Some Catholic Bishops Assail Health Plan
(Hat tip: PewSitter.com)
The New York Times reports:
WASHINGTON — The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops has been lobbying for three decades for the federal government to provide universal health insurance, especially for the poor. Now, as President Obama tries to rally Roman Catholics and other religious voters around his proposals to do just that, a growing number of bishops are speaking out against it.My Comments:
... in the last two weeks some leaders of the conference, like Cardinal Justin Rigali, have concluded that Democrats’ efforts to carve out abortion coverage are so inadequate that lawmakers should block the entire effort.
“No health care reform is better than the wrong sort of health care reform,” Bishop R. Walker Nickless of Sioux City, Iowa, declared in a recent pastoral letter, urging the faithful to call their members of Congress.
In a diocesan newspaper column this week, Archbishop Charles J. Chaput of Denver agreed, saying the proposal was “not only imprudent; it’s also dangerous.”
The bishops’ opposition — published in diocesan newspapers, disseminated online by conservative activists, and reported in a Roman Catholic newspaper to be distributed this weekend at churches around the country — is another setback for Mr. Obama’s health care efforts. His administration has been counting on the support of Catholic leaders to help rally believers behind his health care plan. Just last week, he held a conference call with 140,000 religious voters to appeal to what he called their “moral convictions.”
The bishops’ backlash reflects a struggle within the church over how heavily to weigh opposition to abortion against concerns about social justice.
In an Aug. 11 letter to Congress, Cardinal Rigali of Philadelphia, head of the bishops’ anti-abortion efforts called the proposed division of funds “an illusion,” arguing that taxpayers would still indirectly help cover abortion. He urged lawmakers to block the current House legislation from coming up for a vote unless it can be amended to expressly prohibit financing for the procedure.
But as the focus has shifted to the health care overhaul’s ramifications for abortion provisions, bishops who oppose it on many grounds have grown more vocal.
“The Catholic Church does not teach that government should directly provide health care,” Bishop Nickless of Sioux City wrote, adding, “Any legislation that undermines the vitality of the private sector is suspect.”
Memo to New York Times:
Opposition to abortion IS a "concern about social justice". In fact, the sanctity of all human life is THE social justice concern.
Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
Archbishop Chaput Again: Health Care Reform That Funds Abortion Is Not Common Ground
Fr. Euteneuer's Response to Cecile Richards' Attack On Catholic Bishops
In Face of Planned Parenthood Attack, USCCB Official Insists Abortion is Not Health Care
Mainstream Media Spreads Untruths on Behalf of Obama: Newsday Claims Bishop Murphy Supports ObamaCare; Lies About Plan's Coverage of Abortion
Cecile Richards and Planned Parenthood Attack U.S. Catholic Bishops for Defending Life
U.K. Catholic Rag Admonishes U.S. Bishops: Back Barack on Health Care, Stop Getting "Distracted" by Abortion
Archbishop Chaput: ‘Common Ground’ Claim Will Be Tested by Details of Health Care Reform
Religious Left: Do Not be "Distracted" by Abortion Coverage in ObamaCare
USCCB Prolife Chief Draws 'Lines in the Sand' on Healthcare
American Papist: Follow the Money to Determine Why Catholic Orgs Support ObamaCare Despite Inclusion of Abortion Coverage
Knights of Columbus Pass "Fishy" Resolution Opposing Any Health Care Reform That Funds Abortion
New York Archbishop: Church Will Have No Part in "Health Care" That Destroys Life
Deal Hudson: "Why Catholics Will Not Get Abortion Out of the Health Care Bill" [UPDATED]
Cardinal Rigali "Distracts" from Health Care Debate
A "Loud Silence"
Obama's Nun: Ignore "Insignificant Details", Pass Health Care Bill Now
Bishops Speak Out on ObamaCare