The Common Good

Evangelical and Catholic Leaders Respond to Democratic Party Platform on Abortion

Source: Sojourners
Date: August 12, 2008

*******MEDIA ADVISORY******

Evangelical and Catholic Leaders Respond to Democratic Party Platform on Abortion

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"New language provides common ground to focus on reducing the need for abortions”

WHAT: During a teleconference on Tuesday, August 12th, evangelical and Catholic leaders responded to the positive step forward that the Democratic Platform Committee has taken in establishing common ground that will help lead to abortion reduction.

WHY: There are millions of evangelicals and Catholics who rightly expect their own moral convictions on abortion to be included and respected in the Party. The new Democratic Party Platform takes a significant step forward in affirming women whose moral convictions lead them to make a different decision than abortion when facing this difficult choice.

AUDIO To access an online audio recording of the event please visit:

RECORDING: www.sojo.net/abortionreduction

INTERVIEWS: All of the spokespeople are available for interview.

Jason Gedeik: 202-745-4633 / jgedeik@sojo.net

HIGHLIGHTS FROM THE DISCUSSION:

REV. JIM WALLIS, Founder and CEO of Sojourners, the largest network of progressive Christians in the United States, and best-selling author of God's Politics and The Great Awakening

"The Democratic Platform Committee really reached out to moderate religious leaders from evangelical and catholic religious communities. The resulting language in the platform on abortion is a real step forward that provides some sorely needed common ground around reducing the need for abortion.”

REV. JOEL HUNTER, Senior Pastor, Northland Church (Orlando, FL), author of A New Kind of Conservative and former President of the Christian Coalition

"Pro-life voters of either party can now support Sen. Obama on the basis that more lives will be saved than if they had just taken a moral stand hoping to overturn Roe vs. Wade. Cynical partisan profiteers will find fault with the tone of this plank, but knowing the battle that went into the insertion of the new language, I am very encouraged that Democrats have widened their public support of mothers who choose life.”

DR. LISA CAHILL, The Monan Professor of Theology at Boston College

"Healthcare, education, income support, adoption - to Catholics these are also prolife issues and moral issues. They are common good issues. So as a Catholic and a feminist, I'd say it's not only about women's choice, it's not only about entitlement programs, but it's about the goal of enabling all women with their children to be full participants in our society - that women are full and equal and they can contribute and raise their kids and have healthy families if they have the support. It's really seeing everyone as a member of our society that we respect and to whom we have a responsibility.”

DOUGLAS KMIEC, Chair & Professor of Law at Pepperdine University, and the former Dean of the The Catholic University Law School

"It is significant for the Democrats because of it is course a great expansion for them. It is however also significant for Catholics because it reaffirms a much larger sweep of the alternative ways to address abortion. It is significant for women because the Supreme Court of the United States has wrongfully said that their social and economic participation in the economy depends upon their access to abortion, which really puts things backwards. It basically says that women must sacrifice their children to be full participants in the economy when it's the economy that ought to restructure itself to accommodate the interests of family, which we all know is so vitally important to the sustenance of our culture.”

CHRIS KORZEN, Executive Director of Catholics United and author of A Nation For All

"Addressing abortion in practical and constructive ways has been an important goal, particularly to move us beyond the abortion deadlock to make progress on so many other important life issues as well. We know that abortion reduction measures aimed at the root causes actually work.”

REV. TONY CAMPOLO, Eastern University, author of The Red Letter Christians, and member on the Democratic Platform Committee

"What we are really doing are calling upon the Republican brothers and sisters to join us and to participate in reducing abortions in America. We have done part of the job. They have to, in fact, say "We want the same kind of concerns addressed. We want the economic factors addressed.” They have been reluctant to do that in the past. I am hopeful and prayerful that they will do this in the future.”