At the American Conservative Union's recent annual meeting, Deal Hudson, president of the Catholic Advocate, hosted an event with the theme “It's time for a Catholic Tea Party.”
The annual meeting of the ACU, called the Conservative Political Action Committee (CPAC) took place in Washington D.C. from Feb. 18-20.
Hudson told attendees of the Catholic Advocate event that “it was time for Catholics to realize they don't need permission from their bishops to become politically active.”
Hudson's remarks were made in the context of a campaign to “reform the Catholic Campaign for Human Development (CCHD)” that he is helping lead. The CCHD, which is under jurisdiction of the U.S. bishops, has recently come under fire for its alleged connections with a network of community organizations that have promoted abortion and the homosexual agenda.
Clarifying what he means by a “Catholic Tea Party,” Hudson said, “We are not calling for the dismantling of the USCCB, not at all. Episcopal conferences are fully mandated by the documents of Vatican II and the Code of Cannon Law.”
“But,” Hudson continued, “we want the USCCB to be managed in a way that does supplant the role and responsibility of the laity and programs like the Catholic Campaign for Human Development. In the case of USCCB programs like the CCHD a serious overhaul is necessary to prevent Catholic money from being spent on organizations supporting abortion and same-sex marriage.”
“$2,000,000 has been spent this way and it needs to stop,” Hudson claimed.
The conservative leader expressed another reason for the Catholic laity to become politically active, saying that they have relied too often on Evangelical organizations and have “lacked confidence” in participating in Catholic political activism.
Following his address, Hudson introduced Florida Senatorial candidate Marco Rubio, whom he described as a man who “will not compromise” and invited him to give some brief commentary. Also present was Matt Smith, vice president of Catholic Advocate and co-host of the event.