by Mike McMonagle, President
Pro-Life Coalition of Pennsylvania
Some local and national Christian leaders have expressed a lack of clarity about the 2016 Presidential Election. The application of our Lord's Second Great Commandant provides great clarity to that decision. That Commandant is, "Love Thy Neighbor as Thyself."
There are approximately 32,000 children killed before birth each year by abortion in Pennsylvania, including 15,000 in our Archdiocese of Philadelphia. If a Presidential candidate advocated a legal right to directly and unjustly kill us, we would fervently desire that our fellow voters reject that candidate. We would also desire Christian leaders to clearly and cogently urge this rejection.
Hillary Clinton fervently supports a "legal right" to abortion. Furthermore, Clinton has committed to increase abortions by ending the Hyde Amendment, which has saved millions of children of low income mothers from abortion by greatly restricting federal Medicaid funding of abortion. Even worse, in the long-term, would be Clinton's filling the U.S Supreme Court with nominees committed to continuing the created "constitutional right" to kill unborn children by abortion.
Thus, any 2016 Presidential Election analysis by a Christian leader that does not begin by a clear teaching of why Hillary Clinton should be rejected by fellow Christians fails to love our neighbors in the womb.
Such a teaching does not necessarily require urging a vote for her opponent, Donald Trump. Most leaders in the pro-life movement, including me, supported candidates other than Donald Trump for the Republican Presidential nomination. We believed that these candidates had sincerely pro-life positions and proven pro-life records.
However, since Trump won the Republican Presidential nomination in May 2016, he has provided the strongest and most specific pro-life commitments than any other prior Republican Presidential candidate. He has identified some excellent prospective U.S. Supreme Court Justices and selected pro-life Gov. Mike Pence as his Vice-President nominee.
Trump's lewd and misogynistic comments should disgust Catholics and other Christians and give us pause about supporting him. Nevertheless, we also need to be introspective and consistent in our moral priorities. We supported Gov. Mitt Romney in 2012 whose words once advocated the killing of children before birth. We also supported Gov. Ronald Reagan whose actions (of signing California's 1967 "Therapeutic Abortion Act") caused the death of hundreds of thousands of children before birth.
Catholics and other Christians have a moral obligation to love our unborn neighbors as ourselves and not enable their killing with our votes for President. The election of Donald Trump has become the only way to prevent the election of Hillary Clinton. This obligation and this reality require a vote for Donald Trump.
NOTE: To see where the presidential candidates stand on the issue of life, please use this link.
Michael J. McMonagle is the President of the Pro-Life Coalition of Pennsylvania. He has served as a leader in the pro-life movement at the local (Philadelphia), state (Pennsylvania) and national levels since 1980.