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Catholic Bishops Control Health Care Reform: Discuss

Among the more controversial aspects of the deal reached last night to ban coverage of abortion by private health insurance plans participating in health care reform: Lobbyists representing Catholic bishops were admitted into the office of Nancy Pelosi, the Speaker of the House of Representatives, to take part in negotiations between elected members of Congress about what measures would be allowed in the health care reform bill.

Discuss: Was this involvement ethical? Why or why not?

5 thoughts on “Catholic Bishops Control Health Care Reform: Discuss”

  1. Jim says:

    Creepy and telling about who runs American politics, but ethical — at least under the legal codification of ethics in our country, under which religious groups can advocate for passage of legislation but not advocate for election of public officials.

    1. J. Clifford says:

      Why do you think Catholic leaders exclusively, not leaders of any other religious group, were allowed to take part in the negotiations? Money politics of the kind that the Catholic churches recently exercised in Maine? Other strategic considerations?

      1. Jim says:

        That’s a very good question, and I don’t know the answer. What do you know?

        1. J. Clifford says:

          I don’t know the answer. Why didn’t the Democrats invite religious groups that SUPPORT reproductive choice into Nancy Pelosi’s office? Who decided which religious groups would get an invitation, and which ones wouldn’t?

          I’d particularly like to know what role the government-paid Catholic priest Daniel P. Coughlin, Chaplain of the House of Representatives, played in the selection of Catholic-only involvement in the negotiations.

          Coughlin offered an official government-sponsored prayer yesterday morning that the members of the House of Representatives would acknowledge their submission as “true believers in our common creation and disciples of the Supreme Master.”

          True believers only allowed?

          Daniel P. Coughlin certainly has been trying to establish Nancy Pelosi’s submission to the Catholic Church recently. From New York Magazine about a week ago:

          The House chaplain, Daniel P. Coughlin, steps forward to make introductions. “I told the sisters you are a good Catholic from the Catholic state of Maryland,” he booms, turning to Pelosi.

          The smile gets very, very wide. “Oh, yes,” she says, clasping her hands together.

  2. Tom says:

    She, like so many other politicians, has been such a turn-coat from “elections have consequences” to her complete sell-out of her constituents. i really wish Cindy Sheehan had defeated her last time around.

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