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Confirmed: Obama, Romney to attend Al Smith dinner

Catholic World News - August 08, 2012

The Archdiocese of New York has confirmed that Cardinal Timothy Dolan has invited President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney to the Alfred E. Smith Memorial Foundation Dinner and that both have accepted the invitation.

The dinner will take place on October 18. It is traditionally a light-hearted affair, and the archdiocese typically invites both incumbent presidents and their major-party challengers during election years, though President Bill Clinton (along with Senator Bob Dole) was not invited in 1996 and Senator John Kerry was not invited in 2004.

“It is the tradition of the Smith dinner to invite the presidential candidates in the presidential election years in the spirit of nonpartisanship, good humor and good fellowship,” said archdiocesan spokesman Joseph Zwilling.

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  • Posted by: hartwood01 - Aug. 09, 2012 3:25 PM ET USA

    There is something to be said for keeping your enemies close at hand. In any event it will be an interesting and probably infuriating evening. I wonder if Mitt can keep his foot out of his mouth long enough to get through the evening.

  • Posted by: cpatrick_vb8732 - Aug. 09, 2012 10:42 AM ET USA

    This is a serious error. Obama should not share a platform with Catholic Church officials when he is bent on destroying that church. He has been dishonest in his dealings and will only use this dinner to try to continue to sway the many weak Catholics out there to support him.

  • Posted by: lauriem5377 - Aug. 08, 2012 10:51 PM ET USA

    Pray and fast that the Bishops will come to their senses and cancel this event. That the leadership of the Holy CatholicCchurch would sit down for an evening of joking and feasting with those responsible for the abortion mandate while babies are losing their very lives is simply unspeakable.

  • Posted by: St.John Neumann - Aug. 08, 2012 6:58 PM ET USA

    I am convinced that our bishops continually underestimate the power of demonic forces behind the politics in our "culture of death." They have failed to insist that Catholics live according to Humanae Vitae, they have tolerated dissent in the Church, they have ignored Pope Paul VI's prescient teaching on the reality and influence of the devil November 1972, and they do not rely upon the supernatural aids which God has given them, especially the power of the Rosary. cf Brazil 1960's and Austria

  • Posted by: mgreen32234 - Aug. 08, 2012 6:44 PM ET USA

    Almost 70% of Catholic Charities money comes from the Government. Dolan is protecting Catholic Charities with his right hand, and suing the Great Sterilizer with his left. The battle of the big grinners is on. Catholic Charities knows that The Won can cause the Federal tit to go dry faster than Dolan can say "sex trafficking grant". A firestorm of historical proportions.

  • Posted by: rpp - Aug. 08, 2012 2:40 PM ET USA

    I have to agree with Lucius49. Obama's appearance does indeed demoralize the faithful, however, it also undermines the bishops efforts to overturn immoral legislation. I realize that the bishops do not want to bee seen as political, but that does not mean we have to break our backs bending over backwards for those who principal goal is the (at best) marginalization (at worst destruction) of Christianity. Dis-invite the baby killer Obama.

  • Posted by: Lucius49 - Aug. 08, 2012 11:15 AM ET USA

    Past precedent should have been followed in the case of Kerry and Obama should not have been invited. The invitation undermines Obama's radical attack on the unborn and religious freedom. This demoralizes the faithful.

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