Faith, Abortion, and Voting, Part 2
In this series leading up to Election Day, we will explain why abortion is the most serious and urgent social issue of our time and what this means for Catholic voters. Are we simply free to vote for whatever candidate we prefer, for any reason that’s in our conscience? Or does our right to vote come with objective moral responsibilities that we must consider before casting our ballot?
Last time we noted that not all social issues are equal. Some are so important that we call them preeminent, putting them above all others. These issues deserve the most consideration when we evaluate which candidates to vote for.
Catholics must discern elected officials’ views on abortion and hold them accountable for them, which the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops calls “our preeminent priority.” We can do this by bearing in mind fives rules that Catholic politicians need to follow when it comes to abortion. These rules are based on what the Church has taught through offices such as the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and the USCCB, as well as magisterial statements.
First, it is every politician’s duty to make sure the law recognizes the right to life of all innocent human beings. As the Catechism says, “The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation.” (2273) …