White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships

Five members of the Obama dministration’s White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships have signed a letter urging the Obama Administration not to rescind regulations put in place near the end of the Bush Administration that expand conscience protections for health care providers.

The story is notable because the signatories have been roundly denounced by pro-lifers in the blogosphere and beyond for their support of Obama.  Whatever one thinks of their decision to support Obama (I also supported Obama), they clearly do not intend to let the access that their support has purchased go to waste. 

In addition to the letter regarding the concience protections, Jim Wallis has also spoken out on plans by some pro-abortion democrats to include abortion as part of health care reform. 

Moreover, the pro-lifers named to the White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships have used their influence to convince Obama to support abortion reduction, and have even secure an expanded mandate for that Office that includes abortion reduction. See also here.

The pro-life movement is better off with representatives sitting at the table inside the current administration than it would be if the pro-abortionists hd a monopoly over the President’s ear.  The pro-life democrats in the Obama Administration won’t win all the battles, or even very many at all. But they will win a few, which is more than will be accomplished by simply denouncing Obama at every turn.  It is the nature of a two-party political system for the parties to rotate in and out of power.  For that reason, the pro-life movement is well advised to seek supporters within both political parties. 

Being a pro-life democrat is certainly a thankless calling.  Denounced as a sell out by the right, and attacked by the left as a faux Democrat, you must satisfy yourself with small victories.  But what else is there to do?  Its not like the only thing keeping abortion-on demand the law of the law is Jim Wallis and Doug Kmiec’s failure to vote Republican.


One thought on “White House Office of Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships

  1. I agree entirely with your comment. Too many pro-life Catholics are subject to political tunnel vision… they view abortion only through the spectrum of legality/illegality, and they depend exclusively on one-party Republican rule to bring about a final pro-life victory.

    Their strategy is terribly flawed. Exactly as you suggest, we will ALWAYS alternate between Democratic and Republican governments. Furthermore, the Republican administrations/legislative majorities have done precious little to combat abortion even on the legality/illegality front. While I support anti-aborition legislation as a matter of principal, we will only “win” if we can transform society and construct alliances across the political spectrum. This will take a long time, and – for all their good intentions – the hardliners will only make our work more difficult.

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