Sen. Joseph Biden said yesterday that if the Republicans were serious about helping disabled children they would support stem-cell research.

Catholic League president Bill Donohue responded this way:

“Biden’s remark, which was aimed at Sarah Palin, is not only inaccurate, it exposes his Catholic Achilles’ heel once again. No one in public life has ever taken a position against all stem-cell research; adult stem-cell research is not ethically problematic. What millions of Americans object to is embryonic stem-cell research, and that is because it is impossible to do this kind of research without destroying the embryo. Now it may come as news to Biden that the embryo represents nascent human life, though it is not clear whether this would matter to a man who agrees with NARAL 75 percent of the time.

“The Catholic Church, to which Biden belongs, is opposed to embryonic stem-cell research; McCain and Obama, along with Biden, are not. In this regard, Palin is more Catholic than Biden. Not only does he look bad in comparison to Palin, it is coming at a time when Biden is being hit with a barrage of criticism from bishops angry with his ‘Meet the Press’ appearance where he declared abortion to be a personal matter.

“Bishop Morlino of Madison, Wisconsin saw Biden on TV and quickly put aside the homily he prepared for Mass: he instead branded Biden’s distortion of this issue as breaching church and state lines. Archbishop Chaput of Denver said it would not be wise for Biden to present himself for Communion. Biden, who hails from Scranton, was indirectly cited by Scranton Bishop Martino: he said that ‘No Catholic politician who supports the culture of death should approach Holy Communion.’ Biden’s outgoing bishop, Wilmington Bishop Saltarelli, said that if Biden becomes vice president, he will bar him from speaking in Catholic schools. Philadelphia Archbishop Rigali and Bridgeport Bishop Lori both blasted Biden for contradicting Church teaching on abortion.

“In short, Biden is self-destructing right before our eyes.”

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