He’s Not a Complication; He’s a Candidate

The Washington Post headline read: "Huckabee Complicates GOP Contest."

Wrong. What is complicating the GOP contest is the attempt to imagine, craft, articulate, and sell a "conservatism" that does not have respect for the dignity of life as its most fundamental value.

What conservatism is supposed to be conserving, as in preserving and passing on, is classical liberalism and the eternal truths upon which it is grounded. I know this is confusing at a time when the term "liberal" is used as the polar opposite for "conservative."  But consider the use of the term in the phrase "liberal arts education."  The point is human freedom — not license — and the development of those habits of mind that make a person fit to rule himself and to take his place in a republic of free people. Undergirding this is the idea — as stressed so magnificently in the Declaration of Independence that this freedom belongs to man as an inalienable right, given to him, not by the fiat of government, but by God, that the first right that belongs to man is the right to life, and it is "to secure these rights" [that] "Governments are instituted among Men."  The Catholic Church concurs and teaches that no commitment to "human rights" or "civil rights" can be genuine without the right to life being first. One can only be free if first one is alive. One can only pursue happiness if first one is alive.

One who wishes then, to convince the citizens of a republic so ordained as "to secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity" that he is qualified to hold the office of chief executive, cannot be indifferent to, or weak, tepid, inconsistent, or mealy-mouthed in his defense of, the lives of that posterity. He cannot hold that it is allowable to experiment upon this posterity while they are very tiny, or destroy them while they are helpless in the wombs of their mothers. Any claim to "conservatism" that does not make the defense of their lives top priority is not conservatism at all.

Oh, it may be some kind of economic pragmatism. It may even be principled in its objections to confiscatory taxation as a detriment to the economic freedom of citizens. But, unless life is first, its commitment to freedom is hollow.

What makes things complicated for the GOP is that there are "economic conservatives" who consider pro-lifers to be an embarrassing annoyance, that is, when they aren't serving as useful idiots. But the fact is that the only true conservatives there are are pro-lifers and, not to put too fine a point on it: without them there is no conservatism.

This is why Huckabee is not the complication. As Deacon Keith Fournier put it in an article on Catholic Online: "The Republican Party is being shaken to the core during this Primary campaign;" he elaborates:

Those who thought they controlled the Grand Old Party have discovered that they do not. The principles which inform the Party of Lincoln are being closely reexamined and reconsidered by voters. The results are bringing deep concern to some, including some who call themselves conservative. …

Without the right to life there are no other rights and the entire structure of human rights is threatened. Without the freedom to be born there are no other freedoms. Freedom is a good of the human person. Almost 50 million persons have not been able to exercise it because their lives were taken in the first home of the whole human race, their mothers womb, under the current practice of 'legal' abortion on demand in America. …

[T]he major problem with some contemporary conservative thought [is that] it does not operate from a foundational philosophy which positions the dignity of every human person as the polestar of every public policy analysis. It then fails to order and prioritize issues based upon a hierarchy of values and importance.

 Right on. First, the right to life, and then — because it is the pro-creator and protector and nurturer of that human being whose right to life is inalienable — the good of the family and protection of the institution of marriage. Everything else is negotiable.

Mike Huckabee gets this. That is why a January 29th guest commentator on Catholic Online, Robert Stackpole, STD, after a point by point analysis of Huckabee's positions in light of the bishops' recent document, Faithful Citizenship, called him, "the most Catholic candidate" in the race:

Gov. Mike Huckabee is the only candidate running for the presidency who has fully, clearly and consistently been Pro-Life and Pro-Family throughout his public career. He has always strongly supported both the Right to Life and Traditional Marriage Amendments to the Constitution, which most Catholics know are essential to the protection of these social values. He states on his website:

"There is a lot more that a pro-life President can do than wait for a Supreme Court vacancy, and I will do everything I can to promote a pro-life agenda and pass pro-life legislation. …I will staff all relevant positions with pro-life appointees. I will use the Bully Pulpit to change hearts and minds, to move this country from a culture of death to a culture of life. I have no desire to throw women in jail, I just want to stop throwing babies in the garbage."

Catholics need to be crystal clear on the importance of these matters. For authentic Catholics, the economy is not the most important issue we face. Opposing "intrinsic evils" is even more important. Along with slavery, legalized abortion has been America's most shameful moral crime, an on-going "slaughter of the innocents" in our midst, and a fundamental denial of the inalienable right to "life" that our Declaration of Independence claims it is the main purpose of governments to protect.

With the U.S. Supreme Court probably only one vote shy of the majority needed to overturn legalized abortion in this country, Catholic Americans cannot afford to risk the election of another Johnny-come-lately to the Pro-Life cause. The last time we did that as a nation (George Bush Sr.), we ended up with pro-abortion Judge Souter on the court.

Gov. Huckabee, however, has neither wavered nor equivocated on this issue: as Governor of Arkansas he pushed through the legislature the Arkansas Unborn Child Amendment that required the state to do whatever it could to protect each human life.

On family issues, also, he has been strong and consistent, obtaining an amendment to the Arkansas constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman.

I understand how having a candidate in this race who so forthrightly says these things would be an unwelcome "complication" in certain quarters. It would be so uncomplicated if no one stood on a national stage and defended life, wouldn't it? — so uncomplicated and such a shame.

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  • Guest

    Why are you always trying to push this guy on us?  I thought CE was a non-profit.

    Huckabee has pulled some of the nastiest political things I've ever heard of in the last few months, and no one hears about them.  Except those who care about conservatism – they see through him.  Notice who voted for him – the people who are suspicious of Mormonism.  Oh yeah, that's one of your pet topics also.  We had a chance for a powerful, eloquent man, who would have stood up to porn and other evils in ways that Bush and Clinton did not.

    Hucakbee is not the complication – he's not that powerful.  Some of his votes are McCain votes, or anti-Mormon votes.  It's McCain and actually Bush that is the complication.  While Bush stuck to some of the pro-life and conservative principles, he was never a conservative, nor a real leader of any movement.  That is why the party is floundering a bit now.  As someone on EWTN TV (oops, sorry, Kate O'Beirne) it's that the conservatives split the movement during the primary.  If we'd had one conservative from the beginning against McCain, that conservative would have been ahead.

    Mary, if you're such a follower of liberality (and I do know the difference, esp in the way it's been perverted), why don't you join the Dem party?  That's what Hucakbee really is - a Dem.  Oh wait, they're so anti-life now that it's sickening.

    Huckabee is a fake phoney fraud and he is on this issue also.  If you want a real analysis of a Pro Life Amendment, turn to talk show host Mark Levin who is not only a pro-life lawyer, but worked in the Reagan Administration – and they did try to push forward a pro-life amendmend.

    Learn when you're being huckstered, and when something really is PR – he got you hooked.

    We had a chance with Romney for real pro-life work.  McCain is pro-embryonic stem cell research.  Put that in your pipe and smoke it.  Huckabee helped anti-life McCain become the assumed nominee.  What are his principles again?  Please remind me because it seems he's pretty anti-life in that regard.  If you help an anti-life candidate become a nominee, then you are in reality anti-life.  Don't act like he's so moral.  He's extremely amoral.

    In addition, Sen Rick Santorum is a very pro-life and wonderful Catholic man.  He has repeatedly spoken of what McCain did in the Senate.  When it came to real pro-life achievements, McCain would refrain from putting the issue out there, because he thought it would be ''too controversial.'' Again, what are your ethics if you actively help such a man become the presumptive nominee, to advance your own career?

    Why hasn't McCain done more in the Senate than just vote, to help the babies, as you said the other day?

    He can sponsor legislation for illegals, for anti-speech, etc etc.  But he can't sponsor real pro-life legislation NOW?????  What's he waiting for, if he really cares?

    I am very sad to see CE not just educate, but push a particular candidate in the end who is not much different than Pres Bush – willing to use the pro-life 'angle' to advance his own career.

    Oh one more thing – what about the things that McCain says about judges being too pro-life, such as Justice Alito?  Does HUckabee also support that?  Then WHY would he help that man become the nominee?  Why couldn't he just work for his own candidacy, and depend on decency?  Why did he have to join forces with McCain to try to defeat Romney?

    Nasty nasty man.  I don't know where you get your info from, but you need to start doing some real research.  It's available.

  • Guest

    By the way, there is NOT a SINGLE radio talk show host in the NYC area that is exposing Huckabee and McCain for who they are that is not pro-life.  PRO-LIFE.  How dare you act like all of those upset by the actions of these two are anti-life.  They are more pro-life than McCain – and when Huckabee joins in with McCain, he is becoming anti-life.  The talk show hosts are not only pro-life as in anti-abortion, they are pro-life as in anti-embryonic stem cell destruction.  It's really weird what you're doing.  Open your eyes to what's going on.  And finally, as the editor of ''Human Events'' said this evening on EWTN, Huckabee could go after John McCain for all his inappropriate support of anti -conservative issues – he's anti-Life Amendment, anti-marriage Amendment.

    If Huckabee is as authentic and true as you have painted him to be – and probably believe he is – then why is he not legitimately questioning McCain on issues that Huckabee supposedly supports?  There is only one answer – especially in light of the fact that Huckabee is an attack dog when he wants to be – it is that he is working directly with McCain to undermine Romney – and it worked.

    Look into Huckabee's record of corruption in the very corrupt town of Little Rock.  Clinton and he share some things…

  • Guest

    "Gov. Mike Huckabee is the only candidate running for the presidency who has fully, clearly and consistently been Pro-Life and Pro-Family throughout his public career."

    Ahem. Guess you overlooked Ron Paul in making that statement. Yeah, I know you're going to say he can't be taken seriously as a contender, but then at this point in the race, neither can ol' Huckleberry.

    Looks like I'll be throwing my vote away towards a 3rd party since neither the Democrats nor the Republicans support my Catholic beliefs any longer…

  • Guest

    My, my, such vitriol. Not many punches pulled here. Just for the record I don't think that many of the Huckabee votes were anti-mormon (mine included). I haven't talked to one republican that voted Huckabee because of Romney's religious beliefs. A message is being sent to the GOP that there is still a sizable voting block that cares not only about the economy but also about social issues and if they want our votes they need to pay attention to our concerns. If Huckabee's run achieves one thing I hope it is to keep life and family issues on the table as real issues in the GOP platform. I think the party would like to push these aside as they are so polemic.

  • Guest

    Yes, faz.  I'm glad someone gets the point.

  • Guest

    If Jesus had been as vitriolic in selecting His followers as some bloggers seem to be in discussing the virtues and vices of political candidates, I wonder how many of the original twelve apostles would have actually made the cut?

    I can imagine it now: "Peter, you're going to flip-flop on knowing me.  Flip-flopper!  Flip-flopper!"

    Even Christ Himself might be criticized today by today's current mindset:

    "'Render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's?'  Why, He's pro-taxes — did you hear that?  A tax and spender!"  "'Turn the other cheek'?  Why, He's soft on terror!  You can't be turning cheeks with these terrorists, that's a pre-9/11 mentality!"  "'As we forgive those who trespass against us?'  Did you hear that, He's for amnesty for illegals!  Amnesty!'"

    How does one look into a person's heart and see potential for goodness in spite of obvious flaws?

    If you're looking for the perfect Catholic candidate, or even a good proximity, but require electablity, you are entirely out of luck in 2008.

    Where is the candidate who embodies Catholic virtues?  Who in the field is pro-life, anti-preemptive war, anti-death penalty, pro-family, anti-embryonic stem cell research, anti-discrimination, anti-poverty, etc.? 

    Is it possible that the only such person left in the race is Ron Paul?  Does he embody Catholic teachings, regardless of his electablity?  When I watched him in the debates, he struck me as a bit wacky.  But when I read all of the candidates' "Issues" section of their web sites, his reads to me as the most Catholic, unless I'm missing something.  Still, if he is not a viable candidate, the bishops would not have me vote for him. 

    The Republican Party is moving to the left.  This is undeniable.  Just a few years ago, who would have imagined the national leaders of this party would be fellows such as McCain, Schwarzenegger, Rudy G., etc.?  Not fringe members of the party, but national leaders? 

    So what is one to do?  Abstain from voting?  Vote for the "enemy" to teach the party a lesson?  Vote for the most pro-Catholic candidate in spite of viability?

    What would Jesus do?

  • Guest

    I heard that 75% of the voters in the Republican primaries on Super Tuesday were Republican.  That means that 25% were crossover voters choosing who the Republican nominee.  Our job now would be to make sure we have pro-life Senators and Congressmen and pro-life planks in the platform.  There is more out there than the Presidential race.  

  • Guest

    What is interesting about the current situation, is that if McCain could be held to a number of delegates under what he needs to win (he has 709 pledged delegates and needs 1,191) then he will have to deal either with Romney or Huckabee.  (Romney merely "suspended"; he did not withdraw, so he still holds his delegates and can control them at the convention.) Either, or both of them together can then influence the party platform. With Brownback talking to him on one side and political pressure from both Romney and Huckabee, we might see McCain take a stronger stand on some of these life issues.

    Also, as faz pointed out, it does send a message to the party, although like lavender and esmithare are indicating, if this party keeps going the direction it is, pro-lifers might need to go a third party direction.  I think it it is just a bit premature discuss that now.  The Republican Party has demonstrated its ability to field a national pro-life and pro family candiadate. If Romney and Huckabee had not done so well, I would agree on giving up on that party as a tool for pro-lifers. But you have to really deeply understand what building a third party would mean.  It takes decades of work and it means being out of power for a considerable stretch of time.  It is nothing to be glib about.

  • Guest

    gmstmh: Recently we've seen several pro-abortion candidates try to tell us they are really "Christians", but Jesus says "If you love me. keep my Commandments". To demand a "right" to murder the pre-born babies and also give support for same-sex marriage is to deny the very basic truths of our Faith. One can't be Christian and deny God's Truths.

  • Guest

    deirdrew – Since when is non-profit required to be non-thinking or "politically correct". C.E. isn't officially endorsing Huck, but Mary is pointing out that Huck is clearly pro-life. And Paul is all for inviting the terrorists right back onto our front porch. The best thing for Ron Paul would be to do a tour of duty in Iraq. Huck has made his Pro Life distinction with McCain clear, as Mary quoted. Rommey was irrationally attacking McCain and Huck for the same fallacious reasons. so, together they fought back, not so much out of explicit collaboration but out of just common sense self-preservation. You should sit down with someone intelligent and learn how to do a content analysis, rather than subscribing to irrational conspiracy theories — which your post embraces significantly. Rationally, if Huck wanted to really help McCain, he's drop his candidacy and join the McCain forces.

     

    Stan is owner of Nineveh's Crossing (a Catholic Media distribution company), SWC Films (a production company) and author of "The Moral Premise: Harnessing Virtue and Vice for Box Office Success" a Hollywood screenwriting book.

  • Guest

    My article really is not really even "about" Huckabee — it just looks like that.

  • Guest

    deirdrew:

    Those of us that support Huckabee due so due to his proven track record on the pro-life cause and how it exists as a pre-eminent criteria for Catholic voting.  Romney's sudden adoption of pro-life view immediately before starting his campaign is insufficient to establish trust.  It would be reckless to place such blind faith behind someone when there are alternatives who do have a history of being pro-life.  Furthermore, Alan Keyes accurately points out that Romney is to blame for same gender marriage in Massachusettes.  The pro-life message begins with respecting the sanctity of marriage and how sexuality fits within its context.

    If anyone has culpability in pushing McCain to the lead it is those Romney supporters who placed fiscal conservativism over the sanctity of life.

  • Guest

    Mary – I understand your article, and yes, it transcends this particular election. Will we – as Catholics – be able to regain a significant voice in American conservatism? I say "regain" because sadly – at the crossroads we  now find ourselves, I believe we have already lost it. (Hanging head, sorry to be the pessimist).

     

    JohnCWalker – nice to see you here!

  • Guest

    Mary, Well put. Your article is not about Huckabee or any other candidate. The article speaks clearly about the challenge facing social conservatives, the so-called "values" voters, because both major political parties have moved to the left.

    The talk (or is it spin) has already started about Governor Romney being the "conservative" standard bearer in 2012, when his credentials have not been accepted social conservatives in 2008. Republican economic conservatives are attempting to redefine "conservative" to exclude social conservatives, considering us a political liability as the electorate is moved to the left by a secular media.

    Thank God for Dr. Dobson, other evangelicals, and the few Catholic bishops who are willing to speak out on behalf of morality and the need for values candidates in the political process. But, the majority of Christian denominations, and I include the Catholic church, are silent on the moral issues that have a bearing on the 2008 election.

  • Guest

    Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to God's Mercy. Kent C. Bois

    Huckabee is a neo con of the Bush persuasion and will sell us out just as he did.

    His Pro Life position is a joke.

  • Guest

    Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to God's Mercy. Kent C. Bois

    "And Paul is all for inviting the terrorists right back onto our front porch. The best thing for Ron Paul would be to do a tour of duty in Iraq."

    That is the most rediculous thing I have read in a while. It betrays complete ignorance of Ron Paul. He would make sure our military was strong and properly outfitted which it is not at this time. Our troops are stretched to thin with epuipmnet that is breaking down. He did do a tour of duty and has served our country. His non intervention policy is constitutional and would remove our troops from harms way that is both  unnecesary and unconstitutional. Congress never declared war! And all the reasons that supposedly existed for invading Iraq never existed. No WMD no Obama etc. He did vote to go after Obama after 9\11 and he has ideas that would probably actually accomplish that mission which no one els has.

  • Guest

    How can anyone that reads this article respond with such anger and hatred? What has happened to Catholics that they have become so bitter and ugly? It seems that too many good people have immersed themselves in the "conservative" radio talk-show manure of insults and insinuations. I think everyone should fast from talk radio for Lent so we can have an honest conversation with humility and respect.

     

    Mike Huckabee is being thrown under the bus and trampled on for not attacking his enemies who have not attacked him. It is outrageous that people think there is some sort of colusion when candidates refuse to become viscious against their competition. The disallusioned Romney supporters are beginning to sound more and more like the crowd who shouted, "Give us Barabbas!"

     

     

  • Guest

    There's no Washington insider who truly represents Catholic values and doctrinal philosophy like former Sen. Rick Santorum. Not Brownback, not Huckabee, no one.

    Sen. Santorum is intimately familiar with the political process, and every one of the personalities running for presidential office. Last I checked, he was standing right behind Mitt Romney on the podium, because he knew as well as I, Mitt would have put two or more pro-life justices on the Supreme Court. Now we get to watch the dems put two or more fanatics like Ruth Bader Ginsburg there. 

    Btw Mary, I'm the first one who talked about the difference between classical liberalism and liberals here, so you owe me a shout out. Laughing

  • Guest

    "How can anyone that reads this article respond with such anger and hatred? What has happened to Catholics that they have become so bitter and ugly? "

    Kirsten, how do you know that writer is Catholic?? Catholics are the only ones to use the web?? Doesn't make sense…

  • Guest

    I have an article about that subject in the CE archives that goes back 6 or 7 years, but I'm still glad to give you a shout out.

  • Guest

    Dear zephyr424,

     

    Considering the fact that this article was published solely on a Catholic website, would it not seem obvious that someone with this as their homepage would be Catholic? Either way, that was not the point. The venomous responses were certianly not Christian.

  • Guest

    Oh for Pete's Sake…

    Look, BOTH McCain and Huckabee have Pro-Life voting records.  Don't take my word for it, see here

    http://www.ontheissues.org/John_McCain.htm

    http://www.ontheissues.org/Mike_Huckabee.htm

    I am all for spirited debate, but for cryin' out loud…let's stick to the facts, PLEASE.

  • Guest

    Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to God's Mercy. Kent C. Bois

    Let me put a few things together care of Chuck Baldwin. I will start with McCain and then move to Huckabee.

    " Republicans have come to accept Big Government, runaway federal spending, the Welfare State, the Warfare State, the Nanny State, empire-building, gargantuan trade and budget deficits, warrantless eavesdropping, the loss of 4th Amendment rights, ad infinitum, ad nauseam."

    "Make no mistake about it: the establishment wants one of its own to succeed George Bush. In order for that to happen, they must manipulate the primaries to ensure that, no matter who wins in November, one of their fellow elitists will still wield power in Washington, D.C. On the Democratic side, both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama fit the bill. And on the Republican side, John McCain is the ultimate insider."

    "A long-standing member of the Council on Foreign Relations (CFR), John McCain will pursue the goals and ambitions of the globalists with a vengeance. As Pat Buchanan said recently, "John McCain will make Dick Cheney look like Gandhi." Buchanan is right on with that prediction."

     And now for the clincher so to speak.

    "Then there is Mike Huckabee: the candidate to whom the evangelical George Bush robots have gravitated. Huckabee is every bit the Big Government liberal that is John McCain. In fact, Huckabee and McCain have developed a very close friendship, according to numerous sources. Many are even predicting that Huckabee will be McCain's running mate, in order to dupe evangelicals (Added by Kent, and prolife Catholics I might add) into accepting the McCain candidacy. (I have been saying this myself for months. Chuck Baldwin) Even Rob Schenck said this about Huckabee: "After careful and prayerful consideration, I have concluded that an evangelical vote for Mike Huckabee is a vote for John McCain, and a vote for John McCain will be a disaster for this country."

    Another line of thought.

    "Furthermore, the capitulation and compromise of principle by the Religious Right has also significantly sealed the death warrant of conservatism within the GOP. For the sake of not offending George Bush or losing whatever seat at the table the various leaders of the Religious Right felt they had, their spirit of resistance waned to the point that the very name "Christian Conservative" has lost all meaning, not to mention power."

    A religous right that Huckabee is supposed to represent the best of all the candidates. If the R. Right has capitulated what do you think that says about Huckabee?

    Last piece of puzzle.

    " Add to that question the fact that there is only one true conservative/constitutionalist who made it to the Republican primaries: Congressman Ron Paul. And virtually the entire media and political establishment pummeled Congressman Paul to the point that his limited success in the race can be categorized as nothing short of miraculous.

    Ron Paul has been misrepresented from almost every source most Americans get their inforamation from.

    Huckabee's supposed prolife stance, like George Bush's, is a carrot on a stick! We were betrayed once but please not again.

    For more solid information. http://www.chuckbaldwinlive.com/c2008/cbarchive_20080208.html

    From this article we see that McCain will go on to receive GOP nomination and that Huckabee will accept a VP.

    The lack of character in both of these candidates is appalling no one is perfect but there is a limit and both of these men are way past it.

  • Guest

    Gov. Huckabee  is the ideal candidate for many Catholics.  He is what their hearts have been desiring  for 25 years – a pro life  Democrat.  He is a capable articulate campaigner for his cause.  He just is not a republican or a conservative – that does not mean he isn't a fine person – but let's not kid ourselves – he is a pro life Democrat – pure and simple.  Make your decision based on that reality. 

    Hip problem is that he has forgotten he isn't running for President… he is running for the nomination of the Republican Party. Abandoning several of the core principles of the party wont be very successful with party loyalists.

  • Guest

    We had a chance with Romney for real pro-life work.

    HUH?  Well, I can make one guess that I'm sure I'm right on.  You do not live in the state of Massachusetts. 

    I am open to people not being in support of Huckabee for one reason or another.  Same as with other candidates.  But with an assertion such as the quote above, I have to assume that the asserter did not do the "research" that same asserter insists others do. 

    As for Ron Paul, he has stated over and over that if the abortion issue was no longer at the federal level, but left up to the states…and the states voted to keep abortion legal…he would have no problem with that.  But I have a problem with that.  Imagine the slavery issue being left up to the states.  Oh yeah…it was…and it took a president to nationally insist on the end of slavery. 

    Unfortunately, I have no candidate that I can 100% back.  McCain's voting record for pro-life is not bad.  However, he fully supports embryonic stem cell research.  So the voting record isn't the whole story either.

    I'm beginning to see things as JimAroo just said.  A 100% pro-life democrat (think over 50 years ago) is looking most hopeful. 

  • Guest

    Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to God's Mercy. Kent C. Bois

     

    "As for Ron Paul, he has stated over and over that if the abortion….  

     

    That's why He proposed the following.

    In Congress, I have authored legislation that seeks to define life as beginning at conception, HR 1094.

    I am also the prime sponsor of HR 300, which would negate the effect of Roe v Wade by removing the ability of federal courts to interfere with state legislation to protect life.

    HR 1094 would do it.

    His pro life stance is impecable his tactics are Constitutional.

  • Guest

    As a Catholic voter the only candidate I’m comfortable with is Mike Huckabee.  That having been said, I’ve respectfully considered what others have written about all of the candidates.  Their positions help shape my own.  I agree entirely with what Mary wrote and am disgusted by the vitriol that supporters of other candidates have used in their responses.  If these are the best reasons they can muster to support these their candidates, its no wonder they are losing!  Catholicism is built on Reason and Logic; let's use it this year!

  • Guest

    Wake up please!

    "As an OB/GYN doctor, I’ve delivered over 4,000 babies. That experience has made me an unshakable foe of abortion. Many of you may have read my book, Challenge To Liberty, which champions the idea that there cannot be liberty in a society unless the rights of all innocents are protected. Much can be understood about the civility of a society in observing its regard for the dignity of human life."

    Dr. Ron Paul

  • Guest

    HR 1094 would do nothing to protect babies in states that did not outlaw abortion — think Dred Scott.  Could we exist half pro-life and half pro-abort anymore than we could half slave and half free?

  • Guest

    Gov. Mike Huckabee is the only candidate running for the presidency who has fully, clearly and consistently been Pro-Life and Pro-Family throughout his public career.

     

    Please research Ron Paul!!!  Also look into Huckabee.  He is not pro-family as far as foreign relations and individual rights are concerned.  He has named Richard Haas the president of The CFR (Council on Foreign Relations) as one of his foreign policy advisors.  The CFR's goal is globalization, one world government, etc.  Haas wrote in a paper that individual states need to give up their sovereignty for the whole.  This is not pro-family, Christian, or Catholic.  

     

    ELECTABILITY-Ron Paul is electable.  If everyone who said "He's not electable so I won't vote for him" actually voted for him he would win.  Even without their votes he CAN win.  Study the political process.  It's not about popular votes.  Its about delegates.  Now with Romnney, Rudy and Thompson gone those delegates are up for grabs.  

    It's also about doing what is right.  Not what might be better or the lesser of the evils of Obama/Hilary.  Ron Paul is consistent, truthful, and not owned by anyone.  His message is timeless and will prevail, eventually.  This REVOLUTION is spreading like wildfire!!  JOIN UP!!  http://ronpaul.meetup.com/  100,000 plus members and growing!!  He has more meetup members than ALL of the dem and Rep combined.  They have doubled since October!!

     

    In Christ's Peace

    K.G. 

  • Guest

    I notice you did not address the issue of turning abortion back the states.

  • Guest

    Let's face it folks… no matter who ends up in White House, we're screwed.  If you haven't done it by now, it's time to start putting your trust in the Lord and not in the government.  God Bless!

  • Guest

    To JimAroo-

     

    Huckabee a Democrat?

     

    You are kidding me!

     

    Since when does a Democrat pledge to:

     

    Seal the border with Mexico

    Eliminate the IRS and your Income Taxes

    Pledge NO AMNESTY to illegals

    Pledge to Pass a Human Life Ammendment

    Support the 2nd ammendment

    AGAINST embryonic stem-cell research.

     

    This sounds like a conservative, Republican to me. I do not think those are Obama's or Hillary's platforms.

     

     

  • Guest

    Since I'm still confused by my own research, I refuse to be drawn into the inflamed rehetoric.  But, I do have something to add.  Weeks ago, a poster on CE offered a prayer that I have prayed daily:

    "Lord, give us the leader we need, not the one we deserve".

    Add to that this thought from Ps. 125: "Let not the scepter of the wicked rule over us, lest the hands of the righteous turn to evil".

    Some of us have been praying for the 2008 Presidential Election for the last 1,223 days.  We have 240 days to go.  I propose that we begin NOW to beg God for a miracle.

    Since "no" is a valid answer, I propose we likewise be prepared to beg for the grace we will surely need to live in the End of The Great Experiment.

  • Guest

    Wow- I was feeling pretty good when I read the article. I thought it was great.And my family and I came to the conclusion on our own that Huckabee is the best "Catholic"– glad to see that some really sharp thinkers agree!  

  • Guest

    Wrong, Wrong, Wrong.

    While I agree with the "hierarchy of values" point made in this article, Mary seems to be "crafting an argument" that the solution to the culture of death is a political one… Defining the hierarchy of moral values is one thing, applying it an effective way is tougher than it looks.

    Politics is the "art of the possible," not the ideal, no matter how purely moral and ethical the ideal is. While I laud a candidate who will use the bully pulpit to try to lead us in the direction of the culture of life, the politics of death emerged from a culture of death, and the politics of life will only emerge from a culture of life ("government of the people, by the people, for the people." and "people get the government they deserve.") The statement that he will use the bully pulpit "to change hearts and minds" is both arrogant and naive. Presidents don't unharden peoples hearts, GOD DOES, and only God will end the culture of death (perhaps you should consider Lincoln's attempts to use the bully pulpit to change hearts and minds – did not work too well for him as I recall my history).

    Electing the right candidates for office is no substitute for prayer, fasting, penance and authentic lives that support life. I realize that Mary probably knows this, but this article, in my opinion, suggests a distorted view of the entire spectrum of effective Pro-Life activity. I am disappointed with the way Pro-lifers seem to want to solve this problem on the cheap, with no personal sacrifice, no showing up at local marches, no willingness to stick your neck out at school/the office, etc., etc. Talk, even well-reasoned argument, is cheap – get with the program.

    And one more thing – yes, the economic policy positions of the candidate are important, because bad economic policy undermines family stability and facilitates so much of the bad behavior that the culture of death promotes. The "quality" and "purity" of one's Pro-Life position is not the only things that matters.

    In my opinion, yes, Huckabee is a complication; he is not much of a candidate.

    Jim – Billings, MT Cry

  • Guest

    Mary

    Congratulations on a great artice. You always have thoughtful contributions.

    Reading your artice I was reminded of Cardinal Newman.

    Even when I do not fully agree with you I am encouraged by your commitment to the Church.

    God bless,

    NoelFitz.
    _________________________________________________
    In necessariis, unitas; in dubiis, libertas; in omnibus, caritas.
    _________________________________________________

  • Guest

    Mankind will not have peace until it turns with trust to God's Mercy. Kent C. Bois

     

    "Catholicism is built on Reason and Logic; let's use it this year!"

    I am, that is why I have seen through Huckabee and his pretend conservativism. His pro life position is a carrot on a stick as I said earlier.

    We will not get a pro life nation with Huckabee as president!

    We will get more taxes, more federal government, less personal freedom, more immigration (leagal and illegal), and more war just like Bush.

  • Guest

    Should I start an account to save up for the Brownback 2012 campaign?

  • Guest

    Mary: Certainly more babies would be saved if Roe v. Wade were overturned and the power to legislate returned to the states.

    Dr. Paul is absolutely right when he asserts that those powers that were not specifically given to the federal government are to be retained by the states … this is the Catholic principle of subsidiarity, and one of the many reasons Dr. Paul is in fact the most "Catholic" candidate (http://www.acton.org/publications/randl/rl_article_200.php)

    Those who still doubt his foreign affairs policy should take the time to actually READ it. "A Foreign Policy of Freedom" made me a "Paul Girl."

    Heidi Hess Saxton

  • Guest

    Jim it isn't either/or – it is both/and.

    It isn't either politics OR culture; it is both politics AND culture.

    The law has a pedagogical function.

    When Huckabee says "bully pulpit," I am sure, given his background, that it is the pulpit part of the phrase, not the bully part that he is most relating too. I am sure he would be the first to agree with much of what you are saying.

    Heidi, I agree that more babies will be saved if we return the issue of abortion to the states.  That is not my point.  My point is that a state does not have the right to deprive any person of life without due process.  Returning the issue to the states will not outlaw abortion in this country.  If one believes, as I am sure you do, that the unborn are persons, then they deserve the protection of the law.

    My further point is that when it came to another fundamental matter of right and wrong — slavery — this country tried to go the route of allowing the states to choose.  For a long time there were different states in which the same person could be considered free and protected by the law and others where he could be considered the property of another. That is why I said that returning the issue to the states will do nothing to protect the lives of the unborn IN THOSE STATES that continue to allow legal abortion. The Catholic principle of subsidiarity DOES NOT apply in this case because as the Catechism (1902) says, I think quoting Aquinas: 

    A human law has the character of law to the extent that it accords with right reason, and thus derives from the eternal law. Insofar as it falls short of right reason it is said to be an unjust law, and thus has not so much the nature of law as of a kind of violence.

    Huckabee supports a Human Life Amendment to the Constitution. This would extend the constitutional protection (not to be deprived of life without due process) to the unborn. While I agree that Roe v Wade should be overturned and I realize that that would return the issue to the states for the time being, I also recognize that it cannot stop there and we can never say that the states have the right to regulate this matter either way.

    The only purpose of returning it to the states is to stop federal interference with the right of the state to protect the unborn, but that has NOTHING to do with the Catholic principle of subsidiarity, because the federal government SHOULD intervene if a state makes a law allowing abortion. At that point the federal government would have as much obligation (were things rightly ordered) to intervene as it would have today if your state were to suddenly decide to reinstitute slavery.  While it is true that in principle the Constitutional provision that powers not explicitly given to the federal government are retained by the states and the people coheres with the Catholic principle of subsidiarity, its application to the question of abortion is no more correct than to the issue of slavery.  Just as all American citizens, regardless of what state they reside in are protected by the US Constitution from slavery, so they should also be protected from abortion.  I actually think that they are already so protected, but that the problem is the recognition of their humanity. That was essentially the problem with slavery also. It took an amendment to the Constitution to explicitly extend to all persons a right that really was already implicit in the language of the Constitution. It seems that the same is true for the unborn.

  • Guest

    I am an Arkansan, so I speak with some experience.  First of all, Mike Huckabee does not represent 100% compatability with Catholic teaching on sexuality.  He does not condemn in vitro fertilization, artificial insemination or artificial birth control.  I do credit him for sponsoring the Covenant Marriage License, but this still permits divorce for grounds.  He does not condemn remarriage after divorce, so let's get real about his pro-life stance.  Only the Catholic Church is consistently pro-life, and Mr. Huckabee is assuredly not Catholic.  Furthermore, his policies on education and economic development are at serious odds with Catholic social teaching.  His answer to the loss of industrial jobs and low skilled jobs is to make everyone take Algebra II and go to college.  On Super Tuesday, I voted for Dr. Paul, and I have a clear conscience, but very little else to show for it.  I find this a very interesting election year, but like the Chinese, I would rather live in uninteresting times.

    rweiner

  • Guest

    Mary Kochan,

    Thank you & bless you for this wonderful article!  I can't tell you how much I appreciate it!

     

    The only thing that I find more disturbing than the vitriol and slander that I have seen relentlessly hurled at Mike Huckabee by those who oppose him is the devout Catholics who have unquestioningly accepted it.

     

    While I don't doubt dierdrew's sincerity, I do question his or her research.  When I was considering supporting Huckabee as a candidate, the first thing I did was google all the negatives I could find on him.  Everything that was being said against him tracked back to people who had a vested interest in his downfall. 

     

    Now I'm not about to claim that the man is a saint either - but like someone else said, if we wait for the perfect candidate, we'll never find someone worthy of our vote!!

     

    For those who want to canonize Romney, there is a good reason why he is so highly disliked by his fellow politicians (notice how few governors came out to support him – highly unusual).  I strongly suggest you follow the money – not just his, but also that of his high finance friends.  For example, the Club for Growth, one of Huckabee's most vocal critics (& chaired by one of Huck's political opponents from AR) is being generously funded by Romney & his financial friends. 

     

    And for those suggesting that Huck split the conservative vote rather than Romney, I challenge you to back that up because I have posted several times on CE with polls that show that Huck has been siphoning far more votes from McCain than Romney & , without Huck, it was McCain that would have fared much better.  (Not only that but the polls also showed that Romney had the highest negatives of ANY candidate in the general election & could not possibly beat the Democrats' nominee)

     

    Additionally, the Wall Street Journal had an article showing the candidates' largest contributors – Huckabee is the only one with NO corporate special interests.  Comparing him to Bush is ludicrous – The lobbyists, the wall street elite & the political wheeler dealers have virtually no hold on him – is it any wonder that they are terrified of having him win? 

  • Guest

    Mary – Jim again – agreed – my concern that in going for the candidate that is most closely aligned with the Catholic approach will derail the, as much as I have to say it, the incremental approach where we seem more likely to progress closer to political support of the culture of life. Senator Brownback endorsed McCain when he dropped out; his interview can be read at:

    http://insidecatholic.com/Joomla/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=2327&Itemid=48&limit=1&limitstart=0

    Acknowledging that with God all things are possible, I do not think Huckabee (or for that matter Ron Paul) are electable. Jim – Billings, MT

  • Guest

    I listened to Fox Sunday today (our TV is broken so there isn't any picture) and heard Brit Hume say that those on the right (by which he meant, really, pro-life and pro-marriage people) should get off McCain's back and "let him do what he needs to do" to win the general election, that is, let him move to the center. (That would of course be the same center that was the far left just a few years ago.) We are supposed to line up like good sheople and vote for him, no questions asked and no right to hold his feet to the fire. I really wanted to slap that man.

  • Guest

    Fix the picture mkochan, then you can slap him and a few others. It's the electorate that always gets slapped. This time more so then ever. This morning in Church I saw a Hillary coat button. I'm sure she went up to Communion that way. That's sad.

  • Guest

    My, my goral, were you cruising in the Carribean this weekend?  It's taken you a while to get in on the fray!

    Regarding political coat buttons: 4 years ago, on a snowy South Carolina Sunday morning a (distant) acquaintance of  mine paraded into church, sans coat, wearing a 4 inch "coat button" promoting Wes Clark.  Shocked and dismayed I spent much of mass asking the Blessed Mother what to do about this.

    After mass I went up to the woman and gently asked, "Did you know that Wes Clark is pro abortion?"

     Response, "No, he's not, he's pro choice."

    I reply, "Did you know he's quoted as saying, 'Life begins with the mother's choice.'?"  

    She adamantly stuck to her position.  At last my 9 year old daughter said, "So, you think it's okay to kill unborn babies?"

    Dumbfounded, Christine bumbled " I didn't say that…"

    Three more times my daughter, like a pit bull at the jugular declared, "So, you think it's okay to kill unborn babies!"

    The encounter ended with yet another Catholic, the lector for the day and leader of the Middle School Youth Group who was signing people up for the Disciples in Mission (otherwise known as DIM) program, interupting our conversation and vociferously supporting abortion.  

    Finally I asked, "So you think I should be able to have an abortion."

    Reply: "Yes, if you wanted to.  It's your right."

    I was 32 weeks pregnant with my son at the time.  He was born on the Feast of the Annunciation.

    I left the gathering space proclaiming in a loud voice,  "Blessed are they who are persecuted for righteousness sake!  I will never stop fighting for the unborn!"

    My husband, not a poet, observed the spectacle at a distance unbeknown to me.  He went home and wrote a poem, for the first time since high school, where he called described the scene as,

    "A mother, fighting for the life of a child–not her own.

     A greater stoning was never seen…" 

    I have no regrets over the heated scene, only sadness that fellow communicants could actively support killing of innocents.

    My daughter's passion continues to evangelize me.  God works in mysterious ways.

    PS She'll be 14 tomorrow on Our Lady of Lourdes feast day.  Please pray for her. 

  • Guest

    Regarding why the Huckabee campaign is contesting Washington's results, I just found the following comment at an online paper in WA –
    http://www.thenewstribune.com/news/local/story/279477.html

    Deja vu, anyone?

    Huckabee and Paul railroaded in Pierce County
    Submitted by BrianDavis on February 10, 2008 – 9:50am.

    My wife was flabbergasted and incensed yesterday as she and the other non-McCain supporters in her precinct were shut out of the process by the precinct committee officer. He totally ignored the caucus procedures at the District 28 caucuses held at Lakes High School in Lakewood. He swiftly and secretively pushed through his slate of four McCain delegates without discussion, and passed over all local delegate candidates who didn't write 'McCain' on their preference sheet. There are more details, but I don't want to ramble. She lodged a complaint with Party HQ, and with Huckabee's state and national campaigns. This morning there's a brief TV news announcement stating Huckabee is not conceding Washington due to alleged improprieties in the Pierce County caucuses.

  • Guest

    Elkabrikir, I'm very impressed by your daughter.  God bless her for being able to stand up to misguided "Catholics".

  • Guest

    We were, in our small way involved with the St. Jude telethon a good part of the day. It is all about the children and life but not the Hillary way.

  • Guest

    Goral, thanks for your good works.

    solagratia…I'm just shocked (not!)

    Claire: Jeffrey and Annaliese should have shared a cup of tea, I mean milk, at that hour 

  • Guest

    Yeah, it would be great if we could get them together (at a civilized hour, that is!).

  • Guest

    Claire,

    at 10wks I think she MIGHT be getting into a schedule for nights.  She falls asleep nursing around 9:30.  I put her in her cradle.  She sleeps until about 3 AM  then I nurse her in bed until 6;00…then I"m up. But, last night I nursed her out of bed at 3:00 and put her back in her cradle.  She actually slept there until about 6:30 when I nursed her again.  She slept in the bed until 8;30  (I was already up and about).

    I really hope this will become a habit…I'm wearing out and then my mood starts to slip.  If I don't watch it I know I'll start to feel depressed….all from exhaustion.  (I can't nap during the day anymore…or only rarely)

    I hope you're adjusting to motherhood well.  NO wonder St Paul says mothers are sanctified through their vocation. 

  • Guest

    I totally love you guys.  Whenever we get bogged down in petty political stuff you elevate our discussion by bringing us back to the really important subject — mothering!

  • Guest

    Wow, Elkabrikir!  She's doing great at night!  Jeffrey does quite well, too. He's so little that I set my alarm to make sure that he doesn't sleep through a feeding.  He has 3-4 hour stretches.  He doesn't have a regular bedtime yet, though.  It depends on when his last feeding of the day is.  Last night it happened to be 9pm, so he went to bed earlier than usual.  The best thing is that after his early morning bottle, he goes back down till anywhere between 7 am and 9 am!  I rarely nap during the day, because when he's napping I try to get as much done as I can.  (I don't do much when he's awake, because he's still too small for the front pack.  He would probably be fine if I set him down, but I feel that I should be holding him when he's awake.)

     

    Mary, sorry to change the subject!  You can see that I have a one-track mind these days! 

  • Guest

    Well, claire, you've got the exact right mindset in wanting to hold him.  I only put Annaliese down when I absolutely have to.  It is a privilege to hold her….she'll be grown up too soon.  In fact she's in my arms now latched on nursing/sleeping.

    I'm excited for you.  The first baby is such a joy!

    …..you never know what God has planned for you……..

     

    Also, I'm thrilled at your lawyer brother's postitive response and his monetary help.  Don't forget the tax benefits either (credits for adoption! If Jeffrey is considered 'special needs' you could get more.) 

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