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The Catholic Church should not be “captive” of a political party

The Catholic Church should feel free to criticize the government if necessary and “should not be held captive by one party or another,” Bishop Daniel E. Flores of Brownsville, Texas said this week.

“The Church must have an independent voice to say that we agree when we can agree, and when we cannot agree, we are going to say something,” Bishop Flores told Crux, a Catholic online media.

“And that’s how it works. I mean, the church is free to talk, and we shouldn’t be captive to one party or another, ”he added.

Flores is the new head of the doctrine committee of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), which is responsible for assisting bishops “in the areas of faith and morals, providing expertise and advice. regarding the theological issues facing the Church in the United States. States. “

The Catholic Church has long been affiliated with the Democratic Party in the United States, and until the 1960s, Catholics could be relied on to vote Democrats. To date, the two Roman Catholic presidents have both run for the Democratic list, with John F. Kennedy winning 80 percent of the Catholic vote.

According to studies published in the 1970s by Richard Jensen, Paul Kleppner and others, in the presidential elections of the late 19th century, “Catholics of Irish, German and French descent voted for the Democratic candidate at high rates. of 75% and more ”. Catholics, especially the Irish, also formed the electoral base of Democratic political machines in major cities like Boston, New York, and Chicago.

Some time after the presidency of John F. Kennedy, the former Catholic Democratic electoral bloc began to fall apart, a process that was consolidated after the Supreme Court’s imposition of legal abortion in its Roe vs. Wade decision in 1973.

As the Democratic Party increasingly aligns itself with Planned Parenthood and the abortion lobby, the percentage of practicing Catholics voting Democrats has plummeted and the old Catholic-Democratic alliance has all but disappeared.

The Pew Research Center found in 2019 that “64% of Catholic Democrats and Skinny Democrats say abortion should be legal in all or most cases” and, overall, “Catholic Democrats are more likely to promote legal abortion rather than oppose it ”.

This is one example, Pew found, of Catholic supporters expressing “views much more in line with the positions of their political parties than the teachings of their church.”

A 2020 survey conducted by RealClear Opinion Research in partnership with EWTN News found a strong correlation between voting habits and religious practice among Catholics.

Among all Catholics, 68% said Supreme Court appointments were a concern in the 2020 election, while 59% said the same about abortion – but “among weekly mass attendees , concern about abortion climbs to 70% “.

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