Catholic League president Bill Donohue registers his concerns over President-elect Barack Obama’s decision to select Melody Barnes as Director of Domestic Policy Council:

“The left-wing Nation hails Barnes as a ‘dyed-in-the-wool progressive,’ and the even more radical Daily Kos calls her ‘an unabashed progressive.’ Barnes herself touts her role promoting a ‘common good’ approach to values issues, explaining that it is synonymous with ‘a progressive approach to governing.’ Her forte is working with the religious left, a skill she honed at the Center for American Progress.

“Barnes has earned her stripes on the religious left. When George W. Bush said in 1999 that his favorite philosopher was Jesus, the Baptist-raised Barnes went ballistic: She accused Bush of ‘creating the impression that we’re a spiritually monolithic country,’ thus ‘excluding people of different faiths and beliefs, and that’s wrong.’ Had he claimed Karl Marx as his favorite philosopher, Barnes would have said nothing.

“When recently asked why Obama is anti-school choice, and why he and his wife have decided not to place their children in failed D.C. public schools, Barnes said, ‘we want to make an investment in our public schools.’ But the ‘we’ obviously did not include the Obamas. More condoms are needed to fight AIDS, and the Bush administration is to blame for the fact that more blacks have AIDS than whites. She wants to overturn all restrictions on embryonic stem cell research, and her passion for abortion rights is so unyielding that she has served on the board of EMILY’s List and the Planned Parenthood Action Fund.

“A few years ago, when pro-life Catholic and evangelical judges were being summarily denied the right to serve on the federal bench, Barnes denied that bigotry was at play. To top it off, when asked to name people who are both pro-abortion and religious, she offered as proof the notoriously anti-Catholic group, Catholics for a Free Choice. Looks like Obama has chosen a ringer.”

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