border crossing

By Diogenes ( articles ) | Nov 15, 2007

Acknowledging that Catholic voters in Massachusetts generally support Democratic candidates who are in favor of abortion rights, O'Malley said, "I think that, at times, it borders on scandal as far as I'm concerned."

At first glance Cardinal O'Malley's words to the Globe look promising. But on a second reading...

It "borders on" scandal? What would it take to cross that border?

  • Would it qualify as full-fledged scandal-- not just a borderline issue-- if the Catholic voters of Massachusetts supported a Congressional delegation that had 11 out of 12 members earn a 100% approval rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America? Because that's already happened.
  • OK, suppose the people's elected representatives voted to require pharmacists to dispense abortifacient pills, even if those pharmacists had moral objections? And suppose, when the (Mormon) governor vetoed that legislation, the (majority Catholic) state senate overrode the veto without a single negative vote? Been there; done that.
  • What if a new governor (who captured a majority among Catholic voters) decided to reject a $700,000 federal grant for programs encouraging sexual abstinence, and the Catholic-dominated legislature remained silent? Oh, never mind.
  • Would it qualify as actual scandal if most of the Catholic voters in Massachusetts re-elected legislators who had voted to uphold legal recognition of same-sex marriage? That's happened, too.

Look: Let's be honest. The behavior of Massachusetts voters in the last few decades does not "border on" scandal.

If you're looking for something that "borders on" a state of scandal, I'd say: New Hampshire, Vermont, New York, Connecticut, and Rhode Island.

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