The Fairness Foundation should immediately pull its ads that single out the billing practices of Catholic hospitals in Chicago and Washington, D.C., and cast them in a very negative light, said Catholic League president Bill Donohue.
Donohue calls it “sad” that “an organization which stands to benefit by punishing not-for-profit hospitals is running anti-Catholic ads in the name of helping the uninsured.”
The ad says how regrettable it is that Illinois Attorney General Lisa Madigan had to get involved in the issue by supporting legislation that would mandate non-profit hospitals to tighten their billing and collection procedures and give more to charity or risk their tax-exempt status. “But as with other immoral actions,” the ad states, “apparently the church needs to be forced by lawyers to do the right thing, to be moral. How sad.”
The Indiana-based Fairness Foundation, led by philanthropist J. Patrick Rooney, seeks to represent the interests of the medically uninsured. Rooney operates a private health company.
“And it’s not just this one ad that gives away the anti-Catholic bigotry of this group,” Donohue said in a Feb. 16 statement. He pointed out that wherethemoneygoes.com is another Fairness Foundation project that is “strewn with bigotry.”
“For example, the Web site lambastes Wheaton Franciscan Services for making allegedly exorbitant profits. It even questions whether there are too many Catholics on the Supreme Court,” said Donohue.
“Rooney has a stellar reputation for helping the Catholic poor,” Donohue concluded. “That is why he should pull these bigoted ads immediately. Either that or rename his foundation.”