Which candidates are pro-life?

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October 10, 2008

Dr. Deal Hudson of "Inside Catholic" reports that Dr. Nicholas P. Cafardi, noted legal scholar, former Dean of Duquesne University Law School and now prominent Catholic supporter of the candidacy of Senator Barack Obama, has just resigned from his position as a member of the Board of Trustees of the Franciscan University of Steubenville.

Cafardi was once hailed, along with fellow legal scholar Doug Kmiec, as a leading Pro-Life voice among Catholic academics.

Cafardi literally shocked the Pro-Life community when he, like Kmiec, endorsed Barack Obama. The candidate's record on the fundamental human rights issue of our age, the right to life of every human person from conception to natural death, is completely antithetical to the teaching of the Catholic Church as well as to the Natural law which both Cafardi and Kmiec purported to champion. (Catholic Online, 10/7/08)

The president of the University, Fr. Terrence Henry, TOR, received a letter of voluntary resignation from the former Dean on Monday, October 6, 2008 following the October 2 release of a statement from Franciscan University, a portion of which appears below:

Franciscan University stands with the Catholic Church in its opposition to abortion as an intrinsic evil and violation of the sanctity of human life. The University does not believe the abortion battle is lost, as Dr. Cafardi states, but that the tide is decidedly turning in favor of life. The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has stated, "Life issues are paramount among all issues because the right to life is fundamental. All other rights are based on it."

In keeping with the Church's guidelines, Franciscan University does not endorse any particular political party or candidate. It does, however, strongly encourage its students, faculty, staff, alumni, and other constituents to view the life issues — such as abortion, euthanasia, and the protection of marriage and the family — as foundational, and as issues that do not lend themselves to the prudential judgment of the voter.

As a New Jersey governor and national Republican figure, Christie Whitman won votes and political acclaim by supporting abortion rights.

But the stance got Whitman bounced from a speaking gig at Stuart Country Day School of the Sacred Heart, a Catholic school of 550 girls in Princeton Township.

Whitman, who served as New Jersey's first and only female governor from 1994 to 2001, was booked to speak at a "Women in Leadership Forum" which had been scheduled for October 6th before the school canceled the event at the request of the Diocese of Trenton Bishop John M. Smith.

In a September 23rd communication to the school, Bishop Smith wrote that Whitman, 62, has made her pro-choice position known for years and thus supports something that is "totally contrary" to Catholic teachings and the Church's moral responsibility to respect human life from conception to natural death.

The invitation, Bishop Smith wrote, could mislead students, teachers and faculty to falsely conclude that the school supports abortion rights. (Trenton Times, 10/7/08)

The most telling debate Barack Obama ever had was not with John McCain but with Patrick O'Malley, who served with Obama in the Illinois Senate and engaged Obama in a colloquy every American should read. The Obama-O'Malley debate was a defining moment for Obama because it dealt with such a fundamental issue: the state's duty to protect the civil rights of the young and disabled.

Eight years ago, nurse Jill Stanek went public about the "induced labor abortions" performed at the Illinois hospital where she worked. Often done on Down syndrome babies, the procedure involved medicating the mother to cause premature labor. Babies who survived this, Stanek testified in the U.S. Congress, were brought to a soiled linen room and left alone to die without care or comforting.

Then-Illinois state Sen. Patrick O'Malley contacted the state attorney general's office to see whether existing laws protected a newborn abortion-survivor's rights as a U.S. citizen. He was told they did not. So, O'Malley — a lawyer, veteran lawmaker, and colleague of Obama on the Illinois Senate Judiciary committee — drafted legislation.

In 2001, he introduced three bills. SB1093 said if a doctor performing an abortion believed there was a likelihood the baby would survive, another physician must be present "to assess the child's viability and provide medical care." SB1094 gave the parents, or a state-appointed guardian, the right to sue to protect the child's rights. SB1095 simply said a baby alive after "complete expulsion or extraction from its mother" would be considered a "‘person,' ‘human being,' 'child' and 'individual.'"

The bills dealt exclusively with born children. "This legislation was about preventing conduct that allowed infanticide to take place in the state of Illinois," O'Malley said.

The Judiciary Committee approved the bills with Obama in opposition. On March 31, 2001, they came up on the Illinois Senate floor. Only one member spoke against them: Obama. "Nobody else said anything," O'Malley recalled. The official transcript validates this. Click here to read the rest of the column. ("The Obama Debate Every American Should See" by Terrence Jeffrey, Townhall.com, 10/8/08)

During the discussion, Obama said, "the testimony during the committee indicated that one of the key concerns was—is there was a method of abortion, an induced abortion, where the — fetus or child, as —as some might describe it, is still temporarily alive outside the womb." He went on — "And one of the concerns that came out in the testimony was the fact that they were not being properly cared for during that brief period of time that they were still living."

O'Malley responded, "This bill suggests that appropriate steps be taken to treat that baby as a—a citizen of the United States and afforded all the rights and protections it deserves under the Constitution of the United States." Obama then proceeded to invent a term for such a baby. He called him/her a "pre-viable fetus"—a complete contradiction in terms, since a born baby cannot be a "fetus."

Obama's use of the phrase "temporarily alive" says it all. Like all promoters of legal abortion, the end result of an abortion must necessarily be a dead baby. That is why he would not countenance calling abortion survivors "persons." "I mean it — it would essentially bar abortions," said Obama, "because the equal protection clause does not allow somebody to kill a child, and if this is a child, then this would be an anti-abortion statute."

So there you have it. Barack Obama has total disregard for the rights of innocent babies both born and unborn, a position that disqualifies him from consideration for any public office in this country.

Never forget that YOU were once an embryo.

Republican National
Coalition for Life

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