June 3, 2008


Catholics, communion and politics (EJ Dionne, June 3, 2008, San Diego Union-Tribune)

Word spread like wildfire in Catholic circles: Douglas Kmiec, a staunch Republican, firm foe of abortion and veteran of the Reagan Justice Department, had been denied communion.

His sin? Kmiec, a Catholic who can cite papal pronouncements with the facility of a theological scholar, shocked old friends and adversaries alike earlier this year by endorsing Barack Obama for president. For at least one priest, Kmiec's support for a pro-choice politician made him a willing participant in a grave moral evil.

...it's not like you can defend trying to elect a candidate who is pro-infanticide.

Posted by Orrin Judd at June 3, 2008 7:36 AM

Well not pro-infanticide perhaps, but a pro-abortion-rights candidate can certainly be defended. The biggest argument, even from a staunchly pro-life position would be that Obama's likely opponent, Mr. McCain, supports an unjust war. Perhaps Mr. Kmiec thinks that's worse than supporting abortion rights. Maybe Mr. Kmiec thinks that choosing a pro-choice candidate is better than choosing one who's pro-death-penalty. The Church doesn't prohibit voting for a pro-choice candidate when the other candidates are worse, only voting for them BECAUSE they're pro-choice.

Posted by: DRF at June 3, 2008 10:57 AM

No, he's literally pro-infanticide.

Meanwhile, it's not possible to make a morally coherent defense of leaving a genocidal dictator in charge of Iraq nor a Biblically coherent argument against the death penalty, so Mr. Kmiec loses out there too.

He's chosen to be an Obamiac rather than a serious Christian. That's his prerogative, but you can't be both.

Posted by: oj at June 3, 2008 12:34 PM

pro-infanticide : Obama led the fight in Illinois legislature to deny medical care to aborted victims who, nevertheless, survived the procedure. Even Hillary voted in US Congress to keep them alive.

pro-life and pro-death penalty : pro-life is anti-abortion, anti-killing perfectly innocent defenseless babies; pro-death penalty is to punish killers, an eye for an eye, etc. Babies are innocent, murderers are not.

pro-choice and anti-death penalty: kill defenseless babies but keep murderers alive.

Posted by: ic at June 3, 2008 1:21 PM

My understanding is that Communion can be denied if one's motivation for supporting the tainted candidate has to do with that person's pro-choice or proscribed viewpoints. Of course, as the article implies, that may only be the position of the U.S. Catholic Bishops.

Posted by: Matt Murphy at June 3, 2008 11:19 PM