GOP identity crisis

By Phil Lawler (bio - articles ) | Jul 14, 2004

At its national convention in New York, the Republican Party will hear keynote speeches from-- let's see-- a Catholic governor who supports legal abortion, another Catholic governor who supports abortion, and a former Catholic mayor who supports abortion.

No, that is not a typo. I'm talking about the speakers at the Republican convention: Schwarzenegger, Pataki, and Giuliani.

Sad to say, the GOP seems embarrassed by its pro-life platform. (And I'm not the only columnist making that observation.)

During the coming campaign season, the Bush team will ask Catholics to remember that John Kerry is at odds with the principles of his-- our-- faith. That's certainly true. But the argument would be a lot stronger if, at the nomination showcase, the Republican Party gave a prime-time platform to a Catholic who is not at odds with the Church's teachings.

Phil Lawler has been a Catholic journalist for more than 30 years. He has edited several Catholic magazines and written eight books. Founder of Catholic World News, he is the news director and lead analyst at See full bio.

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  • Posted by: - Jul. 17, 2004 2:18 PM ET USA

    What they need is to have Alan Keyes speak at the convention. Den

  • Posted by: - Jul. 15, 2004 4:27 PM ET USA

    If you demand EVERYTHING from the GOP, instead of asking for as much as you can expect to get [that's politics], then you will end up with NOTHING, that is, with the forked-tongue Kerry, who might as well be shouting that "all circles are square."

  • Posted by: - Jul. 15, 2004 1:35 AM ET USA

    The organizers think it is okay after hearing Cardinal McCarrick saying that he would not feel "comfortable excluding" John Kerry from Holy Communion.Kerry has a 100% voting record ,of killing babies, right down to voting against "Laci Peterson's Law". He thinks that an 81/2 month old is not a human that you should protect. Maybe the GOP would not feel "comfortable excluding", these so-called Catholics, as keynote speakers. After all, the Cardinal is from DC, he is Catholic. Spare us, o Lord.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 15, 2004 1:17 AM ET USA

    Granted I certainly would not have chosen these men as speakers. HOWEVER, as November approaches we should not forget that at least Bush himself is more pro-life than Kerry. I fear that for the sake of being "fair and balanced" Phil has been critical lately of Bush and colleagues. Bush is not perfect, but he is the best chance that Catholics currently have. The liberal "mainstream" media has been out to get Bush since the day he was elected...let's not join the feeding frenzy at this time.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 14, 2004 10:09 PM ET USA

    I think it's a baby boomer thing. The WWII generation certainly wasn't perfect, but they were willing to disagree with each other and just roll the opposition at the ballot box. No touchy-feely with the other side, just an agreement that things would be settled by voting. With those younger, if we don't agree with each other we stay away from each other. Sometimes the parting is friendly, and sometimes it's not. We don't do team very well, but at least we're not in search of a non-stop love-in.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 14, 2004 8:40 PM ET USA

    It is not the GOP that should be embarrassed; rather, it's the bishops of Schwarzenegger, Pataki and Guliani (to name a few) who should be hiding their faces in shame.

  • Posted by: - Jul. 14, 2004 8:24 PM ET USA

    The GOP has had a pro-life platform since 1980 that in essence is a fraud. The words are just that; "words". The party resorted to every foul tactic to in attempt to ostracize the character of Pat Buchanan, because they couldn't beat him on the issues. In the process they drove every voter that votes on principle from their ranks. The true pro-lifer has resorted to voting on the lesser of two evils and that is all they will ever get from the GOP. They will get nothing but a blank from me!

  • Posted by: John J Plick - Jul. 14, 2004 7:29 PM ET USA

    There is surely a spiritual lie abroad here, and that is that it is necessary to "broaden your base" (that is compromise your principles) in order to ensure "mass appeal." The same lie appears to be operational in the post-modern Catholic Church. God does NOT favor such a strategy. It unfortunately betrays a certain agnosticism among the GOP.