In response to Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s (D-N.Y.) signing of New York’s new abortion law that removes restrictions on late-term abortions and makes it legal to abort preborns until the moment of birth, Rev. Franklin Graham is calling on Catholic leaders to “take a moral stand” against the Catholic governor and excommunicate him from the Roman Catholic Church.
Graham backed Catholic leaders’ urging to excommunicate Cuomo in his re-tweet of an article where they wanted to ban the Democratic governor for his “flagrant celebration of [a] pro-abortion bill.”
Catholic Bishop Rick Stika of Knoxville, Tennessee, assured Catholics in the article that if it were up to him, he would excommunicate Cuomo over his unbiblical decision.
“This vote is so hideous and vile that it warrants the act,” Stika wrote in the Fox News article.
However, not all Catholic leaders agreed with this take on the situation, as the Catholic archbishop of New York, Cardinal Timothy Dolan, did not think such a measure should be taken, contending that it would not make Cuomo change his mind and insisting that the abortion lobby would use it as “ammunition.”
“Cuomo is not going to be moved by this, so what’s the use?” Dolan asked, according to Breitbart News.
Don’t turn a blind eye
Graham was not in agreement with Dolan and called upon him to take a bold stand against the governor – even if it does not immediately change things for the better.
“I call on my friend Cardinal Dolan to take a moral stand,” the president of the Billy Graham Evangelistic Association and Samaritan’s Purse wrote in a Tuesday post on Facebook. “Whether it moves the governor’s calloused heart or not, it will have a great impact on not only the Church in New York, but on the Church worldwide. My question would be – if the Church loses their moral voice, then what’s the use? It’s about standing for right over wrong, good over evil.”
Besides Stika, Catholic bishops in New York horrified and flustered over the law took aim at Cuomo for signing it.
“Our governor and legislative leaders hail this new abortion law as progress,” the bishops wrote in their open letter to Cuomo, according to CBN News. “This is not progress. Progress will be achieved when our laws and our culture, once again, value and respect each unrepeatable gift of human life – from the first moment of creation to natural death.”
Other Catholics agreed, too.
“If we Catholics really believe what we say when we talk about heaven, hell and the dignity of the unborn, @CardinalDolan should – after exhausting all other means of correction – excommunicate @andrewcuomo,” Matthew Schmitz tweeted last week.
But Cuomo discounted the critique by New York bishops and insisted that he does not govern as a Catholic and touted his support of the infamous 1973 United States Supreme Court decision, Roe v. Wade, that legalized abortion across the country, resulting in the death of more than 60 million preborn babies since then.
“They want to roll back Roe v. Wade,” Cuomo told WAMC Northeast Public Radio’s The Roundtable with Alan Chartock. “They want to go back before Roe v. Wade. We’re saying no. We are going to incorporate Roe v. Wade into our laws and I’d like to incorporate it into the Constitution.”
He then blasted Catholic leadership for adhering to the biblical principal of the sanctity of human life.
“The Catholic Church does not believe in a woman’s right to choose,” Cuomo continued. “Yes, I understand their religious view. I understand their religious view when it comes to marriage equality, but I’m not here to legislate religion. I happen to be Catholic, but you’re not a Catholic governor or a Jewish governor or a Muslim governor. You’re just governor.”
Dobson in agreement
Family Talk and the James Dobson Family Institute Founder James Dobson also condemned Cuomo for signing on his support for New York’s Reproductive Health Act, calling it a heathen measure.
“[The new law is] pure barbarism on a scale rarely seen since the Middle Ages,” the Christian author, family counselor and radio broadcaster asserted after the bill was signed last week, according to WND. “It is not overstating the matter to say I am horrified by the New York State Senate’s vote to pass the euphemistic Reproductive Health Act (RHA). This bill is not about reproductive health at all.”
He went on to blast the law as taking New York a step backwards – in terms of morality.
“This legislation expands upon New York’s already liberal abortion laws – which allow for on demand abortion up until 24 weeks,” Dobson added. “The RHA’s main aim is to justify abortions throughout a pregnancy’s entire term based on the overly broad exceptions defined in Roe’s companion case, Doe v. Bolton – including such subjective measures as a woman’s emotional and psychological wellbeing. Late-term abortions had only previously been authorized in New York if done to save the life of the mother.”
Dobson contended that the problematic law opens up the Pandora’s Box regarding abortion in New York – which he noted was already recognized as America’s abortion capital.
“[The bill] also allows non-physicians to commit abortions and decriminalizes abortion by moving it from the criminal code to the public-health code,” Dobson pointed out. “New York is symbolically doubling-down on the killing of the unborn on the 46th anniversary of Roe v. Wade– casting an even darker shadow on a date already shrouded in tragedy and the loss of innocent life.”
Read more at Graham to Catholics: Expel Cuomo over NY abortion law.