From the Archive: Card. Burke on the obligation to VOTE properly

From the Archive.

On this day in 2010, I posted this:

Remember how soon-to-be Cardinal Raymond Burke was, as liberals crowed, promoted to a Roman office in order to remove his influence on the American scene?

This is from CNA with my E and C:

Rome, Italy, Oct 28, 2010 / 12:15 pm (CNA/EWTN News).- Cardinal-designate Raymond Burke stressed to Catholic voters in a recent interview that they have a “very serious” obligation to uphold the truth of “moral law” in the upcoming mid-term elections. He specifically cited protecting unborn children from abortion and defending traditional marriage.

The American Vatican official, who was recently named by the Holy Father as a future cardinal, spoke on Oct. 20 to Thomas McKenna, president of Catholic Action for Faith and Family, just hours after the Pope’s announcement.

Cardinal-designate Burke opened his remarks by saying that “as a bishop it’s my obligation, in fact, to urge the faithful to carry out their civic duty in accord with their Catholic Faith.” [Burke, as a Catholic bishops, is a bishop for the whole Church.] Clarifying that he does not endorse particular candidates, the prelate also spoke of his duty to relay “principles” to the faithful to help inform their vote.

Speaking on the contentious topic of abortion in the upcoming mid-terms, Cardinal-designate Burke said one [NB:] “can never vote for someone who favors absolutely the right to choice of a woman to destroy a human life in her womb or the right to a procured abortion.”

“You may in some circumstances where you don’t have any candidate who is proposing to eliminate all abortion, choose the candidate who will most limit this grave evil in our country,” he explained, “but you could never justify voting for a candidate who not only does not want to limit abortion but believes that it should be available to everyone.”

The Vatican prelate also addressed the issue of same-sex “marriage,” asserting that maintaining the definition of marriage as between one man and one woman is not unjust discrimination.

“Where there is unjust discrimination – for instance, where you say that a fellow human being, because of the color of his skin, is not a part of the same race as someone, say, who is a Caucasian, that is a kind of discrimination which is unjust and immoral,” he said.

However, he added, “there is a discrimination which is perfectly just and good, and that is the discrimination between what is right and what is wrong.” [This might be the bit idiots or the mendacious latch into.]

“Between what is according to our human nature and what is contrary to our human nature. So the Catholic Church, in teaching that sexual acts between persons of the same sex are intrinsically evil, [Idiots and the mendacious will claim that the Church (and Burke) says that the people who do these things are evil.] are against nature itself, [In other words, reason… common sense… informs us that such acts are intrinsically evil.  The Church also has revelation to support her teaching, but she also points to nature itself.] is simply announcing the truth, helping people to discriminate right from wrong in terms of their own activities.”

In his interview, Cardinal-designate Burke also urged Catholic politicians who have caused “scandal” by endorsing positions contrary to moral law to repent through a “genuine reform of heart.” [This is one of the most serious wrongs that Catholic pro-abortion politicians do when they support evil positions contrary to Church teaching: they cause scandal in a very public way.  The Church must defend the faithful against that damage.  First the Church must try to get the person who caused the damage to try to make amends and heal it.  Otherwise, the Church must separate that person from Communion with the hope that she will correct her views.]

“That’s done through the Sacrament of Penance,” he said, adding that political figures must publicly “renounce” their errors, recognizing and recanting the “evil” they have promoted.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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

    “You may” is not “you must”, “some circumstances” is not “all circumstances” or necessarily “this circumstance”.
    I deeply believe compromising on Romney is compromising with evil.

  2. L. says:

    I live in a Diocese in which our Bishop at his ordination announced that he was glad he was in a State with a Democratic Governor, which seemed rather more enthusiasm than needed to be shown, even if the Governor was sitting before him. The attorney and lobbyist for the Diocese in the state capital also happened for years to be the Chairman of the Democratic Party who happily endorsed pro-abortion Democratic candidates for office, even the Catholic one who ran for President several years ago. I think our Diocese was among the last to issue a statement opposing the HHS abortifacient mandate. So, I don’t think Cardinal Burke’s teaching will get much play here, and our diocese is unlikely to instruct us that there is a big difference between Mr. Romney’s reluctance to outlaw abortion in a few, limited cases and Mr. Obama’s view that infanticide should be legal.

  3. mamajen says:


    But helping Obama (the most pro-abortion president ever) win isn’t compromising with evil?

    I hope for everyone’s sake you don’t live in a swing state.

  4. Mike Morrow says:

    To mamajen: Ignore the troll.

  5. mschu528 says:

    In what way is AnnAsher trolling? Seems like a simple discussion on the topic at hand.

    Romney is a member of an anti-Christian Masonic cult which professes that Jesus Christ was once a mortal being.

    He is pro-abortion. He is not opposed to homosexual “marriage.” He claims he will reverse the HHS mandate, but then goes on to declare “I don’t believe employers should tell someone whether they can have contraceptive care or not. Every woman in America should have access to contraceptives.”

    Anyone who thinks either the Democratic or Republican party represents a Christian viewpoint is grossly mistaken.

  6. mamajen says:



    If Obama wins a second term, it’s game over for America. Living our Catholic values in this country will become extremely difficult. It frustrates, angers and worries me that people don’t get it. But if they’re determined to think they know better than good priests, bishops and popes, then there is no way my comment on a blog is going to change their minds. I will continue to pray for a good outcome to this election, and I hope everyone else is praying, too.

  7. acardnal says:

    FYI, HE Cardinal Raymond Burke will be on EWTN tonight at 9 PM ET. It is a recorded interview discussing the 2012 elections.

  8. Angie Mcs says:

    Mamjen: I totally understand where you’re coming from. We all have to make sure we do what we feel is right, of course. But I’ve been giving this election a lot of thought lately,especially as I sat in church and looked around me today – and my biggest comfort is that I feel God has His plan, and although we cant understand it right now, in the end we must turn this over to Him. As long as I hold onto that thought, I don’t feel so overwhelmed with what may happen. And yes, I will continue to pray, and pray some more. :)

  9. Springkeeper says:

    I (and my son and husband) voted yesterday and we live in a swing state. We voted for LIFE and religious freedom!

  10. Suburbanbanshee says:

    Darius was a pagan tyrant, but he was sensible and pious enough not to fight God, even if he thought God was just the God of the Jews.

    So if the Jews had gotten a chance to vote, and their choice had been, say, Titus or Darius, obviously it would have been better to vote for Darius than for Titus, who had destroyed the Temple, hauled off the Temple treasures, and built a pagan temple on top of the Temple Mount.

    So you don’t have to think Romney is totally Catholic or totally correct. You just have to evaluate whether he’s acceptable, and whether he’s a better deal than Obama; or you just have to evaluate whether voting for a known threat to Catholicism, civil liberties, and the wellbeing of the US is better than voting for some guy who’s got some ill-informed positions but generally does a good job.

  11. SKAY says:


    I would never vote for Nancy Pelosi–and she is supposed to be Catholic. It depends on the
    If you are going to talk about the Morman church–then you should also talk about Black Liberation Theology because that is what Rev Wright preached and Obama belonged to his
    church for 20 years.

    Obama has made it a point to talk about the kind of Supreme Court judges that he will nominate and he made it clear that they will certainly support keeping Roe v Wade. If the Democrats keep the Senate–he will be able to appoint any far left judge he chooses. He will not be worried about re-election.

    Romney has said that he will defund Planned Parenthood and reinstate the Mexico City Policy and the Hyde ammendment.
    I believe voting in a way to keep Obama in office is also compromising with evil. The HHS mandate is just the beginning and with a second term there will be no turning back.

    Thankfully-up to THIS point-we still have the first ammendment that gives us freedom OF religion-not from religion– and we still have a choice.

  12. cornelius74 says:

    Let me please have a question here. I came across a blog raising this issue: when the fetus is declared a person, that means all possibly involved in an abortion are liable with aggravated murder (by murdering a person under certain age). Such an offence is punishable even by death in some states. Second thing is the “rape exception”, meaning only those women who were raped could possibly have an abortion. That means such a woman would have to prove somehow, that she was indeed raped. I would be very grateful for some insight into this, because I must admit, this did not occur to me before. The author of the blog is a prosecutor, who has been dealing with serious crime for the past decade. I hope I don’t have to stress here that as a Catholic I am of course against abortion. Thank you.
    You can find the blog post in its entirety here:

  13. wmeyer says:

    My wife and I cast our votes Saturday morning, voting for life, and necessarily, for the removal of the sitting president.

    I cannot accept any rationale in support either of voting for O, nor voting for a 3rd party candidate. The former is ruled out by Church teaching, as very clearly explained in many messages, notably those from Card. Burke, and Apb. Chaput. The latter is ruled out by the historical reality that votes for a third party tend to favor the incumbent. To me, any vote which could favor leaving O in for a second term would be a failure of my duties as a Catholic citizen.

  14. Sissy says:

    cornelius72: I read your link. The individual is stridently opposed to the life position, so I wouldn’t put too much stock in her claims. She raises some straw man arguments, for instance, she ponders how she to decide whom to prosecute and on what grounds? Well, that is her job. She is always being asked to make decisions about whom to prosecute.

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