WDTPRS POLL about your intentions for the US midterm elections

Here is a WDTPRS poll intended for US citizens.

Given the way soon-to-be Card. Burke has been subjected to anti-Catholic reporting in the mainstream press (USAToday) and how he has been derided by the NCR (blog of a dissident woman religious), I think the best way that faithful Catholics can respond and, in a way “get even”, is to…


Moreover, vote in accordance with what Card. Burke explained.

You might even let the dissenters and anti-Catholics know what you did and why.

In the meantime, here is a WDTPRS POLL.

There could be other possible answers.  Perhaps these options won’t perfectly describe you.

Nevertheless, please pick the answer that BEST describes you.

Please explain your choice in the combox below with all possible civility and using your God-given ability to self-edit.

For the US midterm elections:

  • I am going to vote, and I will vote in harmony with the Church's teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke. (55%, 1,083 Votes)
  • I voted already/early and I voted in harmony with the Church's teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke. (30%, 586 Votes)
  • I know I will not vote. (6%, 113 Votes)
  • I don't know if I am going to vote, I am in harmony with the Church's teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke. (4%, 74 Votes)
  • I will vote but I think other social issues are important enough that I can't be a "one issue" Catholic, letting concern for abortion override my views about the poor, healthcare, social justice, e (3%, 67 Votes)
  • I voted already/early and Card. Burke's views didn't figure. (1%, 23 Votes)
  • I will vote and I, a Catholic, am in favor of abortion rights, limited or unlimted, equality for same-sex stuff, etc. I don't agree with Card. Burke. (1%, 16 Votes)
  • I vote, but I always vote strictly along party lines. I am unconcerned with Catholic teaching one way or another. (0%, 5 Votes)

Total Voters: 1,968

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About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

Fr. Z is the guy who runs this blog. o{]:¬)
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  1. Andrew says:

    I read literature that tells me where different candidates stand regarding these issues to help me decide who gets my vote.

  2. mvhcpa says:

    I generally vote straight ticket Republican, but around here (Georgia) that means you usually get the pro-life, pro-family candidate.

  3. Shadow says:

    Problem in my state is that no one seems to be truly pro-life. So I will either not go to vote or go and annul my vote completely.

  4. JohnE says:

    I’m a “one issue comes first” Catholic.

  5. priests wife says:

    I probably will opt out of the governor’s race- and focus of the props.

    I always vote but I HATE POLITICS!

    This is where my heart is right now- I don’t see Dem or Reps doing a thing about it

  6. Elizabeth D says:

    Before returning to the Catholic Church I was very involved with liberal/progressive politics. I had held “pro-choice” and pro gay rights views all my life and sincerely believed these were compassionate choices. These views came into very sharp conflict with my Catholic faith (sparks flew) and I came to realize that my politics was functioning like a competing religion, there was a true philosophical and moral incompatibility. I made a choice that Jesus was 100% more important to me, I disconnected from the political stuff, and was largely silent about these matters and listened with humility, trying to learn and understand what the Catholic Church says. I was surprised by what I learned, which was reasonable and based on an integral and beautiful vision of man and woman in the full dignity of their nature, and as image of God. I realized that the notions of love which had informed my previous views were very impoverished compared with the Love reflected in the Christian view.

    I haven’t voted since then however, I have been very apolitical. To state why as briefly as possible, I don’t feel comfortable about being obliged to be solely an abortion/marriage voter, and on the other hand I accept the judgement of the various Bishops who suggest it is a sin to vote for the candidates who defend or even promote abortion and who favor same sex marriage. I chose “I don’t know if I am going to vote, I am in harmony with the Church’s teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke.”

  7. andycoan says:

    The more I look into the candidates and their real positions, the less enthusiastic I feel about voting. There are no viable candidates who espouse *all* the teachings of our Church, so you end up settling for the lesser of evils.

  8. Martial Artist says:

    In late 2008, I experienced an answer to my prayers for God’s guidance, which answer was that I was to seek reception into the Catholic Church. The gist of that experience, which I experienced in a compelling and overwhelming realization, I was, at that time and for over six months thereafter, unable to put into words (rather a rarity for me).

    In the months that followed I read two quotations that gave me words to explain the major part of what I had seen revealed. First was this, cited in the featured article at the First Things web site on March 17, 2009, from Bl. John Henry Newman’s Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine:

    The most obvious answer, then, to the question, why we yield to the authority of the Church in the questions and developments of faith, is, that some authority there must be if there is a revelation given, and other authority there is none but she. A revelation is not given if there be no authority to decide what it is that is given. . . . If Christianity is both social and dogmatic, and intended for all ages, it must humanly speaking have an infallible expounder. Else you will secure unity of form at the loss of unity of doctrine, or unity of doctrine at the loss of unity of form; you will have to choose between a comprehension of opinions and a resolution into parties, between latitudinarian and sectarian error. You may be tolerant or intolerant of contrarieties of thought, but contrarieties you will have. By the Church of England a hollow uniformity is preferred to an infallible chair; and by the sects of England an interminable division. Germany and Geneva began with persecution and have ended in scepticism. The doctrine of infallibility is a less violent hypothesis than this sacrifice either of faith or of charity. It secures the object, while it gives definiteness and force to the matter, of Revelation.

    Second, around the end of 2009 was this from St. Anselm of Canterbury:

    Neque enim quaero intelligere ut credam, sed credo ut intelligam. Nam et hoc credo, quia, nisi credidero, non intelligam.

    Having taken more than six decades of my life to understand the importance of doing so, and having been received and confirmed into Holy Mother Church at Pentecost 2010, I no longer see any reason, need or justification to act other than in accordance with her teachings as closely as I am enabled to understand them through prayerful consideration and reflection. Therefore, “I voted already/early and I voted in harmony with the Church’s teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke” accurately expresses the way in which I have already voted by mail.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  9. guzmang1 says:

    On not wanting to be a, “One issue voter”. Would such people also say the same if all the positions of a particular candidate measured up to his/her own yet stated, “Yet I believe African Americans should not be allowed to vote”. Or, “Yet I believe all minorities, even American citizens, should leave the US and return via a process suitable to us.” Would these, “Not a one issue voter”, all other positions of the candidate acceptable and agreeable to them, vote for such a candidate? If not, WHY?

  10. I will vote on Election Day, and have carefully researched (and spoken to, where possible) each candidate for whom I will vote. As far as I have been able to determine I will not be voting for any candidate who is pro-abortion and/or pro-homosexual rights. Other issues are important to me as a citizen, but those two are my go-to issues when deciding how to vote in an election.

  11. Penta says:

    It’s New Jersey, so a truly acceptable candidate in my area is hard to find. None of that matters though, because the county for some reason didn’t send me the absentee ballot I permanently applied for. I’m disenfranchised by others’ stupidity.

  12. Christina says:

    I really wish Democrats would make my decision a tad harder. Voting all Republican because they’re pro-life and their Democratic opponents are pro-choice is so tedious. Come on, give me a challenge, people!

  13. markomalley says:

    Vote early, vote often.

    (Oh, wait. I’m not dead. And I’m not in Chicago right now
    Never mind)

  14. Angela C. says:

    I found out about a nifty site a few weeks ago that let’s the voters in New Mexico know how the politicians stand on Catholic issues; so far it looks like the Republicans are the ones who’ll be getting my vote. My husband and I will be using the info gathered from it to vote on Tuesday. Catholicsvotecatholic.com. If anyone from NM is reading, go check it out.

  15. danphunter1 says:

    I have reearched them all and there is no one who is running for government in the 4th district of North Carolina who is pro-life.
    There is s gentleman named Bill Randle in the 23rd district who is running for Congress and is prolife.
    I wonder if I could write his name in?

  16. benedetta says:

    Where both the Republican and Democratic candidates for a given office are pro-choice, I always vote the Right to Life party candidate.

  17. guzmang1 says:

    To those who say, “I am not a one issue voter”. If I was a candidate and you agreed with a great majority of my political positions yet said to you, “When elected I will attempt to purge our voting lists of all African-Americans”. Or, “When elected I will seek getting rid of all minorities, be they citizens or not, deported and have them go through a very rigorous re-entry process”. Would you vote for me? If not, WHY?

  18. kittenchan says:

    It’s so annoying when people say faithful Catholics are single-issue voters, or only vote on “bedroom” issues. The fact is, we have priorities where life and family are first, and the rest come after. The problem is that the top prioity(ies) weed out SO MANY CANDIDATES that there are typically only 1 or 0 left.

    If there were 2 or more unmitigatedly pro-life candidates to choose from, THEN we can move on to priority 2 to choose between them. If there were two or more candidates who unmitigatedly supported pro-life, pro-family values THEN we can move on to health care, immigration, welfare, taxes, medical marijuana, etc to choose between them. It is the lack of options that makes us turn into something resembling single-issue voters. It’s a matter of principles; of priorities. The solution is to have an abundance of authentically pro-life candidates, so other (lesser) issues can come into play as well.

  19. Geoffrey says:

    As a monarchist, I generally do not vote. However, I have in the 2008 and 2010 elections, as there were some very close races here in California that, as a Catholic, I had to vote for (Proposition 8 in 2008 and Boxer vs. Fiorina in 2010). Sadly, many other candidates in this state were pro-abortion and so I had to be creative when it came to write-in candidates.

  20. gloriainexcelsis says:

    I vote through my understanding of the social Kingship of Christ the King, natural and supernatural laws. period. If I had no clear choice, I might abstain from voting. Luckily, I’m not faced with that this time.

  21. acroat says:

    We have not had good choice for gov in CA for several years. The present gov is a”Kennedy Republican” as I call him- not in union with Church teaching but often seen at
    St Monica’s… I pray the soon to be new Archbishop will influence things out here.

  22. MMD19 says:

    I think it is a telling representation that the WDTPRS poll currently shows that 26 voters are unsure if they will vote even though they are in harmony with the Church’s positions, while 24 voters are SURE that they will vote even though they are NOT in harmony with the Church’s positions.

    This is a perfect summary of what will go on in many races around the country this coming Tuesday. Liberals who intend to advance a pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, and anti-religious agenda will ascend to power on the backs of Catholic voters who are SURE that they will vote but who are UNSURE of what the Church teaches. And those voters will tilt elections because committed Catholics who are in unity with Church teaching will be unsure of whether to vote and or whether to stay home.

    Take this example: In the state of California, Carly Fiorina is running for U.S. Senate against Barbara Boxer. Boxer is the most liberal member of the Senate. She confidently runs ads supporting her pro-abortion agenda and denigrating her opponent for being pro-life. Carly Fiorina has run a steadfastly conservative campaign with regard to social issues. Her public positions are in keeping with Church teaching.

    This race will be decided by independents, the majority of which are currently siding with Boxer. They are confident that they will vote and they care nothing for the Church – or for any religion – or for sound moral teaching. They will return the most pro-abortion member of Congress to her coveted Senate seat.

    Catholics have an opportunity to vote their conscience at the polls and to swing races in favor of candidates whose positions are consistent with Church teaching. They have an opportunity to advance candidates who will uphold the sanctity of life and the sacredness of the marriage vow.

    How can a Catholic be “unsure” of whether to vote?

  23. ejcmartin says:

    Think it’s hard finding a pro-life candidate? Try voting in a Canadian election! That being said we used to have a wonderful pro-life MP, but sadly he retired and now we have the equivalent of a liberal Democrat.

  24. Supertradmum says:

    In Iowa, this Tuesday’s vote is very important. The judge who allowed same-sex marriage is up for re-election and thankfully, many Catholics are aware that they must vote “no” on the judges, all who are arch-liberals. If any of you are in Iowa, vote “no” across the board, against the pro-homosexual, anti-life agendas of those judges.

  25. teaguytom says:

    In PA, you have Catholic candidates for both Senate and Gov.. For senate, you have Sestak for the dems praising the JFK position on Catholicism and Toomey is hardline on pro-life issues. Definitely voting for Toomey. You have two Catholics for governor, though neither is 100% prolife. Onorato was asked in the diocesan newspaper about abortion and he skirted the issue. Sadly,Corbett has been pulling the “Sean Hannity” loophole. He says he is goes to mass and is devout, but thinks it’s ok to abort babies in the case of Rape/incest and life of mother. It didn’t help that he responded this was in the diocese of Harrisburg newspaper for everyone to see either. But clearly Corbett is the most conservative and Catholic of the two. Hopefully his pastor will or bishop will wake him up on the abortion issue.

  26. Fr Matthew says:

    It is very difficult indeed to find politicians who really are good on the main issues… One of our state political candidates said some clear truths, but then backed off and apologized when accused of being “intolerant” etc. etc… I’m afraid I’ll have to vote mostly for “lesser evils”.

  27. Brian Day says:

    I voted the first option.
    I pay closest attention to offices where the candidates can affect abortion/family policy (like the president, or senators who confirm supreme court justices). For offices where there is no possibility for setting these policies, I don’t look as closely at the candidates.

  28. Eoin Suibhne says:

    I voted: “I am going to vote, and I will vote in harmony with the Church’s teaching about the sanctity of life of the unborn, natural marriage, etc., along the lines explained by Card. Burke.”

    I’ve historically voted straight Republican but have come to realize that the GOP is practically worthless. Even so, I would never vote Democrat. These days I vote defensively, i.e., for the lesser of two evils/the candidate who will do the least damage.

    I long for a defender of life opposed both to wasteful spending, “free trade,:” and wars to “spread democracy.”

  29. Stvsmith2009 says:

    Even before becoming Catholic, I always have considered a politicians stance on abortion, and have consistently voted pro-life. In my opinion, if a politician will not defend the right to life of the most helpless and vulnerable, then they can not be trusted with defending anyone’s rights. I will not vote for anyone who supports euthanasia nor faux marriage either. And I am registered as “Unaffiliated” in case anyone is curious.

  30. jamie r says:

    Realistically, a legislator is going to have considerably more opportunities to vote on issues like taxes and the proper exercise of government power than on abortion or same-sex marriage. One wouldn’t, for instance, vote for a candidate who wanted to have the fourth ammendment repealed because removing the right not to be unreasonably searched would remove the penumbra in which is found the right to an abortion. Candidates to the legislature should be judged based on what legislators do. A candidate who isn’t going to govern well, or promote the proper exercise of state power and the rule of law while limiting the improper exercise of state power doesn’t suddenly become a statesman the minute he becomes pro-life, especially considering the likelihood he’ll ever have the opportunity to vote to ban abortion.

    That is, I don’t believe it’s inconsistent to vote in line with Church teaching and to not be a single-issue voter. It’s more important that we have legislators that legislate well, and though the best legislator would ban abortion, it isn’t clear to me that it is actually or necessarily the case that all ostensibly pro-life candidates are fit to be in government.


    You’re very close to seeing why people don’t want to be a one issue voter. Try reversing your example. If a candidate gets one issue right, even an immensely important one like banning abortion or state recognition of same-sex ‘marriage,’ but gets everything else wrong, would you still vote for that candidate? Suppose Hitler was in favor of banning abortion, would you vote for him? (I’m not saying that any pro-life candidates or voters are Nazis, but am using a deliberately extreme hypothetical).

  31. I am not affiliated with any political party, and I try, to the best of my knowledge and ability, to vote my faith. For where I live in SE Wisconsin, this election is easy.

    1) My Congressman is a pro-life Catholic (Paul Ryan). He gets my vote for re-election.

    2) My Senator (Russ Feingold) is as anti-life as he could possibly be — and in other issues, is so far left as to be considered radical. He is being opposed by a pro-life Lutheran, Ron Johnson. Johnson gets my vote — for many reasons.

    3) In the race for Governor, an openly anti-life, pro-embryonic stem cell, pro-late-term abortion “Catholic” (Tom Barrett) is being opposed by a 100% pro-life in all circumstances, small government Protestant (Scott Walker). In this race, I am voting my Catholic faith by supporting the Protestant candidate.

  32. bookworm says:

    I live in Illinois and voted early (but not often, only once, thank you).

    Our gubernatorial race, if you go on non-negotiable Catholic issues alone, is a no-brainer. Both the incumbent (Pat Quinn, a Democrat) and the challenger (Bill Brady, GOP) are Catholic; but, Quinn has clearly stated that he is pro-choice and has also promised to push a same-sex civil unions bill if he wins. Brady, a longtime legislator, has always been pro-life.

    That being said, I did have some qualms about whether Brady’s proposed fiscal policies are really workable or if he understands fully what he’s getting himself into (our state is a horrendous fiscal mess). On the other hand, Quinn has already PROVEN that he doesn’t know what he got himself into by serving as Blago’s lieutenant governor. Brady, at least, COULD still turn out to be competent or even very good (a la Chris Christie). For me the only two choices were, vote for Brady or don’t vote at all. In the end, I voted for Brady.

    A tougher decision was how to vote in the Senate race: Republican Mark Kirk vs. Democrat Alexi Giannoulias. Kirk is about as RINO as one can be — pro-abort, pro-ESCR, very liberal voting record as a Congressman. Plus he has run an atrocious campaign marked by repeated misstatments/lies about his military record and other matters. Alexi G., on the other hand, is an extremely liberal Dem, buddy of Obama and an alleged “mob banker” (too long to explain here).

    If either Kirk or Giannoulias had been far enough ahead in the polls that the outcome was pretty much certain, and I knew my vote was not likely to make a difference, I would probably have not voted for either one. However, this race is very close. Moreover, it is one of the close races that could determine whether or not the GOP takes over the Senate. So, with those two things in mind, I decided that I could not just sit back and allow a liberal Democrat to win, and I voted — very reluctantly — for Kirk as the lesser of two evils.

    For all other races save one, I voted Republican, or didn’t vote for anyone if I didn’t know enough about the various candidates. The one exception was a race for local sheriff, where I chose the Democrat because the incumbent Republican has had a LOT of very, very serious problems regarding jail management and other issues crop up on his watch — problems that have led to people dying in the local jail for lack of proper medical care or security. Since county sheriff’s don’t deal with abortion, same sex marriage, etc., and the Republican has demonstrated serious lack of competence, I figured it was OK to bend my “I am not voting for any Democrats until they stop being the Party of Death” rule in this instance.

    I did not have Abp. Burke’s statement in mind when I voted, in fact I didn’t even know about it at the time, but I would say I did vote in line with the principles he stated.

  33. catholicmidwest says:

    It’s very difficult to vote what the Church teaches because the American system doesn’t really offer choices that align with it. That said, I find that the Republicans more than the Democrats are closer to what the church teaches (ie abortion, gay issues, etc) most years.

    I’m an independent. And that’s the case because I’m a fairly primitive traditionalist in the old sense. My kids tease me about being “tribal,” in fact. I don’t believe most of the myths of modern life because I think most of them are advertising slogans, to be frank, and what remains are probably just the consequences of living with pernicious and sloppy modern habits.

    I’m a convert too. As a Catholic, I think the church has something very real to say to me about issues like abortion, murder and the like–they’re evil and expressly forbidden by scripture and tradition from way back. Ditto homosexuality. No discussion here. I know a tarpit when I see one.

    On the other hand, I think a lot of what “enlightened people” say about social justice and globalism is plain pure hogwash. And that goes double for people who claim the church has a lot of priorities in these areas. I scoff openly at papers written by the USCCB on wage equity and the like, for instance. It’s not their business, not because they don’t have a right to write about it. Anyone has a right to write anything legal. No. It’s because they wouldn’t know a working man’s paycheck if it bit them on the A$$, or the normal family priorities that go with it. They have no idea what they are talking about on such issues 99.99% of the time. And the church lays precious few claims that stick, to be honest, when it comes to such things. Why you might ask??
    a) Tradition doesn’t uphold all this nonsense.
    b) The church pays very low wages, AND IT SHOULD.
    c) Most of this talk is just modern concept sprawl and diarrhea of the jaws.

    Face it, most people can’t even manage to keep themselves out of routine trouble, ie keep their tools in their trousers and treat their families decently, providing for them and managing life, let alone getting all involved in the affairs of national and international “justice & peace.” I’m of the opinion that all that is a form of escapism, in fact, and people use it to keep from being accountable intellectually, morally & financially. It’s easier than doing what you should be doing.

    So, I vote with the church when I can. Barring that, I vote as closely in concept with the church as I can. I ignore claims that seem spurious and far-fetched. And I vote for political reasons, because being an old traditionalist (tribal as my kids might say), I have to protect myself and mine against the foe. It’s my duty.

  34. catholicmidwest says:

    PS, protecting yourself from the foe is a duty as surely as life’s breath, and don’t let anyone tell you any different.

    And Fr Z, you didn’t have a choice there in your poll for people like me. [And I think you’d be surprised how many of us there really are.]

  35. bookworm says:

    “If a candidate gets one issue right, even an immensely important one like banning abortion or state recognition of same-sex ‘marriage,’ but gets everything else wrong, would you still vote for that candidate?”

    If that candidate really does get EVERYTHING else wrong, or shows genuine, serious indications of being corrupt, incompetent, or mentally unstable, no, I would NOT vote for them.

    If they were running against someone who was aggressively pro-choice (I would define this as being endorsed by Planned Parenthood, NARAL, or Personal PAC, or actively seeking their endorsement), I would just not vote at all or go third party.

    If the “bad” pro-lifer were running against someone with a mixed or partially pro-life record — someone endorsed neither by Planned Parenthood nor by National Right to Life, but who was otherwise competent, had a record of being trustworthy, and likely would not make the abortion situation any worse than it already is — then, I might consider voting for the second candidate as a means to keep the first one from doing serious damage to the body politic AND prevent them from giving pro-lifers a bad name that would likely make it harder for them to be elected in the future. If you think about it, what good does it do to elect someone who says they are pro-life but clearly cannot be trusted?

    My point is that the negative moral duty NOT to vote for pro-abortion candidates doesn’t necessarily equal a positive duty to vote FOR all candidates who are or claim to be pro-life.

  36. catholicmidwest says:

    This is the American conundrum, bookworm. When a candidate is against abortion but has all manner of other things wrong with their reasoning, it means that their reasoning about abortion may well be incoherent too, and it may all come to nothing. Because of the nature of the class structure in America (and yes, we have one), it is possible for people who can’t remember which end of the toothbrush goes in their mouths to hold high public office (and high private office as well). Daddy owns the firm.

    That said, I can tell you, I often don’t vote FOR as much as I vote AGAINST. That’s just how it is, given the state of American politics. It’s necessary.

  37. DavidinWA says:

    There always seems to be an opposition portrayed between being for unborn babies, natural marriage, etc and being concerned about the poor, social justice, etc.. If we follow Christ’s teaching through the Church (just as Card. Burke stated), then we can be consistent and supportive on all areas. I don’t let “concern for abortion override my views about the poor, healthcare, social justice..” because the Church’s teaching on those areas also causes me to vote against big government solutions to all these local, individual problems. Personal solidarity with the weak (whether the unborn or the poor) and subsidiarity demand that I, not some distant official using money forced from others, try to address the suffering by working at the level closest to the problem. So I don’t think there are many politicians on the pro-abortion side who are, even ignoring their views on abortion, actually putting forward a social justice platform that is in line with Christ’s teaching.

  38. MarkJ says:

    Any Catholic who does not vote in this election to support Catholic Truth will be complicit in the evil that will inevitably result if the Progressives maintain their stranglehold on this country. The killings of the unborn will continue unabated, and we will all be paying for it with our taxes, and in other ways as the Culture of Death perverts everything it touches. Then what? How could ANY Catholic not seize this opportunity to stand up for the unborn in our midst? We need to all take a firm and unrelenting stand against the supporters of the satanic killing machine called “Planned Parenthood”, an organization that is out to exterminate as many babies as they can, an organization that is following its founder’s desire to exterminate the undesirables in our society. Christ asks us to boldly proclaim the Gospel, to shout it from the housetops, to be a light for all on the mountaintop, to risk martyrdom if it comes to that… and some can’t bother to vote? Come on people, let’s start being courageous Christians again and take back our society – starting this Tuesday, one vote at a time.

  39. bookworm says:

    A further note on the one Democrat I did vote for: he appears to have run as a Democrat purely to provide opposition to the incumbent, and not out of any expressed sympathy or affinity for the Democratic party platform. He has police and military experience and his ideas for improving/reforming the sheriff’s department seem quite sensible. At the local level people may run as Democrats, Greens, Libertarians or independents for reasons that have nothing to do with the state or national party platform. If that is the case, then I don’t think they have to be automatically disqualified from consideration.

  40. bookworm,

    You make a very good point. Where I live in SE Wisconsin, the municipal and many county-level elections are non-partisan. It seems to me that there is a certain wisdom there.

  41. MarkJ says:

    I would vote for a Democrat if he or she were not a Progressive and were not pro-death. I would likewise vote against a Republican if he or she were a Progressive or were pro-death. Party affiliation is sometimes irrelevant – it’s the stand on particular issues that counts in the end.

  42. David Collins says:

    I’m not going to vote since I’m convinced that it makes no difference. One party can lead this country to hell as well as the other. (So that is what strong looks like.)

  43. catholicmidwest says:

    David Collins:

    One strategy is as good as the other, so I’m not taking either, even if I can manipulate it into getting at least part of what I want? Is that what you’re saying? Do you mean that in principle or as a practical strategy?

    Have you ever heard of Jean Buridan?

  44. mpalardy says:

    I think I’m with Jamie R on this one. First, invoking subsidiarity, I make it a point to vote only in the most local or regional of the elections, scrawling “none of these” in the write-in spaces for any race of a more national scope. Honestly, does it matter what my highway commissioner or county sheriff thinks about abortion or gay marriage? I’m selecting a civil functionary in these cases, not a priest or a professor, and these important issues are far removed from the functions for which I am selecting the most appropriate candidate. So, what constitutes non-negotiable morality does not necessarily constitute an across-the-board voters’ guide. Even in state office, I would imagine such things do not come up as often as issues concerning the budget, taxation, spending, and so forth. Moreover, those who trust the government for anything, even if it be virtuous, will surely have a rude awakening someday. It is I personally, and the culture I carry, and the Church in whose bosom I wish to remain, which will impart upon the next generation the precepts of virtue, moral reasoning and imagination, and a sense of the intrinsic worth and dignity of every human life, not some career politician or bureaucrat in some far-off capital. To resign our own claims for cultural or moral formation of the young to the state merely paves the way for totalitarianism.

  45. Girgadis says:

    I won’t vote for anyone in the executive or legislative branch of any level of government, who has actively worked to promote abortion and/or gay marriage. I would like to point out, however, that those candidates who have identified themselves as pro-life in Pennsylvania have not spent one cent of the hundreds of millions of dollars they’ve spent on advertising to declare themselves pro-life or pro traditional marriage. I have seen counter ads from either their opponents or the Democratic party accusing them of being “anti-choice”. It strikes me that if a candidate is truly committed to protecting the sanctity of life and of marriage, they ought not be ashamed to let people know that in their advertising and they should talk about what they intend to do about these issues. Rather, all I hear are negative attack ads that distort the truth and border on demagoguery, and this is from candidates of both persuasions. The whole political process needs to implode and be constructed all over again and it can start with putting an end to the obscene amounts of money it takes to get elected.

  46. frjim4321 says:

    I’m not a single-issue voter. With respect to abortion, I tend to vote for candidates whose policies would most likely result in FEWER actual abortions, thus I am not swayed by those who pay lip service to anti-abortion constituencies. Political rhetoric should be understood for what it is . . . it is results that matter. With regard to equal marriage rights, I certainly agree that we cannot possibly sacramentalize the marriage of two persons of the same sex. With regard to the constitutional issue of whether two adults of the same gender should be accorded the same protection under the law as opposite-sex couples, I think they do.

    With regard to political rhetoric, in my state neither party has proven to have an monopoly on the truth. Politifact has demonstrated that candidates of both parties lie, distort and quote out of context with reckless abandon. That’s why I’m not impressed with what candidates say about choice. I will vote for candidates whose actual policies (as opposed to what they SAY) will result in fewer actual abortions. Thus, if the economic policies of party X seem clearly to result in much higher rates of poverty and hopelessness, thus driving abortion rates higher, their anti-abortion speak does not move me whatsoever.

    All that being said, I’m grieving the retirement of George Voinovich. If half of the Republics out there had one half of his integrity and moral decency I might think of changing my party affiliation.

  47. Lirioroja says:

    I will vote because I believe it’s my civic duty, part of rendering unto Caesar what is Caesar’s. That said, living in NYC makes deciding who to vote for very stressful and nauseating for those of us who insist on voting in harmony with Church teaching. If I’m not voting against an unacceptable candidate I’m voting down a party line that most closely resembles Church teaching. If there are no acceptable candidates I deliberately spoil my ballot which I see as better than not voting at all. We’re voting (again) on term limits in NYC so I will be at the polls to vote for them (again). I have not decided which gubernatorial or senate candidate I will vote for of if I’ll vote in those races at all. I may do what I did last year and vote down the Conservative Party line since in New York the Republicans are no better than the Democrats. However that means voting for Carl Paladino and that just sticks in my craw in a real nasty way. I will make a decision by Tuesday. I’ll repeat here what I’ve said to my friends – politics in New York State is joke (a bad one.)

  48. frjim4321 says:

    Lirioroga . . . yes, you have a hard decision to make. I can’t believe the Republic party could not do better than Paladino. There is not one Republic candidate in that state with more capacity to govern that Carl Paladino? Every time he opens his mouth it’s another embarassment.

    At least he is a family man. (Both families.)

  49. michelelyl says:

    In Oregon, we vote by mail, so I voted the day my ballot came in the mail- and I voted my informed conscience- which means I wrote in my husband (Deputy Grand Knight of the local Kof C Council) as the candidate for most of the positions, since all of those running for office in my area are complete fools who have no concept of morality. My beloved husband will probably not win, but I can sleep at night, knowing I voted for a person I trust who is a practical Catholic.

  50. David Collins says:

    Catholic Midwest:

    No, I never heard of Jean Buridan.

    No, I am not talking about strategies for achieving some political ends. It is utterly hopeless to think we can establish the Reign of Christ at the ballot box; there simply aren’t enough of us devout Christians. We are a small minority swimming in an heathen sea.

  51. catholicmidwest says:

    I agree with you on the prospects for voting in a “Reign of Christ.” But, tell me, if you can’t do that, are you willing to accept whatever happens by default if you don’t vote?

    [I’m a bit puzzled too. Didn’t Christ refuse to take over Rome (meaning the global government of the time) once before when he was urged to do so by so many people? Why would he do so now? Is this what this is really all about?]

  52. David Collins says:

    CM, you’re assuming that voting can actually change things or perhaps slow them down. I do not for a second believe that; therefore, we have to accept whatever happens whether or not we vote.

    Both parties work for Big Business. Just recently, Health Insurance companies saw a chance to make even more money and call it “Health Care Reform”. After tough negotiations, they finally got it and, no, it sure as heck isn’t single payer healthcare.

    At any rate, Congress doesn’t work for us. They work for Wall Street.

  53. catholicmidwest says:

    On the contrary, David. I believe that voting Republican will break up the will in the Congress to pass things without our consent at the rate they were passed in the last 2 years. It’s been widely observed that Zero-bama gave the Congress free reign to do whatever they wanted and it has to end.
    There’s always executive privilege, which unfortunately we can’t do anything about, but a change in seats in the Congress is an open threat against those who would run over us in public, at least. The next job is to get Zero-bama out of office in 2012. He has absolutely no idea what he’s doing there and it’s evident, to friend and foe alike. He’s the worst president we’ve ever had, over and above all this other stuff. He’s an idiot.

  54. catholicmidwest says:

    Also, David, I am fully aware that Congress works for Wall Street. But they have been emboldened in the last 2 years to openly defy the American people.

    It’s a very scary time. There is not the understanding and the will to move the country past where we are, yet, the Democrat faction of the status quo runs wild. We can’t do this and stay solvent in the world. It’s got to stop. It’s very dangerous.

  55. catholicmidwest says:

    Also, David, I’m a traditionalist, politically speaking. I believe the Republicans and Democrats have the same goals with the difference between them only being the rate of change. However, as a traditionalist, I am well aware that no matter what kind of a regime you find yourself in, you have to steer the ship of state with whatever levers you can get your hands onto. These (political upheaval and slowdown) are the levers we currently have.

    My ideal right now would be to elect EITHER a) a completely deadlocked Congress who can pass virtually nothing save items of absolute national emergency. I want them to cease being a tool for Zero-bama’s idiotic and off-topic redistribution schemes, OR or b) a Republican majority large enough to impeach Zero-bama and then sit tight because there would be enough tea-partiers there to put a damper on additional idiocy that harms the American people. Barring the latter, the next logical step is to get that congenital idiot Zero-bama out of the Oval Office in 2012 before he causes any more damage.

  56. TJerome says:

    it’s always disheartening to have a clergyman write that they are a member of the Party of Death, as Cardinal Burke refers to the modern Democratic Party. I suspect if Jesus Himself told that clergyman to disassociate himself with that Party, he would tell Jesus, no, because after all, they support the Minimum Wage, the greatest Sacrament of all. If this were 1960 NO Roman Catholic would dare to identify themselves with the Democratic Party, if abortion on demand had been allowed then. It would have been the end to their membership in the Church.

  57. kat says:

    I will vote; I will vote as a Catholic first, in line with the Truths of the Faith. I unfortunately cannot impact our governor’s race in MI, because neither is truly pro-life; but I will vote for other candidates and other offices. I look at each person independently of the party they are with, although it does seem there are more Republicans eligible for my vote than Democrats. I start with pro-life, pro-family issues, and once I find those candidates, I move my way on to other issues, if there are two or more to choose from.

    As far as “Catholics” like Jennifer Granholm and her ilk, I have only one thing to say: If a person cannot be faithful to his or her God and Church, how can he or she POSSIBLY be faithful to anything else they say? They are not worthy of any trust, no matter what other “good” things they claim they want to do. A bad Catholic, (in my opinion) who has OPPORTUNITY for grace more than others of any religion, is worse than others. They can stand honestly for NOTHING.

  58. Martial Artist says:

    @ jamie r,

    You wrote:

    It’s more important that we have legislators that legislate well, and though the best legislator would ban abortion, it isn’t clear to me that it is actually or necessarily the case that all ostensibly pro-life candidates are fit to be in government.

    My first instinctual response is that I probably doubt that anyone other than you and I are “fit to be in government” and now that I think about it, I am not so sure about you.

    My second instinctual response would be that it seems to have been very often the case that the best Popes we have had were, subsequent to their election, found to have been praying that it would be “anyone other than themselves.” I think the same is probably true of the majority of people we would find best qualified to hold elective office—rather than a position to be sought, it would be a duty they would reluctantly accept.

    Pax et bonum,
    Keith Töpfer

  59. Iconophilios says:

    In comparison to things here in Canada, you Americans are lucky. You actually have pro-life politicians, whereas we up North have none. If any politician here even mentions abortion (in the liberal way, I mean), they are ripped to shreds by our media – and same goes for religion.
    Good luck, Americans

  60. RCOkie says:

    After hearing some of the anti-Catholic sentiment, especially regarding Card. Burke, about Catholics being told how to vote, I was shocked (although I don’t know why) to hear several non-Catholics at my job tell how someone came to their churches over the weekend to “tell us how to vote.” No one seemed bothered by this or was critical of it, except a former Catholic. That’s life in the Bible Belt.

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