On May 17, President Barack Obama is scheduled to give the Commencement address at the University of Notre Dame and receive an honorary doctor of laws degree. It has set off a fury that extends way beyond the campus.

Because the Obama-Notre Dame controversy is not an issue that deals with anti-Catholicism, we initially decided not to comment on it. But when the media kept calling us wanting to know what we thought anyway, we responded. The following is an excerpt of Bill Donohue’s comments on this subject that he delivered on CNN.

The first remark was given on March 25, a few days after the story broke:

· “I’ll tell you what, my phones have been ringing off the hook since last Saturday. I think this broke maybe on Friday and people have been e-mailing the Catholic League and contacting us through our website. This is the most polarizing thing I’ve seen in the Catholic community in some time.”

On March 30, Donohue offered the following comments:

· “Abortion, like racism, is intrinsically evil. Liberal Catholics would be against a racist getting an award. They’re not against giving an award to somebody who is pro-abortion.”

· “When he [Obama] was in the Illinois State Senate, he said a baby born alive as the result of a botched abortion—no health care for that kid. He found an exception to his universal health care. This guy is off-the-charts, 100 percent record with NARAL. Planned Parenthood loves this man. If this doesn’t disqualify him at a Catholic institution, nothing does.”

· “The ultimate losers are the kids, the parents, and the grandparents on their special day. And not only that. They’re giving him an award. So this is kind of an in-your-face situation. [Notre Dame] President Jenkins, I’m sure, is a good man. He made a lousy decision on this.

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