Catholic League president William Donohue explained today why he is supporting the “Justice Sunday” event sponsored by Protestants:

“On April 24, Family Research Council president Tony Perkins will hold  ‘Justice Sunday,’ an effort to rally pro-life Protestants against efforts to block people of faith from sitting on the federal bench.  He is being supported by Protestant leaders such as Rev. James Dobson, Dr. Al Mohler and Chuck Colson.  He has our support as well.

“For the past few years, the Catholic League has protested the way some Democrats have engaged in obstructionist strategies designed to stop committed Christians from being confirmed for circuit and district court positions.  In addition to discussing this issue on radio and TV, we have had Catholic League officials attend congressional hearings on some of the targeted nominees, and have written letters to all 100 senators outlining our position.  Our position is this: Though there is no de jure discrimination against people of faith, there is de facto discrimination.

“For example, when Senator Schumer labeled a pro-life candidate for the federal judiciary a person with ‘deeply held beliefs’ on abortion, we all know what that means: it’s code for deeply held religious beliefs.  It does not matter that senators like Kennedy, Durbin and Leahy—all of whom are part of the problem—are Catholic: none accepts the teachings of the Catholic Church on abortion, and are thus quite capable of keeping those who do from being a federal judge.  So as not to be misunderstood, let me repeat what I’ve said before: the Catholic League believes there are no anti-Catholic senators.  But that doesn’t empty the issue—if Catholics who hold to the Church’s position on abortion are repeatedly vetoed—the effect is clearly a form of de facto discrimination.

“Some opponents of ‘Justice Sunday’ have said that Dr. Al Mohler has branded the Catholic religion ‘a false religion.’  He’s obviously wrong, but then again he’s a Southern Baptist and that’s what they believe.  As long as we’re not called a satanic cult—ala Bob Jones University—I’m prepared to join hands in the culture war.”

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