CNA Staff, Nov 17, 2020 / 13:40 pm
The president of the U.S. bishops’ conference has announced the creation of a bishops’ working group to prepare for a Biden presidency.
Archbishop Jose Gomez told bishops Tuesday that a future President Biden, as a Catholic, would present unique challenges for the Church in the United States, especially regarding Biden policy positions at odds with Catholic doctrine.
“For only the second time, we are anticipating a transition to a president who professes the Catholic faith. This presents certain opportunities but also certain challenges,” Gomez said at the close of the USCCB Fall General Assembly on Nov. 17.
The archbishop said the bishops face “a unique moment in the history of the Church in this country.”
“The president-elect has given us reason to believe that his faith commitments will move him to support some good policies. This includes policies of immigration reform, refugees and the poor, and against racism, the death penalty, and climate change.”
“He has also given us reason to believe that he will support policies that are against some fundamental values that we hold dear as Catholics. These policies include: the repeal of the Hyde Amendment and the preservation of Roe vs. Wade. Both of these policies undermine our preeminent priority of the elimination of abortion,” said Gomez.
Biden, a former two-term vice-president under Barack Obama and a career senator, maintained a position on abortion regarded by Democrats as moderate for most of his political career. Biden supported the Hyde Amendment, which bans federal tax dollars from funding abortions, while also supporting the premise of legal abortion.
But during the 2019 Democratic primary campaign, Biden dropped his long-held positions on abortion and called for the codification of Roe v. Wade in federal law, which would essentially preclude any state limitations on abortion at any point in pregnancy.