LA CROSSE, Wisconsin, October 26, 2004 ( – A lawyer for the Catholic diocese of La Crosse has been exposed as having made substantial contributions to pro-abortion political candidates.

James G. Birnbaum was one of two US lawyers employed by Catholic dioceses who refused to allow distribution of the Voters’ Guide produced by the lay apologetics organization, Catholic Answers. Birnbaum claimed that the “listing of issues is too narrow to pass legal muster” according to the provisions of the US tax code and would threaten the Catholic Church’s non-profit tax status.  Now, just days before the US presidential election, it has come to light that Birnbaum has been contributing to pro-abortion politicians since 1997 up to June of this year. According to public records uncovered by the Culture of Life Foundation, Birnbaum donated US $6,500 in total to Rep. Ronald Kind, a pro-abortion Democrat from Wisconsin. Kind scored 90% on Planned Parenthood’s Congressional Scorecard. Birnbaum’s most recent contributions to Kind were $1000 in March and another thousand in June.  Birnbaum donated smaller amounts to other pro-abortion politicians including $200 in 1998 to Wisconsin Senator Russ Feingold who received 100 percent approval from Planned Parenthood and $750 to Wisconsin Governor Jim Doyle who was the keynote speaker at two Planned Parenthood fundraisers.

Birnbaum and the diocese of La Crosse have declined to return phone calls from the Culture of Life Foundation who looked into the records of the donations. The diocese of La Crosse was headed until January of this year by Raymond Burke, the current Archbishop of St. Louis, who has led the US bishops’ criticisms of John Kerry and other pro-abortion “Catholic” politicians.

Almost eight months after Burke’s move, a new bishop has still not been appointed to the La Crosse diocese. Speculation in some quarters is that the church is having difficulty finding a candidate somewhat near the high caliber of its previous bishop Burke.  Culture of Life Foundation & Institute website:   Previous coverage:   ph


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