords of the world, with Christ for their friend, and heaven as their reward.”
    — Thomas á Kempis, p.72-73

    May we find peace within us and between us and answer God’s specific call for each one of us! Praying for a culture of Life.

    • “Anger may be understood in two ways. On one way, as a simple movement of the will, whereby one inflicts punishment, not through passion, but in virtue of a judgment of the reason: and thus without doubt lack of anger is a sin. This is the sense in which anger is taken in the saying of Chrysostom, for he says (Hom. xi in Matth., in the Opus Imperfectum, falsely ascribed to St. John Chrysostom): “Anger, when it has a cause, is not anger but judgment. For anger, properly speaking, denotes a movement of passion”: and when a man is angry with reason, his anger is no longer from passion: wherefore he is said to judge, not to be angry. On another way anger is taken for a movement of the sensitive appetite, which is with passion resulting from a bodily transmutation. This movement is a necessary sequel, in man, to the movement of his will, since the lower appetite necessarily follows the movement of the higher appetite, unless there be an obstacle. Hence the movement of anger in the sensitive appetite cannot be lacking altogether, unless the movement of the will be altogether lacking or weak. Consequently lack of the passion of anger is also a vice, even as the lack of movement in the will directed to punishment by the judgment of reason. ” St. Thomas Aquinas. http://www.newadvent.org/summa/3158.htm

  14. My only hope in contributing to this discussion among Catholics was to stop the judgment among us. There’s enough of that surrounding us! Jane said “You cannot be a true, faithful Catholic Christian and vote Democrat!” “A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian. This is not the gospel,” the Pope told journalists who asked his opinion on Trump’s proposals to halt illegal immigration. So, just be open enough to understand that the election decision is certainly a difficult, conflicting one at best. Do what you can do, what you’re called to do. But please, stop making general statements and passing judgments about one political party or another. They are made up of individuals. I know that ALL Republicans do not think alike on ALL issues. The same applies to ALL political Parties. I will not be responding to your questions or remarks going forward. I wish you all God’s peace.
    TheDivineMercy.org/dmdsignup

  15. Thank you Maria! God is love and mercy. I will be contacting my Senator to ask him to support the Pregnancy Assistance Fund Expansion Act. Lets find things we CAN all unite behind!!

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