CatholicVote is committed to holding self-professed Catholic leaders and institutions to the standards of Church teaching. That’s what our Catholic Accountability Project is all about.
You deserve to know exactly where our Catholic leaders stand – both the heroes who are standing up for the truth, and the “zeroes” who cause grave scandal by their words and actions.
Every month, we will hold these Catholics accountable – and praise them when they deserve it.
We ask that you pray for all Catholics in the public square, heroes and zeroes alike.
Peter Wolfgang & Family Institute of Connecticut
Since 1995, politicians have introduced assisted suicide bills in Connecticut 12 times. And every time, the bills have failed – usually not even making it out of committee.
This year marked another failed effort to bring so-called “aid in dying” to the Nutmeg State, and Peter Wolfgang is the single person most responsible for defeating the legislation. The executive director of the Family Institute of Connecticut, Wolfgang has forged a massive statewide coalition of assisted suicide opponents who show up year after year to kill the bills. The significance cannot be overstated that a deep-blue state like Connecticut has held out for so many years when other states – like California, Oregon, and Washington, – capitulated long ago.
Drs. Monique Chireau Wubbenhorst and Ingrid Skop
Testifying at a highly-charged Senate Judiciary hearing titled “The Assault on Reproductive Rights in a Post-Dobbs America,” two pro-life panelists Dr. Ingrid Skop and Dr. Monique Chireau Wubbenhorst challenged the narrative that women need abortion.
“I have treated hundreds of women with compassionate care for both patients,” Dr. Wubbenhurst testified. “The priority is always to save the life of the mother, and that can always be accomplished without performing an abortion.”
Dr. Skop also noted that she regularly treats women who have been hurt by abortion and suffer “anxiety, depression, unresolved guilt, self-harm, and even death from complications.”
In spite of pro-abortion Democratic senators and fellow panelists accusing them of “medical misinformation” and “harming patients” with their pro-life views, both doctors steadfastly defended the unborn – and their mothers – with great charity and an impressive command of the evidence.
Bishop Michael Olson, Diocese of Fort Worth, TX
In April, Bishop Michael Olson willingly faced hostile questioning to testify publicly in support of a bill promoting parental rights in education. At the Texas House Committee on Public Education’s hearing, Democratic Rep. Gina Hinojosa questioned Olson on his stance, claiming he was only interested in obtaining money for “his” Catholic schools.
Olson charitably but firmly corrected her:
I’m testifying for parents to have the money that they’re paying into their taxes so that they have parental choice. I don’t want government money given directly to our schools. I want parents who are participants in our communities and want their children to have a better opportunity … I’m talking about access for these people.
Senator Catherine Cortez Masto, D-NV
Senator Cortez Masto, a self-proclaimed Catholic, used images of Our Lady of Guadalupe, patroness of the unborn, in her 2022 reelection videos. In April, she threw her weight against the Texas ruling to suspend the FDA’s approval of the chemical abortion drug mifepristone.
Joining forces with 239 other members of Congress, Cortez Masto filed an amicus brief with the 5th Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals. The brief claims that mifepristone is “a safe and effective medication” and accuses Judge Matthew Kacsmaryk of “judicial interference” in the FDA’s authority. They claim:
The FDA’s determination that mifepristone is safe and effective is based on a thorough and comprehensive review process prescribed and overseen by the legislative branch.
Nothing could be further from the truth.
30 Catholic Women Scholars
The far-left organization Faith in Public Life released a statement in April signed by 30 “prominent Catholic women scholars” expressing their “anguish as abortion bans make pregnancies even more dangerous for women.”
“Culture wars over abortion have divided our Church, coarsened political discourse and left a legacy of mistrust and resentment,” the statement states. “When bishops describe abortion as the ‘preeminent priority’ in elections, the fullness of Catholic social teaching is narrowed in ways that are exploited by partisan agendas and that devalue the theological and spiritual role of discernment in making difficult decisions.”
Signatories included Lisa Sowle Cahill of Boston College, M. Therese Lysaught, Ph.D., of the Pontifical Academy for Life, and Mollie Wilson O’Reilly, the Editor-at-Large for Commonweal magazine.
The letter fails to mention that the “culture wars over abortion” have also cost America over 63 million lives in 50 years. The self-identified “Catholic leaders” call for “better public conversations,” but such dialogue can only begin from a place grounded in the truth of Jesus Christ, whose name is markedly absent in these women’s statement.
State Senator Machaela Cavanaugh, D-NE
The National Catholic Reporter lauded Nebraska state senator Machaela Cavanaugh for leading a two-month filibuster on the floor of the legislature. The bill in question would protect children from being subjected to permanent genital mutilations and chemical castrations.
Cavanaugh cited her faith as her main motivation, saying that she attended Catholic schools her whole life and learned that “the most vulnerable amongst us are the ones we need to stand up for the most.” She is insistent that this means doctors should be able to subject children to life-altering drugs and irrevocable organ removals in the name of the LGBTQ movement.
Gender dysphoria was once accepted as a condition affecting at most about 0.014% of the population. The idea of “trans children” who were “born in the wrong body” has now been foisted on anywhere from 2% to 9.2% of American teenagers. In either case, we are talking about a nearly 200% to a 920% increase in less than one generation.
Cavanaugh and NCR are promoting the deadly lie that “compassion” means allowing the billion-dollar “trans medicine” industry to prey on vulnerable children and their parents. They could not be more wrong, and as Catholics… they should know better.
Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia
The president of the Vatican’s Pontifical Academy for Life announced his support for legalizing euthanasia during a conference in April in Perugia, Italy. Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia followed up his remarks with an op-ed in the Italian daily “Il Reformista.”
In his article, Paglia admitted that the current teachings of the Catholic Church are clearly opposed to euthanasia, but argued that Catholic moral doctrine can, and sometimes must, change. Paglia should decide today whether he will recant and defend the dignity of every human life… or step down while he reevaluates his commitment to the Faith.