"The death of actor Christopher Reeve, a prominent advocate of human cloning and embryonic-destructive stem cell research, could be politically beneficial for Democrat presidential candidate, Sen. John Kerry," Culture and Cosmosreports. "But there are also signs that Catholic voters are increasingly turned off by Kerry's long litany of anti-life positions making it a possibility that Kerry would be hurt by trying to capitalize on the stem cell issue."
It is becoming increasingly clear that Kerry's positions on issues like abortion and stem cell research are having a negative effect among Catholic voters.
A front page story from [the October 12] New York Times addressed the growing number of Catholic bishops who are making the case that support for pro-abortion candidates is sinful because the fundamental nature of protecting life in Church teaching....
Equally significant, in Zogby's view, is the evidence that Catholic voters are responding to the messages of these pro-life bishops.
The Times story cites a Pew Research poll from this month that reports 42 percent of white Catholics favoring George Bush, 29 percent supporting Kerry and 27 percent as undecided.
A Zogby poll conducted in September revealed that Bush enjoyed significantly greater support among Catholics than he did among the general population in the battleground states of Minnesota, Iowa, Wisconsin, New Hampshire and Pennsylvania.
President Bush lost the Catholic vote four years ago to Al Gore 49-47 percent. Sources close to the Bush campaign are predicting a significantly higher count for Bush come November.
In an interview with the Catholic News Service, Zogby senior political writer Fritz Wenzel attributed the growing support of Catholics for Bush partly to the controversy that erupted this summer over whether or not Kerry ought to receive Communion.
According to Wenzel:
The media attention given to the issue advanced the pro-life cause. "Denying Communion is a whole different issue than abortion, but it made people aware of (the candidates') positions," Wenzel said. "It's like a potato chip that's the conveyor for the salt."
Pass the chips, please!
[Editor's Note: Hypertext links added.]
Ongoing commentary by the editors of CatholicKerryWatch
Sen. John Kerry stands with Kate Michelman (right) President of NARAL Pro-Choice America.
Since 1995, Michelman's group has given Kerry a 100% rating for his voting record to defend abortion.