AUSTIN, Texas, April 2, 2012 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A Catholic Texas state politician complained at a Planned Parenthood rally last month that “the far-right” had taken over the Catholic Church, pointing out as evidence the fact that a local bishop had disinvited the lawmaker from speaking at a parish due to her stance in favor of abortion and contraception.
Rep. Dawnna Dukes had been disinvited from speaking at Holy Cross Catholic Church in Austin, her home parish, where she had been slated to speak at a Black History Month celebration, according to a local report. “We avoid as much as possible any semblance of a church endorsing a particular candidate or a particular party,” Rev. Msgr. Michael Sis, the Vicar General of the Diocese of Austin, told KEYE TV.
Dukes, an 18-year veteran of the Texas legislature, has twice voted down an ultrasound bill for abortion-bound women, and has excoriated Republicans for attempting to repeal the federal health care law, under which the HHS birth control mandate has been issued, as an attempt to “roll back the clock on women’s health.”
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At a Planned Parenthood rally speech on March 13 unearthed by CatholicVote.org, Dukes elicited boos from the audience when she described being shut out from her family church “because I support contraceptives.”
“I’m not ready to make nice. I’m not ready to back down. I’m mad as hell,” said Dukes.
“We should be burning mad that the far-right would go to my Church and try to dictate what we can do. We should be mad that they would try to take away the rights that we have had – and the argument has been over for a very long time – to have the right to choose.”
The rally was orchestrated to promote funding for Planned Parenthood in the wake of Texas’ decision to cut funding to the abortion organization through the state Medicaid-run Women’s Health Program. After the Obama administration threatened Texas to include Planned Parenthood once more, federal officials gutted the entire program, prompting the state to file suit against the administration.