Note that I am not a Catholic, but this post on Biltrix really struck a chord with me. A Catholic believer asked if it was a mortal sin to support a candidate who was pro-abortion. The point about it being a mortal sin tripped up the priest. However, for the reasons below, he was clear that it was wrong:
What if the candidate stood behind the following positions?
- Eliminate wasteful spending in a way that satisfies you.
- Rewrite the tax-code in a way that satisfies you.
- Extend free healthcare to as many people as possible in a way that satisfies you.
- Resolve the immigration problem in a way that satisfies you.
- Provide support, funding, and weapons technology to regimes in foreign countries that actively and blatantly engage in ethnic cleansing through genocide — in a way that satisfies you.
Scratch that last phrase. No one is going to vote for this person knowing that he openly supports genocide. Clearly, anyone who would do so, regardless of his or her own opinions about genocide, knows that voting such a person into office is tantamount to sanctioning murder.
Voting for a pro-choice candidate of any political party is tantamount to sanctioning murder. Period. The laws and policies that allow for killing innocent human beings can never be tolerated under any circumstance whatsoever.
Is it more complex than that?
Yes it is. People can raise further questions that seem to complicate the issue even further. I am not saying that all those questions are easily answered. However, it does not matter how many other issues you can compound with this one, what kind of dilemmas they might raise for some people’s consciences, or how they might appear to introduce contradictions into some people’s voting decisions — no further question you might ask can take away from the fact at hand. Abortion is murder and it cannot be tolerated.
So, according to Catholic doctrine, is support for a pro-abortion candidate a mortal sin? Maybe, maybe not. However, should a pro-abortion stance be a deal breaker for Christians? Certainly yes. Spending, the tax code, healthcare reform, and immigration simply do not in any way reach the level of importance of the sanctity of human life.