FROM THE PRESIDENT'S KITCHEN TABLE
Election Day is upon us and I'm still unsure how I'm going to vote. Gore is disqualified, no question. But, purists say we must support Pat Buchanan, the only pro-life candidate on the ballot. The second part of their statement is true
- Buchanan IS the only pro-life candidate. Calling Bush pro-life completely devalues babies conceived by rape or incest. Make no mistake about it, George W. Bush is NOT pro-life and is unlikely to challenge the status quo. He's a politician raised in a political family. Truth demands our being clear on that.
But having said that, is it morally permissible for a Catholic to vote for him as the "lesser of two evils" when a 100% pro-life candidate is on the ballot, but has virtually no chance of winning? The answer is yes. A Catholic may never cooperate with evil, we may not vote for Bush BECAUSE he is pro-abortion; we can, however, vote for him for the good we hope he will do: sign legislation limiting abortion, restrict funding, choose strict constructionists for the Supreme Court, and prevent Al Gore's advancement. On the other hand, supporting Buchanan, an eloquent defender of the right to life, sends a strong message to the Republican party that pro-lifers are not theirs for the taking. Bush has treated unborn children and their defenders like second class citizens
- invisible at his convention where he featured pro-abortionists, invisible in his campaign where he ducks every opportunity to defend life. Furthermore, if Buchanan gets 5% of the vote, the Reform Party will qualify for federal matching funds in the next presidential election. Establishing a pro-life alternative to the two major parties is a legitimate goal. So there's the dilemma, and pro-lifers can legitimately disagree on the correct approach.
I'll find my answer praying in front of the tabernacle. Is Bush a decent man like George Allen who, as governor of VA, staffed his administration with prolifers and James Gilmore who tried to save Hugh Finn amidst rabid criticism? Or will Bush sell his soul as president? God knows. Sometimes He's a purist -He chose Mary, the perfect instrument of His will; but He also chose Peter, a sinner. How does God want me to vote? I trust I'll know on November 7th.