Prof. Douglas Kmiec of Pepperdine University was the most visible Catholic apologist for Barack Obama in last year's presidential election. During that time, I frequently blogged about my profound disagreement with his pro-Obama advocacy, stemming from a false articulation and exposition of Catholic prudential principles.
After Obama was elected, Dr. Kmiec was awarded the ambassadorship to the Catholic nation of Malta.
Now, in his first interview with the Times of Malta, Dr. Kmiec displays what I can only describe as a complete intellectual meltdown. He describes his first encounter with Mr. Obama:
"When I thought about all these things, I thought 'this is my catechism come to life' because we are called to each of these things in the social teachings of the Church."
It is for that reason, Prof. Kmiec says, that he was convinced he had found a person of intelligence who had articulated a set of views and policies he could easily support.
Come again - the most pro-abortion, pro-same-sex marriage president in history, and Dr. Kmiec sees him as a "catechism come to life"? By that definition, what pro-abortion, pro-same-sex marriage politician is not a catechism come to life? Does Dr. Kmiec have no sense of objective assessment? Do words and actions mean anything to him? Or is someone "pro-life" simply through a subjective self-assessment with no correspondence to reality?
Dr. Kmiec's support of Obama has become more extreme as the evidence to support his views about the President have become more impossible to substantiate. If Dr. Kmiec truly thought this about Mr. Obama when he first met him, why did he withhold such high praise until now?
I would suggest it is because Dr. Kmiec is going for broke. After all, no one takes him seriously now who does not already agree with his unstated first principles (that abortion is a reality we just have to "live with", for instance) - so why not become explicit about how warped is his integration of Catholic moral teaching and prudential instruction?
I mean, what other conclusion can one come to when you read passages like this:
Prof. Kmiec admits that this approach to abortion is not the ideal solution, saying that poverty or not being married is no excuse to take the life of a child. However, he believes one should be realistic about the problem and if the abortion rate could be reduced - and some studies point out that tackling poverty could lead to fewer abortions - "this seems to me a good interim step".
"I prayed on this," he explains, pointing out that Pope John Paul II had said that Catholics must be clear on their stand on abortion but also that people in political life could sometimes do less than they would like to do as long as there were moves towards the protection of life.
"Mr Obama has taken some steps towards this, perhaps not as fast as some would like," he says.
This is delusional. Mr. Obama has "taken steps towards the protection of life ... not as fast as some would like" in Dr. Kmiec's view? In fact, Mr. Obama has taken steps in the opposite direction. And fast.
Consider: Mr. Obama has chosen to fund oversees abortions at US taxpayer expense. He has destroyed President Bush's faith advisory board and populated it with pro-abortion representatives. He has appointed not a single pro-life Catholic or political figure to any position of responsibility in his administration. He continues to lie about the existence of abortion provision in his multiple health care provisions (a fact verified by multiple mainstream news media organizations). He has not lifted a single finger when Democrats in Congress have thwarted repeated attempts by Republicans to exclude the expansion of abortion funding and coverage from these health care plans. He has not put a single conscience clause provision into writing. His Democrat-controlled Congress is poised to pass legislation that will drastically expand the federal funding which Planned Parenthood and other abortion mega-providers will receive annually. He has ended the federal ban on embryonic stem cell research. And these concrete examples are only those which come immediately to mind.
I was at the debate on life issues between Dr. Kmiec and Dr. Robert George at the National Press Club here in Washington DC earlier this summer. At one point, Dr. George asked Dr. Kmiec to name a single pro-life initiative that Dr. Kmiec knew Mr. Obama has proposed or supported. Dr. Kmiec could not. It was pitiful.
This interview is also pitiful, as are the continued attempts by pro-Obama Catholics who try to argue that Mr. Obama - despite the overwhelming evidence to the contrary - is a pro-life politician. But Dr. Kmiec and his friends have learned that the best way to lie, is to repeat the lie.
And so, here we are, with more lies, or at least delusion.
Either way, I hope that sane individuals who have witnessed Kmiec's meltdown are taking note.