Monday, May 16, 2011

Boehner Criticized By Catholic Professors For Policies That Hurt The Vulnerable

Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner is known for his “So be it” dismissal of potential federal job losses, his desire to repeal health care reform, his consistent support of policies that favor the rich and powerful, and his shilling for financial deregulation. Boehner spoke at the Catholic University of America this past Saturday; prior to his address, he received a letter from Catholic professors criticizing his record for the harm it has done to the disadvantaged:

More than 75 professors at Catholic University and other prominent Catholic colleges have written a pointed letter to Mr. Boehner saying that the Republican-supported budget he shepherded through the House will hurt the poor, the elderly and the vulnerable, and that he therefore has failed to uphold basic Catholic moral teachings.

“Mr. Speaker, your voting record is at variance from one of the church’s most ancient moral teachings,” the letter says. “From the apostles to the present, the magisterium of the church has insisted that those in power are morally obliged to preference the needs of the poor. Your record in support of legislation to address the desperate needs of the poor is among the worst in Congress. This fundamental concern should have great urgency for Catholic policy makers. Yet, even now, you work in opposition to it.”

The letter writers criticize Mr. Boehner’s support for a budget that cut financing for Medicare, Medicaid and the Women, Infants and Children nutrition program, while granting tax cuts to the wealthy and corporations. They call such policies “anti-life,” a particularly biting reference because the phrase is usually applied to politicians and others who support the right to abortion.

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