Matt C. Abbott
Should Catholics 'Trump' Hillary?; My brief comments on Pope Francis in 'The New York Times'
By Matt C. Abbott
February 29, 2016

It's looking more and more like the next presidential election will be Hillary Clinton versus Donald Trump, though it's not a given at this point. I asked one faithful (retired) bishop, a few faithful priests, and a Catholic military veteran for their thoughts on whether Catholics should support Trump if he does end up being the GOP nominee.

Rene Henry Gracida, bishop emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas, wrote:

"I honestly do not know at this time what I will do next November as I stand in the voting booth. At the present time I do not believe that I could bring myself to vote for either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump, if they are the Democrat and Republican nominees.

"The old axiom that one must choose the lesser of two evils is false since the more fundamental principle is that one ought never to choose evil. I have toyed with the idea of writing in the name of Ted Cruz, if it is possible to do so, in order to prove to God and my conscience that I did not vote for evil."

Father Vincent Fitzpatrick wrote:

"I would say yes, because at least Trump says he's pro-life, and cannot possibly be as pro-abortion as Hillary. Hillary is deeply, deeply embedded in the pro-abortion movement. Also, Hillary will bring 7000 pro-abortion Democrats to Washington with her, and Trump will bring about 7000 Republicans to Washington. A large part of that Republican crowd will be pro-life.

"There's no evidence that Trump longs to go down in history as a traitor, which would be his fate if he takes pro-abortion actions in office. He has been explicit about ending the persecution of Christians in America, and Obamacare and the HHS Abortion Mandate are prime examples of that – and he has promised to end those, too."

Father Richard Perozich wrote:

"The best qualified candidate is one who supports life from conception until natural death, sexual expression between only a man and a woman in marriage for life, and rejects embryonic stem cell research, human cloning and euthanasia – the non-negotiables.

"The Catechism of the Catholic Church rejects socialism, communism and unbridled capitalism. After these, issues on immigration and government spending on social programs are within the preference of the voters.

"Hillary Clinton's statements show that she opposes the non-negotiables. Donald Trump has made aggressive statements that cause me some concern; but if it be between him and Mrs. Clinton, because of his [more recent] public statements in line with Catholic teaching on the non-negotiables, I as a Catholic could vote for him."

Catholic military veteran Gary Morella wrote:

"I've been asked 'How I can trust Trump?' Here's my answer.þ I love my country. I love my sons in the Navy and the state police. Trump loves what I love and will take action to ensure that our military and police are respected not trashed; else, anarchy reigns supreme worldwide which is coveted by the despots in power to solidify their stranglehold on what's left of the free world!

"Here's the bottom line. Without a country whose assault from without and within is welcomed by traitors who hate it, there won't be anything else to talk about.

"Just what is it that is hard to understand about that? None of the other candidates did anything of substance to stop the unilateral disarming of our military both materially and morally, especially those in Congress who had the power to do so. They're really good at talking the talk, but no so much at walking the walk. In fact, I don't recall any of them talking much about what should be our paramount concern for the survival of what's left of a free America.

"So it's easy why I and many vets like me, and per what I'm hearing, many on active duty, support Donald Trump for president.

"I don't agree with everything in regard to Trump. But I do agree that he's open to be educated accordingly by those of us who do see the big picture in terms of the seminal truths of the laws of nature, and of nature's God that the disciples of the devil are trashing as a matter of course.

"Certainly, per the Bible, God used some people that arrogant man would have dismissed out of hand to carry out His Will! This could be happening again with one last chance for our country to get it right.

"Just how do you think Reagan won those landslides to stop the hemorrhaging of our country under the sorry likes of Carter? He did this by appealing and addressing those who had disagreements with him but came around to put him in office because Reagan made them see that they were going to hell with their country per the status quo.

"This is what Trump is doing and succeeding in doing, per my observations. If you're just concerned with preaching to the choir, you turn the election into a crap shoot because you turn off a large segment of voters that would have otherwise supported you. What's so hard to understand about that logic stream?

"Reagan's views changed on a lot of things to include social issues once he started the turn to the right, and he changed the views of not a few others that saw the truth of what he said before HW destroyed everything that Reagan did piecemeal with his 'compassionate conservatism,' which was liberalism masquerading as conservatism.

"Trump has proven to me that he is that man as his bonafides in regard to what counts the most: our military and its vets, the trashing of which ensures the trashing of the country via its national security being no priority at all, are undeniable as I and every other member of the military, active, reserve, and law enforcement worth their salt can see clearly. And any problems that I might have with some of his positions can be dealt with because Trump has shown that he's open to good advice, which is what having a friend like Sarah Palin means."

Understandably, much has been written in the Catholic blogosphere about Pope Francis and his various controversial remarks and actions since the beginning of his pontificate. Click here to read a recent article in The New York Times in which my own brief comments are included.

Pray for the pope and the church.

© Matt C. Abbott


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
(See RenewAmerica's publishing standards.)

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Matt C. Abbott

Matt C. Abbott is a Catholic commentator with a Bachelor of Arts degree in communication, media, and theatre from Northeastern Illinois University. He also has an Associate in Applied Science degree in business management from Triton College. Abbott has been interviewed on HLN, MSNBC, Bill Martinez Live, WOSU Radio in Ohio, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel's 2019 ‘Unsolved’ podcast about the unsolved murder of Father Alfred Kunz, Alex Shuman's 'Smoke Screen: Fake Priest' podcast, WLS-TV (ABC) in Chicago, WMTV (NBC) and WISC-TV (CBS) in Madison, Wisconsin. He’s been quoted in The New York Times, the Chicago Tribune and other media outlets. He’s mentioned in the 2020 Report on the Holy See's Institutional Knowledge and Decision-Making Related to Former Cardinal Theodore Edgar McCarrick (1930 to 2017), which can be found on the Vatican's website. He can be reached at

(Note: I welcome and appreciate thoughtful feedback. Insults will be ignored. Only in very select cases will I honor a request to have a telephone conversation about a topic in my column. Email is much preferred. God bless you and please keep me in your prayers!)


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