The Friends of Saint Benedict Center today criticized Saint Anselm's College in Manchester - a Benedictine institution for hosting the debate among Democratic presidential candidates on February 7th. The first in the nation New Hampshire Primary is Tuesday.
Of the seven candidates on the stage at Sullivan Arena Friday night, all repudiate Catholic teaching about the sanctity of human life and all believe that the killing of pre-born children through abortion should be legal, effectively unrestricted and taxpayer funded.
Former Vice-President Joe Biden, U. S. Senators Amy Klobuchar, Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren, and businessman Tom Steyer all stated that support for Roe v. Wade should be a litmus test for appointments to the U. S. Supreme Court. Biden, Klobuchar, Sanders and Warren called for Roe to be codified by statute into federal law.
Sanders, who called for increased funding of Planned Parenthood, said Roe should be a litmus test for all appointments to the federal judiciary, while Pete Buttigieg said, in the context of Roe, that the Supreme Court should be expanded and "restructured."
Biden, a self-identified Catholic, took credit for keeping abortion legal, claiming he led the effort to derail the nomination of Judge Robert Bork to the Supreme Court, who would have been the fifth vote to overturn Roe in Planned Parenthood v. Casey.
Just prior to the debate, Jesuit educated Tom Perez, Chairman of the Democratic National Committee, called, in an impassioned speech, for Democrats to stop Donald Trump from "attacking the reproductive rights of women."
The proceedings were opened, in a celebratory fashion, by college president Joseph Favazza, who extended "a warm Benedictine welcome on behalf of the Board of Trustees and the monks of Saint Anselm's."
In its 2003 statement, Catholics in Political Life, the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops enjoined that "The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions."
The Catholic Church has condemned procured abortion since the first century. In modern times, the Second Vatican Council declared that "abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes."
The Friends of Saint Benedict Center called the event "a shameful and scandalous betrayal of Catholic principles, a cruel abandonment of the innocent unborn, and a callous insult to the memory of the faithful Benedictines who founded the College of Saint Anselm."
Friends of Saint Benedict Center Communications Director C. J. Doyle made the following comment: "The clear message which Saint Anselm's sent to its students on February 7th was that contempt for Catholic beliefs, indifference to the consciences of Christians, and support for the killing of hundreds of thousands of unborn children each year in this country are morally respectable, and are no barrier to being given a forum at a Catholic institution."
"It is apparent, that for the leadership of Saint Anselm's, Christian morality and Catholic fidelity are lesser values than celebrity, political power and human respect."
"Not one of the candidates on the debate stage acknowledged the legitimate grievances of Americans horrified by abortion, made any gesture to conciliate pro-life members of their own party, or even mentioned the Catholic origins of the institution which gave them a platform. For Saint Anselm's on February 7th, Catholicism and its moral code were invisible."
- Friends of Saint Benedict Center