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Questions for Candidates


By Christopher Dodson
Executive Director
North Dakota Catholic Conference
September 2020


In Catholic teaching, the laity has the primary responsibility in political affairs. That means it is your responsibility to find out where the candidates stand on the issues. It is also your responsibility to make sure the candidates take a stand on the issues.

The questions listed here can help Catholics make moral and prudential decisions about candidates and public policies. Please use this when contacting candidates. 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.

Where Does the State Candidate Stand?

Right to Life & Dignity of the Human Person

  • Protecting unborn human life and ending abortion?
  • Keeping bans on assisted suicide, euthanasia, the death penalty, human embryo research, and commercial surrogacy?
  • Preventing tax funding for abortion and abortion advocacy?

Religious Liberty

  • Stopping the government from substantially burdening the exercise of religion?
  • Protecting the right of religious organizations to serve the public in accordance with their beliefs?

Family and Education

  • Enabling parents, financially and in other ways, to choose the best educational setting for their children?
  • Opposing policies that mandate acceptance of false gender ideologies?
  • Ensuring that COVID-19 relief equitably includes nonpublic schools?

Poor & Vulnerable

  • Prioritizing the poor and vulnerable in COVID-19 relief?
  • Ensuring access to health care while respecting human life, human dignity, and the conscience rights of health care workers?
  • Providing services to those in need, especially families facing financial hardship and persons with disabilities, mental illness, and addictions?
  • Protecting families and communities with a criminal justice system that focuses on restoration, rehabilitation, prevention, and elimination of racial and ethnic bias?
  • Providing safe havens for properly-vetted refugees, regardless of race, nationality, or religious affiliation?

Economy and Environment

  • Ensuring a just wage, economic initiative, and a pro-family work policies?
  • Promoting family farms, rural communities, and a just food system?
  • Respecting the right of local communities to manage their own affairs for the common good?
  • Protecting our natural resources?

The
Your Faith, Your Vote website from the North Dakota has tools to help you email these questions to the state candidates for your district.

The following questions are offered to assist in discerning where the federal candidates (Congress and President).

Where Does the Federal Candidate Stand?

Human Life

  • Protecting unborn human life and ending abortion?
  • Repealing the federal government’s use of the death penalty?
  • Prohibiting the use of federal funds to pay for or provide insurance coverage for abortion?

Religious Liberty

  • Stopping the government from substantially burdening the exercise of religion?
  • Protecting the right of religious organizations to serve the public in accordance with their beliefs?
  • Making religious freedom a priority in dealing with other nations?

Family and Education

  • Enabling parents, financially and in other ways, to choose the best educational setting for their children?
  • Opposing policies that mandate acceptance of false gender ideologies?
  • Ensuring that COVID-19 relief equitably includes nonpublic schools?

Immigration

  • Achieving comprehensive reforms that offer a path to citizenship for the undocumented who live in the U.S. and do not have a criminal record, expand family reunification, secure our borders, and establish humane enforcement?
  • Providing safe havens for properly-vetted refugees, regardless of race, nationality, or religious affiliation?

The Poor and Vulnerable

  • Prioritizing the poor and vulnerable in COVID-19 relief?
  • Ensuring access to health care while respecting human life, human dignity, and the conscience rights of health care workers?
  • Providing services to those in need, especially families facing financial hardship and persons with disabilities, mental illness, and addictions?
  • Maintaining and increasing funding for poverty-focused development assistance to poor countries?

Economy and Environment

  • Ensuring a just wage, economic initiative, and a pro-family work policies?
  • Promoting family farms, rural communities, and a just food system?
  • Protecting our natural resources?


When all candidates hold a position that promotes an intrinsically evil act, the voter may take the extraordinary step of not voting for any candidate or, after careful deliberation, vote for the candidate deemed less likely to advance such a morally flawed position and more likely to pursue other authentic human goods.

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.

What We Do

The North Dakota Catholic Conference acts on behalf of the Roman Catholic bishops of North Dakota to respond to public policy issues of concern to the Catholic Church and to educate Catholics and the general public about Catholic social doctrine.
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North Dakota Catholic Conference
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Bismarck, North Dakota
58501
1-888-419-1237
701-223-2519
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