Lifesite has a great article examining the question of whether or not Catholics who vote for Obama may receive Communion. H/T Pewsitter. This paragraph from (then) Cardinal Ratzinger is a great affront to liberal Catholicism which consistently tries to support pro-abortion candidates like Obama because of the flawed reasoning that he is against us helping Iraq regain stability or that he or someone else is against the death penalty:
"Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia," explained the document. "For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia."Which is what I've said several times, the death penalty and or war are nowhere near the gravity of the abortion issue. You can only vote for a pro-abortion candidate if you have proportional reasons; otherwise you're guilty of formal cooperation with grave evil and thereby ineligible to receive Communion. For those Catholics lacking the reason to figure out that death penalty & war (at least in this instance) do not suffice as proportional reasons, Ratzinger has spelled it out for you.
Now, if America was involved in a war in which we had invaded a country for no reason and were ruthlessly killing its citizens, that might be a different story. But the reality is completely different. We have engaged in a war several years ago, the war is over and we have given power back to the occupied territory (first time in history that's happened without a revolution). We are now engaged in rebuilding the country and stabilizing the security there. There is no war to protest anymore! So with that out of the way, the only other issue is capital punishment. While Ratzinger makes it clear here that the death penalty is not completely ruled out in all cases for Catholics (the Catechism agrees), even if it was; we're still talking only a handful of deaths per year for this and all of these are guilty criminals. This cannot by any mutilation of reason be considered a proportional reason to vote for a politician who would gladly allow the mass infanticide we call abortion.
I'm not endorsing McCain as if he's a super candidate. I would have hoped for someone like Brownback. There is a time for "voting one's conscious" but there is also a time where "voting one's conscious" would likely mean electing the worst possible candidate. Unfortunately, no one is electable against Obama except McCain and so not voting for McCain is only helping Obama get into the office.
The problem with being too particular about the candidate is that we're not electing a saint, we're not nominating the candidate for sainthood. We're picking the best candidate to run the country. They needn't be perfectly Catholic in their doctrine and they probably aren't going to be! It's hard to get very far in politics while adhering to Catholic doctrine these days. But we need to put our duty to protect innocent lives above any political idealism.
Of course Bush isn't completely pro-life, and if we had voted against him on those grounds? If he hadn't been elected, the pro-life movement would be considerably set back now. Bush vetoed several culture of death bills and blocked federal funding for ESCR and got 2 pro-life justices on the supreme court. That's major. One more would be enough to overturn Roe V Wade. That's not going to happen if Obama gets elected.
Ok. Enough politics, just my two cents.