Skip to comments.Cardinal Timothy Dolan asks (presidential) candidates to sign civility pledge
Posted on 08/28/2012 12:50:34 PM PDT by NYer
NEW YORK (RNS) Cardinal Timothy Dolan, who sparked controversy by agreeing to deliver the closing blessing at the Republican convention in Tampa this week, on Monday (Aug. 27) drew further attention to his political role by asking both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama to sign a “civility pledge” promoted by a leading conservative Catholic activist.
Cardinal Timothy Dolan of New York, president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, has said talks with the White House over a proposed contraception mandate are "going nowhere." Credit: RNS photo by Gregory A. Shemitz
The archbishop of New York wrote to Romney and Obama, as well as their running mates, Paul Ryan and Joe Biden, asking them to sign the “Civility in America” pledge developed by Carl Anderson, head of the powerful Knights of Columbus and a man with long-standing ties to the Republican Party.
Dolan, who is also president of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and the most prominent Catholic churchman in America, said he wanted the candidates to forgo personal attacks and “remain focused on the critical issues facing our nation.”
Neither Dolan nor the Knights of Columbus pledge specifies which issues they meant. But Anderson, whose title is "supreme knight," has been a vocal supporter of the bishops' campaign against the administration’s controversial birth control health insurance mandate. The Knights have also donated millions of dollars to efforts against legalizing same-sex marriage.
For years Anderson has blasted Obama and Biden, who is Catholic, for their support for abortion rights. Just last week in the conservative journal National Review, Anderson penned a blistering critique of Obama for what he said was the president’s decision “to make unrestricted access to abortion a key component of his campaign.”
Anderson is a veteran GOP operative. He spent several years working for Jesse Helms, the late North Carolina senator and ardent culture warrior, before going to work in the Reagan White House. Anderson has influential allies among conservatives in the Vatican and the hierarchy, and the Knights of Columbus can deploy huge sums for – or against – causes they support or oppose.
In closing his letter to the candidates, Dolan promises that if the candidates sign he will “be most happy to be able to convey to Carl Anderson and to the 1.8 million members of the Knights of Columbus, that you have chosen to support this valuable effort.”
Dolan has become increasingly active and visible as the presidential campaign gears up. His decision to deliver the benediction at the GOP convention on Thursday night immediately following Romney’s official nomination was met with sharp rebukes from many who say his appearance will formalize what was seen as the hierarchy’s growing embrace of the Republican ticket.
Whether either of the candidates will sign Anderson’s pledge is unclear. Dolan’s plea comes after a prominent evangelical, Rick Warren, canceled plans for a “civil forum” appearance at his Southern California church by both presidential candidates, saying the nasty political atmosphere had ruined the opportunity.
Sources in both the Romney and Obama campaigns said that in fact neither candidate was planning to attend Warren’s forum. Both campaigns are targeting Catholics in the November election.
Just before Republican convention, now they are concerned about civility. Typical of RATS. Little late for civility. Obama calling Romney a felon, tax cheat, and murderer blew that out of the water.
One of the few times I think Cardinal Dolan should have kept to himself.
Obama will spit in his face if he thought it would swing a State his way.
Romney probably would. Obama’d have to shut down the campaign to do it.
Someone else who craves attention giving worthless advice. Have there been any duels fought, as there were in the early history of the US? Is anyone getting beaten up on the floor of the House or Senate, as we see regularly in South Korea?
,The Democrats can accuse Republicans of felony and murder and the Republicans basically roll over and take it. If they don’t respect themselves, why should others respect them? Once there was such a thing as honor, and one’s good name was prized above gold.
Has Cardinal Dolan become the Emily Post for voting?This is not about turning the other cheek. This is about what is morally wrong.
Good old duels-—when Virtue had meaning.
With the usurpation of the right that men used to have to defend their honor and families and reputations-—by the court of law——and since that court is corruptible and doesn’t care about defamation of character in the Media—etc.
Virtue is dying
—as long as the people are not held responsible for what they say in the public square. We need to return flogging at least, or the stocks for humiliating people who intentionally lie and defame. People should always be held accountable and defamation is really extremely harmful. The effects can destroy people’s livelihoods and all relationships. (and does).
This is why our country is in dire straights-—the press can lie and they are never held accountable for the lies they perpetuate-—making them just like Goebbels’ newspapers/movies. Most people believe the lies the press feeds them daily. They should be closed down and discredited when they intentionally lie.
As always, the extreme left-wingers want Republicans to be civil as they continued their hate-filled, mean-spirited attacks.
A so-called civility pledge would largely prevent Romney from telling the truth about the RATs. And the RATs won’t live up to anything they sign anyway. Don’t sign it!
The cardinal should avoid subjects about which he has no clue.
The LESS charitable interpretation of this inane request is that he’s in the tank for the Kenyan anti-Christ.
There is no religious prerogative for civility in politics.
The purpose of politics is to determine the fate of a nation and its people. If there is no great violence in doing so, to demand civility is to insist during brain surgery that by the rules of etiquette, a shrimp fork is more polite than a scalpel.
Politics has never, nor will it ever be, civil.
If you’re a politician and you want a friend, get a dog.
I’ll be posting this on every Dolan thread.
Dolan has not a clue as to what is morally wrong.
Hey Cardinal.....Obama LIED TO YOUR FACE!!!!! Go tell HIM to be civil!
You are so right.
Put them in Octagon. Lets get on with it.
No Quarter. Obama and the Democrats must go !
Does the “civility pledge” mean they will civilly murder the babies?
American Catholics should put away their wallets; it seems their hierarchy is more interested in being subsidized by, and subsidiary to, the state.
I am a big fan of civility and a bigger fan of precise language and good rhetoric.
Perhaps the good Bishop’s call would be better received if he pointed out some actual examples of “uncivil” language - direct quotes.
The pledge itself is completely vague.
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