CNA Staff, Jan 1, 2021 / 04:09 pm (CNA).- During his upcoming administration, presumed President-Elect Joe Biden will have to deal with the issue of abortion, and Catholics must engage with him says Charles C. Camosy in an op-ed published by First Things on the last day of 2020.
Camosy, an associate professor of Theological and Social Ethics at Fordham University, says that “Biden doesn’t agree with the U.S. bishops about everything, but he does care about what they say and regularly tries to fit their concerns into Democratic policy proposals.”
“Perhaps Biden’s newly-created office dedicated to reaching out to conservatives should at least be something worth paying attention to,” writes the theologian, but warns that “if there is to be any outreach, then the Biden administration will need to address the greatest problem with today’s Democratic party. And that is abortion.”
“No one supports a consistent life ethic more strongly than I do,” says Camosy, author of ‘Resisting Throwaway Culture: How a Consistent Life Ethic Can Unite a Fractured People.’ “But in advocating for the full vision of St. John Paul II’s Evangelium Vitae, it does not follow that we must give all issues equal weight.”
“The U.S. bishops, though they rightly have many priorities, are quite right to claim that abortion must remain the ‘preeminent priority.’ How could ‘the greatest universal genocide’ be anything else?” Camosy writes.
The author observes that “Joe Biden used to be something close to a pro-life Democrat, but he has dramatically changed his views in recent years, especially in the lead-up to the 2020 campaign. If his administration shifts the so-called Mexico City Policy so that U.S. tax dollars fund abortions overseas, as he has promised to do, Biden will become more directly complicit in abortion than at perhaps any other time in his life. He has also reversed himself on the Hyde Amendment, which means he is in favor of forcing pro-life citizens to pay for abortions with their tax dollars.”
But, “Biden has supported Hyde and even late-term abortion bans in the past. He has said he believes there should be room in the Democratic Party for pro-lifers. In the past he has supported conscience protections,” writes Camosy, asking: “Is there any hope we can get that guy back?”
“Given what is at stake for millions of prenatal lives—as well as their mothers (who are often coerced into abortions they don’t want)—Catholics have no choice: We must engage Biden after his inauguration.”
Reminding readers that “Biden is a political animal,” Camosy argues that Catholics could push for “a grand bargain” that would entail “much lower thresholds for legal abortion and much higher levels of support for pregnant women and families. The combination of socially conservative and economically progressive policies fits well with Catholic teaching. And it would save hundreds of thousands of prenatal lives by reducing both supply and demand for abortion.”
“Catholics committed to the fullness of the teaching of the Church have an opportunity. We can encourage Biden to return to his pro-life roots, pointing out the moral urgency of the pro-life cause.”
Charles Camosy resigned from the board of Democrats for Life of America (DFLA), writing in a column in the NY Post that the Democratic Party’s extreme support of abortion left him “no choice” but to leave his party.
Read Comosy’s full op-ed here: https://www.firstthings.com/web-exclusives/2020/12/catholics-and-the-incoming-biden-administration
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