Reader: Cardinal O’Malley slams euthanasia effort, NPR’s abortion story, Gardasil researcher changes sides

Welcome to the Lunchtime Reader, where we assemble important stories to keep your eyes on.

Cardinal Sean O’Malley of Boston denounced an effort to get physician-assisted suicide on the Massachusetts ballot. “We hope the citizens of the Commonwealth will not be seduced by language [such as] dignity and compassion, which are means to disguise the sheer brutality of helping people to kill themselves,” said O’Malley. Here are some links from the Massachusetts Catholic Conference for those interested in more information. Supporters of euthanasia need 70,000 signatures to get it presented for action and the Legislature would either vote on the measure or send it to the ballot box for citizens to vote on the measure.

The National Abortion Federation cheered a recent NPR story on abortion doctors and linked the story on their Facebook page. But NPR’s Ombudsman, Edward Schumacher-Matos, was upset about the story, slamming the news agency for using the loaded term “abortion doctor.” Does this mean this editor thinks it was inappropriate to label an abortionist with the nice term of “doctor”? Ah, No. He thought NPR wasn’t favorable enough to abortion supporters. “We don’t say a physician is an STD doctor. Or a child-birth doctor. Or a breast-exam doctor,” Schumacher-Matos said. Apparently the approved term is “abortion provider.” Sheesh. What a Culture of Death we live in.

There’s another wrinkle regarding Gardasil, a vaccine used to combat HPV. It’s been the subject of considerable discussion since Rick Perry entered the presidential race. Dr. Diane Harper, a professor at the University of Missouri-Kansas City says the vaccine is being way over-sold. NPR notes this is “striking” since Harper worked on studies that got the vaccines approved and even accepted grants from the manufacturers (although not any longer, she says.) She changed her mind, she said, when the vaccine makers started lobbying state legislatures to mandate school children get vaccinated. “Ninety-five percent of women who are infected with HPV never, ever get cervical cancer,” she says. “It seemed very odd to be mandating something for which 95 percent of infections never amount to anything.” Yes, we have certainly covered this issue extensively at CatholicVote and not all opinion here has been uniform.

Rep. Jeff Flake, an economic libertarian who doesn’t care too much about social issues, endorsed former Gov. Mitt Romney, an economic liberal who doesn’t care too much about social issues. Flake is an early favorite to win the GOP nomination for the Senate seat vacated by Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl. Flake upset pro-family activists when he voted to repeal Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell allowing gays and lesbians to serve openly in the military. Arizona has moved up their presidential primary to Feb. 28, so this is considered a “big get” for Romney.

Other articles of interest:

CBS’s Mark Knoller reports that President Obama promises to veto any deficit plan that reduces Medicare benefits if the plan does not also raise taxes on “the rich and big corporations,” according to White House officials. Wow. Raising taxes in a recession? Yeah, brilliant.

The National Organization for Marriage compiled a long list of media outlets which noticed the impact that David Weprin’s vote on so-called “same sex marriage” contributed to his upset defeat to pro-life and pro-family Bob Turner in the race to fill the House seat in Queens and Brooklyn that was vacated by Anthony Weiner.

Republican insiders worry if Rick Perry can win over suburban voters. They wonder how the Texas governor would fare in Pennsylvania and if he’ll make Missouri more competitive than it should be.

President Obama’s approval ratings have dropped below 50% in nine target states that George W. Bush won in 2004, but that Obama captured in 2008. They are: Florida, Ohio, North Carolina, Virginia, Indiana, Colorado, Iowa, New Mexico, and Nevada.

Have a million bucks? You could buy the domain, which has been owned by The Tea Party, a Canadian rock band since 1993 – and they are actually liberal in their politics.



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  • Andy Kirchoff

    I wouldn’t say Rep. Flake is weak on social issues (his pro-life voting record is immaculate as far as I know), nor is he most well-known for being an economic libertarian (though that is, granted, part of his political “face,” as it were). No, Rep. Flake is most famous for being the conservative voice for comprehensive immigration reform and co-authoring the DREAM Act years back. Sadly, that has changed recently, as has his more libertarian leanings (voted for the PATRIOT Act, endorsing Mitt Romney now, etc.)

    He was once one of my favorites, but I won’t shed a tear if he loses his primary or even the general (which, of course, would be to Gabby Giffords)



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