By Debbie & Duane Donahoo
All Saints Parish
As Americans consider their choices in the coming elections, we have a wealth of information on candidates and what their positions are on crucial issues. The data we need to make our choices are widely and easily available. But, in addition to the relevant data, two specific resources can strongly help us make our choices of who our leaders will be. These resources are objectivity and prayer.
In our current emotionally charged political environment, it can be easy to be influenced by candidates’ personalities, speaking style, mannerisms, and emotional media coverage. These and other such factors can potentially divert voters from focusing on the crucial objective criteria that should drive our candidate choices for all offices.
These criteria include:
- What is the candidate’s position/voting record on key legislation?
- What is the candidate’s position on crucial policies?
- What is the candidate’s position on threats to our privacy and religious freedom rights?
- What kind of judges/justices will the candidate nominate or vote to confirm?
- When is war necessary and moral?
Candidates’ positions in this election appear to be more clearly differentiated than in the past, and this should aid us in making our choices objective. They are being very direct and specific about which policy and legislative courses they would enact, frequently taking polar opposite positions. Consider the following examples.
Candidates A and B offer two very different ways to handle border security. A pledges support for tightly controlled borders via legal processes and port-of-entry screening. B promises support for open borders, decriminalizing illegal entry, and free health care, college, and voting privileges for all who come here. In another race, Candidate Smith supports reducing/defunding local police forces, border patrol, and ICE agents, while Candidate Jones strongly supports these public safety officers and functions. A third race has Candidate C pledging to vote for judges that will uphold religious freedom and the fundamental right to protection of life.
Conversely, candidate D pledges to approve only judges supporting abortion at all stages of pregnancy, the state’s right to limit freedom of religious assembly and worship, and compel financial support for conscience-violating policy. Objectivity helps make our voting choices more sound and effective.
Although not often mentioned in public media, prayer remains our most powerful resource in forming our election choices. Prayerful appeal for knowledge, understanding, wisdom, insight, counsel, and courage will enable us to bring our best choices to the voting booth. Our Blessed Mother has called us over the centuries to pray the rosary and ask for her help in following her Son. This will impact not only our daily lives but also our public policy as well. As patroness of the United States, Mary the Immaculate Conception compels us to say this special prayer. A daily rosary, a decade a day, or even a novena will surely help us to make our best election decisions.