U.S. National Priests’ Leader Says: Most Priests are Voting for Bush

WASHINGTON, November 1, 2004 ( - One of the United States’ most well-known Catholic priests said today that most priests will vote for President Bush in Tuesday’s election. Fr. Frank Pavone heads up several national organizations (Priests for Life, the National Pro-life Religious Council, and Gospel of Life Ministries) but made it clear that he was speaking in his personal capacity, and not as the representative of those groups.  “The President understands Christian moral values far better than John Kerry does. In fact, the President, though not Catholic, also understands Catholicism better. It is a religion that does not allow us to privatize human rights to the realm of personal belief. That is why Kerry is wrong when he refuses to protect the most vulnerable among us—children still in the womb—from the violence of abortion,” Fr. Pavone explained.  “I travel the country constantly, meeting with priests every day. They are disgusted with Kerry. He gives a bad name to the Catholic religion by creating the impression that one can be a Catholic and just throw key teachings out the window.”“I am not saying that everyone has to be a Catholic, nor am I saying that a President has to be one. I’m simply saying that if one claims to be a Catholic, then that person should adhere to what Catholicism teaches. Otherwise, have the integrity to say that you can no longer embrace that religion. But don’t try to have it both ways. That lack of integrity, furthermore, will spill over into other areas of life. And in the case of a President, that’s particularly troubling.”  jhw

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