For a second day in a row, the Vatican daily L’Osservatore Romano echoed the U.S. bishops’ criticism of Barack Obama’s pro-abortion policies, which many pro-life Catholics have claimed to be missing from previous reports in the Vatican newspaper related to the U.S. President.
The front page article, signed by Marco Bellizi and titled "the U.S. Bishops Regarding Conscientious Objection," reports on Cardinal Francis George’s statement released last Friday by the USCCB. The statement requested that President Obama deliver on his alleged commitment to respect the right to conscientious objection, a right which, according to L’Osservatore, should include "the right not to finance abortions with taxes paid to the state."
"This is a relevant issue, since following the decisions made by the new administration on ethical issues, many health workers could find themselves providing services that they do not morally accept," Bellizi writes.
The front page article in the Sunday edition of the Vatican’s newspaper quotes extensively the President of the USCCB as well as Msgr. David Malloy, General Secretary of the USCCB, who recently urged the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to respect human life at all stages.
L’Osservatore quotes Msgr. Malloy’s claim that "President Obama’s executive order of March 9" rescinded "the executive order of 2007 instructing the NIH to thoroughly explore new avenues for obtaining pluripotent stem cells without destroying human embryos… Both science and ethics have been ignored in this decision."
The two back to back articles in L’Osservatore Romano reflecting the U.S. episcopate’s critical stand to Obama have followed a series of complaints from several bishops and pro-life Catholics.
Early this week, the Vatican’s newspaper published a short news story commending Obama’s speech at Notre Dame and ignored the opposition of more than 70 U.S. bishops – including the President of the USCCB, Cardinal Francis George- to the university’s decision to honor the President despite his staunchly pro-abortion record.
The article, as well as a previous one arguing that Obama’s first 100 days in office did not confirm the Catholic Church’s worst fears about policy changes on ethical issues, had been used by pro-Obama Catholics to push the theory that "the Vatican" was somehow distancing itself from the majority of U.S. bishops.