Catholics United Disappointed by Bishops' Decision to Withdraw from Civil Rights Organization

Posted May 21, 2010

Catholics United executive director Chris Korzen issued the following statement today in response to the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' decision to leave the Leadership Conference on Civil and Human Rights (LCCR). The bishops withdrew their membership after the well-respected human rights coalition endorsed President Obama's nomination of Elena Kagan to the U.S. Supreme Court. The decision to leave LCCR comes in response to a pressure campaign by right wing Catholic groups and individuals, including former Bush Catholic advisor Deal Hudson.

“The U.S. Catholic Bishops' withdrawal from LCCR is part of a disturbing pattern of church leadership kowtowing to conservatives who are opposed to President Obama and the progressive agenda. Whether they know it or not, the bishops have become accomplices to the Republican Party and its allies. We witnessed this with health care reform, and now we see it with the Supreme Court nomination.”

“LCCR endorsed Elena Kagan because of her ability to interpret the Constitution and uphold our nation's laws. She is widely respected on all sides of the political spectrum, and as such can transcend the petty divisiveness that plagues our nation. Knowingly or not, the bishops are increasingly taking their lead from groups that use church teaching to further a political agenda. In doing so, the bishops are contributing to a coarsening of our nation’s political environment. We strongly urge them to reconsider.”