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Progressive Revival

“The Catholic case for Barack Obama” has rarely been put so convincingly as it is in this Newsweek essay. Or, at least, a case for voting freely, according to one’s conscience and the range of issues. The argument is made by three leading Catholic legal and theological scholars, Nicholas P. Cafardi, M. Cathleen Kaveny and Douglas W. Kmiec, in “A Catholic Brief for Obama: Why the faithful can in good conscience back the Democrat.”

The essay is a response to a pointed piece in the magazine by George Weigel, in which he coined the phrase, “Obamapologetics.” Not bad. But the three scholars have a pretty good rejoinder. A choice excerpt:

Is Obama the perfect pro-life candidate? No. Is he preferable to the self-proclaimed “pro-lifer” McCain? Yes, because promoting life in actuality beats McCain’s label and all of Weigel’s elegant theorizing and hand-wringing. The Republican alternative familiar to Weigel is simultaneously self-righteous, easy and ineffective. The Democratic path is practical, anything but easy–as no act of bona fide love of neighbor ever is–but inviting of a life-affirming outcome.

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