The Curious Case of Senator Casey

Last Friday, Diocese of Scranton Bishop Joseph F. Martino accused Senator Bob Casey, Jr. (D., Pa) of "cooperating with…evil" because of Casey’s lack of support for legislation that would block U.S. tax dollars from supporting family planning groups that don’t renounce abortion. Puzzling.

Let’s ignore the muddy philosophical problems of Martino’s accusation – that not voting for something is a form of cooperation – but instead talk about Casey, who opposes abortion.

At first it’s easy to be irritated by Casey’s stance on abortion; the man isn’t shy about his position. In an interview with the Philadelphia Inquirer in 2005, he spoke about Roe v. Wade, saying, "You can’t say you have the position I have and not believe that."  He has a 65% rating from NARAL. Casey voted to confirm both Samuel Alito and John Roberts. He’s against stem cell research.  The list goes on.

Then odd things appear, like Friday’s news article, which are all the more odd when compared to Casey’s supposed position on tax-funded abortion (he’s opposed, apparently). I guess he’s changed his position on that one. Casey also supports contraceptives, and is pro-choice in instances of rape, incest, and for the life of the mother.

There are many theories one could draw about Casey, the easiest to prove being that Casey is in it for the votes, and is now moving towards a more liberal stance now that the Democrats are in charge. Republicans are certainly suspicious of this. Catholic League president Bill Donahue said that Casey is pro-life "In name only."

It’s worth noting that in 2006 Casey ran against staunch conservative Rick Santorum, in one of the costliest elections in Pennsylvania’s history. Casey was "the first Democrat to be elected to a six-year senate term since 1962."

Casey’s inconsistencies on the issues are scary, but do give us some hope that, maybe, he’s trudging towards a pro-choice stance.

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  • colleen

    "Casey’s inconsistencies on the issues are scary, but do give us some
    hope that, maybe, he’s trudging towards a pro-choice stance."


    Casey isn’t inconsistent, he’s just not as far to the right as many of his ‘pro-life’ compatriots which is to say that, unlike the RC heirarchy and the GOP, he stops short of advocating for the avoidable deaths of pregnant women or forcing raped 12 year olds to carry to term the child of her rapist even when said rapist is her Grandfather. Big deal. Just he’s criticised from the  right that does not make him any sort of ally or any less of an asshole 

    I know that we’re supposed to be impressed when someone says that Bob Casey isn’t opposed to contraceptives but I am not. It does not take much political courage to adopt a position held by a majority of the Catholic laity and an overwhelming majority of the American public. My quarrel with Bob Casey is that he wants to overturn Roe and recriminalize early abortions. He’s been as consistent about that as his father was. I have no hope when I see Casey only disgust and a certainty that the Democratic party would throw women under the same bus just as quickly as they’ve done the same to the poor (most of whom, coincidently, are women.). .Bob Casey is just as shallow and misogynistic and nasty as the moron he replaced in the senate.. No way he should be allowed anywhere near policy making on any issue that primarily affects women much less our reproductive health.



  • invalid-0

    He’s probably against abortion in the ame manner former Michigan Gubnetorial candidate Dick Posthumus was…very much against it, but at the same time not to the point he really cares about rattling his saber, with the skeletons of a few aborted fetuses tucked quietly in the extended family closet.