The Corner

Pro-Choice But Pro-Life

K-Lo, a reader makes a couple of good points, and makes them very well:

“I am under the impression that if a Catholic politician is for an abortion regime more protective of life than the current one and takes steps in that direction he can remain in good standing with the Church. Arnold is for parentical notification (and I bet parental consent) and against partial-birth abortion and is very unlikely to be for judicial fiat on these matters. Gray Davis was for government paid abortion in all cases and without parental notification. Moreover he was for laws that would force Catholic hospitals to perform abortions or disallow them from taking over failed government hospitals. Arnold, no doubt, is not for that either. Is it your impression (which I gather from your Corner post) that the Church requires a maximalist position at all times and in all circumstances by a political office holder? I think the accurate position is that the Church requires a Catholic politician to move the law in the direction of protecting unborn life and it is for them to determine what is politically possible. While Arnold calls himself pro-gay and pro-choice in what he actually advocates on the ground, given the political possibilities, I think he is operationally pro-life and pro-family. I think the Bishop will have to wait and see what he does.”

How do we answer that one? There are certainly distinctions to be drawn between Davis and Arnold, I figure, and no doubt the Bishop will indeed draw them. But Arnold has made it clear that he is pro-choice in principle, not merely because political circumstances leave him with little choice. The Bishop really ought to take him to task for that, no?


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