The US Catholic Bishops have done little to nothing to help Catholics discern a clear political path in the United States. Their so-called “voters guide” (Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship) has been a weak document that does more to confuse Catholics than help guide them. For this reason I’m taking it upon myself, as a simple Catholic layman, to try to give other Catholic laity some good direction that actually makes sense!
For Catholics in the United States, the number one issue facing our nation, our people, and our faith is ABORTION. This has been the case for nearly 50 years, and it will remain the case for the long-term foreseeable future. Every pope for the last half century (Paul VI, St. John Paul II, Benedict XVI, and Francis) has militantly declared abortion the greatest evil of our time and the most preeminent issue facing Catholic voters.
Catholics can hold good-faith positions on other issues of a prudential nature. On issues such as universal healthcare, Catholics can hold to different opinions in good faith. The same is true with welfare and option for the poor. Catholics can hold to different opinions on how to handle this in good faith. The same is true for the environment. Catholics can hold to different opinions on this in good faith too. However, on the issues of life, such as euthanasia (assisted suicide), eugenics, embryonic stem-cell research, and most especially ABORTION, this is not a prudential matter. This is an essential matter of faith. Catholics CANNOT vote for politicians that favor allowing abortion — period.
Now, the argument is always put forward in rebuttal, which says: “What if there aren’t any Pro-Life candidates? What then?” The answer is simple, you always vote for the one who is MOST Pro-Life between the two. However, in the United States, this circumstance almost never happens. In nearly every case, there is always a Pro-Life candidate somewhere in the running. Catholics are without excuse. The truth is, some Catholics just don’t like their selection of candidates, which is understandable sometimes, so they’re looking for an excuse to get out of their essential obligation to vote Pro-Life. That doesn’t work. The essential obligation is the same. Catholics are required to vote Pro-Life and there is NEVER justification for voting for a “Pro-Choice” candidate when a Pro-Life candidate is available. There is no excuse whatsoever. Even if you don’t like the Pro-Life candidate. Even if you think the Pro-Life candidate is a pompous ass. Even if the Pro-Life candidate won’t give you anything else you want. You still have to vote for the Pro-Life candidate. WHY? Because if the sanctity of human life doesn’t matter, then neither does anything else. Any politician who is “okay” with killing babies, for the sake of furthering his/her political career, is going to be “okay” with hurting other people for the same reason. Is this the kind of politician you want to trust with healthcare decisions? Is this the kind of politician you want to trust with welfare decisions? Seriously? Who cares what he/she thinks about healthcare, welfare or the environment! He/she favors the slaughter of unborn babies! How can you, as a so-called “Catholic,” be okay with that?
So the Pro-Life issue should be a litmus test that we Catholic voters impose on our political candidates. If they pass the Pro-Life litmus test, then we can look at the other issues, and decide whether or not to support/oppose such candidates in a prudential way, but they have to pass the Pro-Life litmus test first — no exceptions.
Having said that something must be addressed regarding candidates of the US Democratic Party (DNC). There is this little game these candidates like to play, and it’s designed to deceive. The reason why they play it is because they know they won’t get any backing from the DNC unless they do. This is because the DNC is a militant, pro-abortion political party (source). Any Democrat candidate who comes out Pro-Life can expect to have all his funding pulled, and the party will not back him/her. So the only way to advance as a candidate in the US Democrat Party (DNC) is to support abortion. So the little game Democrat candidates play is this. They say: “I’m personally against abortion, but I would never want to impose my views on others.” This is probably the dumbest thing any political candidate could ever say, but for some strange reason it works. People fall for it all the time. Just to illustrate how dumb it is, let’s substitute the word “abortion” with some other crimes against humanity…
- “I’m personally against murder, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against rape, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against theft, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against arson, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against identity theft, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against rioting, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against child molestation, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against child pornography, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against teenage prostitution, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against sex trafficking, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
- “I’m personally against slavery, but I would never want to impose my views on others.”
The last excuse was used by many politicians prior to America’s Civil War. This has got to be the dumbest thing any politician could ever say, but it’s said all the time. Let me give you a little lesson in politics. Remember this well. ALL LAWS ARE MORAL LAWS BASED ON SOCIAL STANDARDS OFTEN DEFINED BY RELIGION. It’s illegal to kill people on the street because our society says that’s wrong, and the reason why our society says that’s wrong is because our society was originally built on the religious understanding that God forbids it: “Thou Shalt Not Murder.” The same is true for theft, and other things. Don’t ever let a politician get away with telling you he won’t oppose abortion simply because he doesn’t want to impose his religious beliefs on others. That’s a cop-out. It’s weak and it’s cowardly. It’s also self-serving. He/she is trying to further his/her political career by allowing the bloodshed of innocence. He/she is a monster, and shouldn’t be allowed to have any political power at all. Regardless of what he/she says he/she will do for the poor, sick or environment. For decades, the US Catholic bishops have coddled Catholic politicians like this, by publishing confusing voting guides and failing to speak out against them, and then giving them communion when Canon Law forbids it. It’s shameful!
So now I, as a Catholic layman, will have to do their job for them on a silly Internet blog. It’s something I shouldn’t have to do, I wish I didn’t have to do, and I really don’t want to do, but here it is…
If you’re a Catholic, you simply cannot be a member of the US Democratic Party (DNC). If you are, you’re basically denying your Catholic faith. Nor can you vote for any Democratic Party candidate. If you do, you’re basically denying your faith when you vote. If you are a member of the Democratic Party, or have voted for Democrat candidates, you need to go straight to confession, re-register with a different political affiliation, and never vote Democrat again.
Now, the question will immediately arise: “Does that mean I need to register with the Republican Party (GOP) and vote for Republicans?” The answer is no.
You can register Republican, and vote for Republican candidates, if you want to, but you don’t have to. Basically, there are three viable party options for Catholics in the United States. They are as follows…
- The Republican Party (GOP): This is the most common choice for Catholics who have left the Democratic Party, and it is the most well organized alternative with the most viable candidates. (website, facebook, twitter. instagram, youtube) The Republican Party is on the right side of the abortion issue, but it may not always be on the right side of other issues, especially issues important to Catholics. Of course, in a general election, Catholics can vote for Republican candidates, even if registered with a different political party, and that sort of thing happens all the time. I personally vote for Republican candidates often, even though I happen to be registered with another political party.
- The Solidarity Party (ASP): This is the real alternative for Catholic Democrats wishing to leave the US Democratic Party (DNC). The American Solidarity Party (ASP) is a Pro-Life alternative to the DNC that is based almost entirely on Catholic social teaching. (website, facebook, twitter, instagram, youtube) So it’s a good alternative for Catholics in particular. The Solidarity Party is an American branch affiliated internationally with the Christian Democrat parties in Europe and Latin America. In this party you’ll find a strong emphasis on option for the poor, the environment, peaceful foreign-policy, and universal healthcare. I am personally a member of the Solidarity Party, and I highly recommend it. I’m in good company with Fr. Dwight Longenecker, as well as Dr. Charles A. Coulombe, among many others.
- Independent: You don’t have to register in a political party to vote in the United States. You only have to register in a political party if you want to participate in that party’s primary or caucus. Some states don’t even require that. Some states allow voters to choose their party ballot the moment they walk into the polling station on the day of the primary. These are called “open-primary states.” It all depends on where you live, but nobody in the United States is REQUIRED to register with a political party just to vote in a general election. If you don’t want to mess with it, then don’t! If your state requires some kind of voter registration, just check the box marked “Independent” or “No Party Affiliation” and you can be done with it. When the primaries come around, you can stay home, unless you live in an open-primary state where party membership doesn’t matter, and you can declare your ballot at the polling station. When the general election comes around, go vote, but just make sure you vote Pro-Life.
See, that wasn’t hard. You can do this. There is nothing complicated for Catholics in the US political system. It’s a shame you have to learn about this from an Internet blog, since our bishops like to overly complicate and confuse things with their voting guide. But now you know. It’s not hard. Just vote Pro-Life, and register as either Republican, Solidarist, or Independent. That’s all there is to it. Now, please spread the word by sharing this essay with others. God bless.