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Your Faith, Your Vote
by Christopher Dodson
Executive Director, North Dakota Catholic Conference
September 2018



As people of faith and reason, Catholics are called to bring truth to political life. Faith helps us see more clearly the requirements of a good society, namely respect for the dignity of all human life and a commitment to the common good.

A well-formed conscience equips us to address political questions. “Conscience is a judgment of reason whereby the human person recognizes the moral quality of a concrete act. . . . [Every person] is obliged to follow faithfully what he [or she] knows to be just and right” (Catechism of the Catholic Church, no. 1778). We have a lifelong obligation to form our consciences in accord with human reason, enlightened by the teaching of Christ as it comes to us through the Church.

The questions listed here are to help guide Catholics in their efforts to make moral and prudential decisions about candidates and public policies. Some issues are more important than others. Some concern policies, like attacks on human life, that a Catholic can never support. Catholics can legitimately disagree about how to address some other issues. All the issues, however, deserve our attention.

Find out the candidates’ positions on each of the issues. Look beyond party politics, analyze campaign rhetoric critically, and choose political leaders according to the principles of your faith. To find out who is running for office in your area and where to vote, contact the Secretary of State at www.nd.gov/sos/ (800-352-0867).

Catholics have an obligation to participate in the democratic process. Remember to vote and, no matter what the outcome, become involved in the legislative process. One way to get involved is by joining the Legislative Action Network at ndcatholic.org.

Where does the federal candidate (U.S. House and Senate) stand on?

Right to Life & Dignity of the Human Person

Protecting unborn human life from abortion and committing federal resources to ending abortion?
Preventing tax funding for abortion, abortion referrals, abortion advocacy, and embryonic stem-cell research?
Abolishing the death penalty?
Ensuring governmental compliance with moral limits on the use of military force and a ban on the use of torture?

Religious Liberty

Protecting the right of individuals and organizations to serve the public in accord with reasoned conscientious beliefs?
Making human rights and religious liberty central to foreign policy and aid?

Immigrants and Refugees

Legislation that ensures the integrity of our borders, fosters family reunification, and provides reasonable paths to legal residence?
Providing safe havens for properly-vetted refugees and asylees, regardless of race, nationality, or religious affiliation?

Education

Enabling parents, financially and in other ways, to choose the best educational setting for their children?

Poor & Vulnerable

Providing social and community services, including nutrition and housing, to those in need?
Ensuring access to health care while respecting human life, human dignity, and religious freedom?
Reforming the criminal justice system so that it focuses on restoration, rehabilitation, prevention, and opportunity?

The Economy

Ensuring a just wage, economic initiative, and the right of workers to form associations to collectively represent their interests?
Policies to foster family farms, rural communities, good stewardship of natural resources, and the right of local communities to regulate for the common good?


Where does the state candidate stand on?

Right to Life & Dignity of the Human Person

Protecting unborn human life and committing state resources to ending abortion?
Preserving the bans on assisted suicide, euthanasia, the death penalty, human embryo research, and commercial surrogacy?
Preventing tax funding for abortion and abortion advocacy?

Religious Liberty

Protecting the right of individuals and organizations to serve the public in accord with reasoned conscientious beliefs?
Protecting religious freedom without unduly infringing upon the legitimate and compelling interests of the state?
Preserving the right to contract according to religious beliefs?

Family Life

Fostering family life and the common good by keeping the Sunday morning closing law?
Enabling parents, financially and in other ways, to choose the best educational setting for their children?
Opposing policies that force government agencies, businesses, charities, and schools to accept false gender ideologies?
Treating all immigrants, especially families, with dignity and respect?

Poor & Vulnerable

Ensuring access to health care while respecting human life, human dignity, and religious freedom?
Providing social and community services to those in need, including those with disabilities, mental illness, and addictions?
Reforming the criminal justice system so that it focuses on restoration, rehabilitation, prevention, and opportunity?
Providing safe havens for properly-vetted refugees, regardless of race, nationality, or religious affiliation?

The Economy

Ensuring a just wage, economic initiative, and the right of workers to form associations to collectively represent their interests?
Policies to foster family farms, rural communities, good stewardship of natural resources, and the right of local communities to regulate for the common good?

Go to yourfaithyourvote.org for more information between now and the election.