A new member of the U.S. bishops' National Review Board for the Protection of Children and Young People told the National Catholic Register that she's proud of her record of promoting abortion rights.
Attorney Pamela Hayes is one of five new members appointed to the 12-member National Review Board, which oversees compliance with sexual abuse and child protection policies in U.S. dioceses.
"I've contributed to a lot of pro-choice candidates, and so what? So what?" Hayes told the National Catholic Register in an interview Oct. 21. "What are they going to do about it? If they don't like it, then don't put me on the board.”
Hayes is one of five new members who will succeed outgoing members Charles Keating, Robert Bennett, Anne Burke, William Burleigh and Leon Panetta.
The newspaper reported that Hayes spoke harshly about U.S. bishops who have encouraged Catholics to consider a politician’s stance on abortion before voting. She also expressed support for embryonic stem-cell research.
A recent press report said Hayes had donated to Emily's List, an organization that lobbies in support of pro-abortion politicians. The story also revealed $2,000 in donations to John Kerry for President and two $250 gifts to pro-abortion Sen. Hillary Rodham Clinton of New York.
However, Hayes pointed out to the Register that she gave much more money to Clinton. "They haven't a clue how much money I've given to her," she said. She had also served on Clinton’s finance committee. Hayes said the story failed to mention numerous other pro-abortion causes and candidates, which she has supported over the years.
"If they're pro-choice and they're Democrat, they're my kind of candidate," the parishioner at St. Aloysius Parish in Manhattan told the Register.
Hayes is not the first pro-abortion member on the review board. The Register reported that Federal Election Commission records reveal that outgoing members Bennett and Panetta also donate to pro-abortion candidates. Panetta voted for abortion funding in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Bill Ryan, deputy director of communications for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, told the Register neither he nor other officials at the conference would comment about Hayes’ pro-abortion views, saying that it would be “inappropriate to comment on the views of an individual board member.”
The Register contacted USCCB president Bishop Wilton Gregory, general secretary Msgr. William Fay, and director of communications Msgr. Francis Maniscalco, but they were unavailable for comment.