Catholic League president Bill Donohue comments on a recent attack on the Catholicism of U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr:

Over the weekend, left-wing nuts picked up on a screed by Frank Cocozzelli in the Daily Kos, home to assorted crackpots. In a piece that was deeply conspiratorial, he tries desperately to convince the reader that U.S. Attorney General Bill Barr is a Catholic extremist out to destroy democracy.

Cocozzelli says he was “dismayed with in watching Attorney General William Barr’s performance two days ago before the House Judicial Committee [sic].” Instead of crafting a diligent response, he seeks to portray Barr as having “links” to the “highly secretive, ultra-conservative Catholic group Opus Dei.”

He says the organization “is known for recruiting very influential members, especially those simpatico with culturally conservative causes. To describe its many wealthy and powerful leaders as economic royalists would be an understatement.” (His emphasis.)

Continuing with this conspiratorial tone, Cocozzelli says that Opus Dei members “are not ashamed of the organization’s wealth, but are actually conspicuous about it as evidenced by its new seventeen-story 243 Lexington Avenue, New York, New York headquarters.” That alone should be enough to bring in a SWAT team.

What does this have to do with Barr? Is he a member of Opus Dei? If so, who cares, aside from the kooks who write for the Daily Kos?  Cocozzelli says Barr “may be a ‘Supernumerary’ (married member) or simply a ‘cooperator (sympathetic non-member).'” In other words, he doesn’t know. So much for the “link” to Opus Dei.

What is really eating away at Cocozzelli is Barr’s politics. Barr is not a fan of the public schools. Moreover, “in a 1992 address to Bill Donohue’s Catholic League, he called for the imposition of ‘God’s law’ in America. In that same address he went after contemporary supporters of the separation of church and state (‘The secularists of today are clearly fanatics’).”

In point of fact, in 1992 I was a professor in Pittsburgh, so Cocozzelli’s attempt to “link” Barr to me is another failed exercise.

This doesn’t stop Cocozzelli from concluding that Barr’s views prove that “This is precisely why the Attorney General’s Opus Dei links matter.” Reality check: No links were demonstrated. Even if they did, it is a non-starter.

Cocozzelli concludes that Barr is “willing to destroy the norms of both justice and American democracy.” Yeah, he did a great job of proving just that.

Time for this guy to check himself into the nearest asylum.

Contact Susan Gardner, exec. ed.: susang@dailykos.com

Print Friendly, PDF & Email