Stephen Schneck: The Complex Catholic Vote

Stephen Schneck is co-chair of Catholics for Obama. He is also director of the Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies at the Catholic University of America. Schneck talks about the importance and the complexity of Catholic voters and how Catholics can reconcile supporting President Obama despite his abortion position and his administration’s policy directing employers to provide free contraceptive services.


  • pete

    Such Catholics fail to see the threat; they are naive and optimistic. All the signs are there in Obama: the Marxist tactics, the preference for Islam, the deceptions, cult of personalty, appeal to emotion, the meteoric rise of an unknown politician of no experience and no accomplishments. But above all the lack of a supernatural awareness governing all of one’s thought.

  • Dr. C. L.

    What is so complex about the “Catholic” vote?

    Are you for life? Life for the most vulnerable? For the aged? For all citizens? Or are you for death?
    The death of America?

    Are you for “life” of all citizens in America? Has there been an improvement in “life: for Americans in the last four years?

    Then you simply vote for life.

    There is nothing complex about this.

    You simply vote for life – Catholic, non-Catholic, Black, White, Democrat or Republican – No matter …


  • J M Butk

    If this twisted logic is what they teach at CUA, keep your kids far, far away!

  • Becky

    In the previous responses, the writers’ are not responding to the points Schneck is making, but repeating their own rhetoric – - as if repeating it over and over will explain WHY they feel Schneck’s points are off-base or not true.

    And as for the writer who asked if this is CUA’s twisted logic, etc., then I would ask aren’t Catholics allowed to have differing opinons? Is everyone who interprets something differently “twisted” or evil? What kind of radical dogma is that? Sounds like something the Taliban would write.

  • Carol

    No, Becky, it is something that the Holy Father would write!

  • Mr B

    1) Though I agree in his overall break down it does point to the fact that not everyone who claims to be catholic is voting catholic (I find 70% Hispanic vote questionable); I suspect all Catholics belong to a culture, so what he means by “cultural catholic” are those without any faith, lukewarm, or maybe just not that engaged; the scriptures & teachings of the church are relegated to the secular media & secular “authorities” –incl. those who claim religious titles.
    2) I am not sure what he means by “Obama is religious”, so are the Muslim who have been murdering Christian in Sudan, Libya, Syria, and Egypt & on-and-on. I don’t really care if he is religious it does not necessitate a belief in religious freedom or that he has any real since of God. Obama, the master speech giver, has a number clips floating around, albeit some edited, that clearly show a distain for Christianity.
    3) Anyone who believes that religious freedom is not an issue, or that this administration has not created an assault or, at the very least, fostered an assault on religious freedom is not paying attention to the legal cases that are occurring all over the country, they are just apathetically listening to the secular media.
    4) Most Catholics have been advocates for universal healthcare but that does mean the Healthcare Act is a good idea in its present form or good for society or that it will work. On the other hand, republicans are nuts wanting to continue the same old parasitical practices without any real regulation. I have listened to some pretty good ideas on how to reform Medicare but it’s never come from the democrat or republican parties. The value of the Healthcare Act is to be determined and to praise Obama now would be like giving him a Nobel Prize before he has done anything deserving.
    5) Finally, I can conceive of ways in which Catholics could morally vote for Obama, most if not all of them require moral ignorance or denial because Obama has been so clear not only in words but in actions – he is Pro-Abortion to the detriment of Pro-Life 5a) I know of no evidence to justify the claim that the Healthcare Act will reduce abortions any more than condoms reduced teen pregnancies & STD’s – I tend to think the evidence points in the other direction. In the end I can’t support a candidate that is trying to get me to pay for the dismembering of children, human person, while they are still in the womb and treating fertility as a disease. You cannot claim to be pro-life via healthcare & housing provision, if you seek to achieve this goal by taking lives to accomplish it -note any claim that the children are unwanted is irrelevant.
    –also I would note, not all things are open to opinion not even in the secular community.
    And though the language of “twisted” or evil” might be graphic it is provoked when someone is clearly put forward as Catholic authority when they really are just mirroring secular authorities misrepresenting moral imperatives by trivializing teachings of Catholic church.

  • Mr B

    Note a correction: “but that does mean the Healthcare” should be “but that does not mean the Healthcare “

  • Robert Kraft

    My initial exposure to Mr Schneck was yesterday (9/18/2012), with Mr Schneck addressing “The Complex Catholic Vote”. As a senior-senior practicing Catholic, I was quite/very surprised to see the support for Obama. I would be in general agreement with Mr B’s 9/15 comments. I cannot help but wonder is the video concentrating on Mr Schneck’s speaking was edited. Seems to me there were many ‘breaks’ in the presentation. I consider myself to be an Independent voter and would like some reply. Thank you.

  • Mary

    I had no idea who Stephen Schneck was until seeing a quote of his posted at my church. So I looked him up and was initially pleased to see a Catholic teaching public policy. I am a current graduate student of Public Administration and have always felt outnumbered by more liberal views both in the classroom and in the field.

    However, upon watching this video, it is clear that Dr. Schneck is NO Catholic. Once again, the liberal, pro-choice, anti-constitutional agenda is shoved down students’ throats – and this time, in the name of Catholicism. No, Dr. S – the true Catholic vote is not ‘complex’ at all. Nice rationalization – but no dice.