BOSTON (BP)–Democratic presidential candidate John Kerry’s position on abortion and judicial nominees is being targeted by fellow Democrat Raymond Flynn, who placed an advertisement in The New York Times Oct. 10 criticizing Kerry for discriminating against “faithful Catholics.”
Kerry’s website claims that he “will only nominate individuals to the federal bench whose records demonstrate a respect for the full range of constitutional rights, including the right to privacy and the right to choose.”
Both Kerry and Flynn are Catholic, although Kerry’s pro-choice position runs counter to the teachings of the Catholic church. Flynn, the mayor of Boston from 1984-1993 and the U.S. ambassador to the Vatican under President Clinton, wrote an open letter to Kerry. The ad spanned nearly a full page.
“Senator Kerry, two of the most capable lawyers that we know — who are also Catholics faithful to the Bishops’ pro-life mandate — are Harvard Law Professor Mary Ann Glendon and noted attorney Philip Moran,” Flynn writes. “Your litmus test would bar these and many other highly qualified people from the judiciary.
“Why do you, Senator Kerry, have a ‘litmus test’ for judicial candidates that discriminates against Faithful Catholics?”
The advertisement was paid for by Liberty, Life and Family, Inc — a non-profit Washington, D.C. Catholic organization that encourages Catholics to engage the culture. Flynn serves as its president.
Democratic senators have successfully filibustered several federal judges within the past two years because of their suspected pro-life position.
“… Senator Kerry, you have announced that you will only support people to the Federal Judiciary who support killing unborn children,” Flynn’s letter reads. “Yet, the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops mandates that:
“‘the killing of an unborn child is always intrinsically evil and can never be justified’ … and that those ‘who formulate laws … have an obligation in conscience to work toward correcting morally defective laws, lest they be guilty of cooperating in evil and in sinning against the common good’.”
Flynn said his letter was not “on behalf of or in opposition to” Kerry’s candidacy.
“[B]ut I am asking you to announce today that you will not impose any abortion litmus test on candidates for the Federal Judiciary … especially those who are Faithful Catholics,” Flynn writes.