How much clout do bishops have on health-care bill?
By Michelle Boorstein
In Baltimore this week, where the nation's Catholic bishops are holding their annual meeting, there are two narratives (at least) about the bishops' influence in the recently-passed House health-care bill fight.
One holds that the church is on the rise, as evidenced by the House bill winding up passing with the Stupak Amendment, which bars coverage of abortion care in health care plans that are part of government programs. This amendment was the reason the bishops were able to support the bill.
But as the health care fight moves to the Senate, there is another side arguing that the bishops don't have nearly the clout to drive the debate, as evidenced by Catholic Republicans in the House who did NOT vote for the measure. In the Senate, there aren't nearly so many conservative Democrats who are allied with the Church on the importance of limiting abortion in any final health care measure.
Meanwhile, very traditional Catholics are screaming about the church having sold out, saying it didn't go far enough. Progressive Catholics say the bishops are an embarrassment for focusing so much on abortion in a massive bill about health care.
Lots more at the bishops' conference I was unable to get to while I was there yesterday and Monday, as I was focused on their new pastoral on marriage and that wraps into the fight going on over same-sex marriage in the District.
Rachel Zoll of the AP gives you all the juicy stuff about changes in the Mass translations and a new report that says gay priests aren't any more likely to abuse others than heterosexual ones.
Michelle Boorstein| November 18, 2009; 8:15 AM ET | Category: God in Government Save & Share:
Previous: "2012" a theological disaster? | Next: Retired military chaplains urge repeal of "don't ask, don't tell" policy
Posted by: usapdx | November 20, 2009 10:49 AM
Report Offensive Comment
The comments to this entry are closed.