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McCain Endorsement Angers Catholic League President

Updated 6 p.m.
By Michael D. Shear
HOUSTON -- The president of the Catholic League today blasted Sen. John McCain for accepting the endorsement of Texas evangelicalist John Hagee, calling the controversial pastor a bigot who has "waged an unrelenting war against the Catholic Church."

Hagee, who is known for his crusading support of Israel, backed McCain's presidential bid Wednesday, standing next to the senator at a hotel in San Antonio and calling McCain "a man of principle."

But Catholic League President Bill Donohue said in a statement today that Hagee has written extensively in negative ways about the Catholic Church, "calling it 'The Great Whore,' an 'apostate church,' the 'anti-Christ,' and a 'false cult system.'"

"Senator Obama has repudiated the endorsement of Louis Farrakhan, another bigot. McCain should follow suit and retract his embrace of Hagee," Donohue said.

Catholics United, a national online group, also blasted McCain over the endorsement. "By receiving the endorsement of an outspoken critic of the Catholic Church, McCain once again demonstrates that he is willing to sell out his principles for a chance to win the Presidency," said Chris Korzen, Executive Director of Catholics United in a statement. "We hope Senator McCain will take the principled position of publicly and unequivocally distancing himself from Pastor Hagee's anti-Catholic comments. Intolerance and bigotry do not belong in American politics."

The McCain campaign had no immediate comment on the statements.

By Web Politics Editor  |  February 28, 2008; 2:06 PM ET
 
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Comments

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Posted by: RONALD KAMOGA | May 10, 2008 2:08 AM | Report abuse

What John Hagee says about the catholic church is true.

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Posted by: cryw stkijm | April 11, 2008 1:13 AM | Report abuse

I am sick of the Catholic League telling us who to vote for. They anger me so much that I am no longer a member of their church. It is ridiculous. Reform MUST come!

Posted by: rookiekf | March 14, 2008 4:27 PM | Report abuse

The smelliest thing about this whole story is that McCain didn't need the endorsement of the interpretorily challenged Hagee. He was dominating in the cacucuses and the christian fundamentalists didn't really dislike McCain to begin with.

I think McCain was using the logic of "the enemy of my friend is my friend" in accepting the endorsement; good ol' fashioned politicking. Good one Johnny, keep the laughs coming!

To the christian-haters on this post: Christians may not condone everything you do, but how much of religion do you tolerate? Next time you spaz out about a religious symbol on public property why don't you review your own frame of tolerance?

Posted by: portsound | March 12, 2008 3:32 PM | Report abuse

I am pretty pyschic. I guess America will have another WASP president. Somebody has to!

Posted by: Shopmonkey | March 10, 2008 12:44 AM | Report abuse

The laws of association defined by mathematics apply to politics......
http://thefiresidepost.com/2008/03/01/politics-and-laws-of-association/

Posted by: glclark4750 | March 4, 2008 7:26 PM | Report abuse

Gee, how will the adoring news media cover for McCain (Bush Lite) on this one?

Posted by: lpettit | March 4, 2008 1:07 PM | Report abuse

It is unreal to me that even though Catholics make up about 25% of the population in the US, it is still ok to publicly bash Catholics. And while I have never heard Catholics bash their Protestant brothers, there sure are a heck of a lot of Protestants out there that say a lot of un-Christian and hateful things about Catholics. That, I guess, only reflects poorly on Protestantism.

Posted by: briannorkett | March 4, 2008 8:27 AM | Report abuse

I am willing to bet my entire mammoth personal fortune that this story never sees the front page of The Washington Post, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, etc.

Posted by: nicekid | March 2, 2008 4:37 PM | Report abuse

The difference, dunnhaupt, is that McCain has gotten in bed with this guy to win an election. Obama has never been in allegiance with FarraNut insofar as anyone knows. It is a purely tertiary by-product of a slim association. McCain has publicly associated himself through functions and the sort with "hatin" Hagee.

I am a Gulf War and OIF2 veteran, and, a Catholic. McCain has lost credibility with me. He is not as independent as he says he is. Lobbyists and now bigots?

McCain is blowing it.

Posted by: ssgmack | March 2, 2008 1:01 PM | Report abuse

This is a really stupid discussion. No candidate should be held responsible for the weird beliefs of every single crackpot who happens to endorse him. That goes for the anti-catholic Mr. Hagee no less than for the pro-islamic Mr. Farrakhan. If the Pope endorses Mrs. Clinton, does that make her catholic?

Posted by: dunnhaupt | March 2, 2008 11:04 AM | Report abuse

I am not surprised - the Religious Right is failing as a political power. Hate can only take you so far, and now it's devouring itself. This liberal Christian will be happy to see them go! I am sick and tired of having to explain that being a Christian does not make me one of their nest of vipers.

Posted by: corridorg4 | March 2, 2008 8:42 AM | Report abuse

I am appalled that these stories about McCain broke on Friday and it doesn't seem like ANY of the news media are going to do anything other than try to put this story to sleep!
John McCain is taking a couple of days off in Arizona to rest?????
I'd submit that he's taking a couple days off to meet with his managers to figure out how to fix this latest blunder of his! So far, he's associated himself with how many colorful characters? But
accepting an endorsement (and proud of it, he says) and money from Hagge is something that should be blown out all over the press and TV before Tuesday's vote. I'm ashamed of John McCain!

Posted by: itsmillertime | March 1, 2008 3:41 PM | Report abuse

Oh, and I'm a right-to-life Democrat who prays at least once a day (usually more) and I o to church at lease once a week.

Posted by: katherine11 | March 1, 2008 1:11 PM | Report abuse

I think Hagee is Donohue's clone. But all the candidates take both their endorsements if they can get them.

Posted by: katherine11 | March 1, 2008 1:08 PM | Report abuse

I'm a Catholic and I think Donohue is a radical rabble rouser. He never stops to think before he spouts off.

Posted by: katherine11 | March 1, 2008 1:06 PM | Report abuse

Although I intend to vote Democratic in the upcoming election, I had great respect for Senator McCain until now. How could he and his advisors not know that John Hagee is (1) one of the leading bigots in America today (2) a con artist who has personally pocketed millions of dollars in "love offerings" from his TV ministry (3) regularly preaches a message of hate and intolerance toward Arabs, Palestinians, and Moslems and advocates U.S. involvement in a war in the middle east. I'm sorry but I think McCain is not being truthful about this and I am wondering if this is the real John McCain.

Posted by: smi2le | February 29, 2008 11:36 PM | Report abuse

If you believe in Almighty God, you are brothers and sisters in faith.

Which Religion or Church you attend is of no matter to God.

How you argue among your brothers and sisters is your human weakness, just like when you lived with your parents and there were quarrels in the home.

Blah, blah, blah nonsense.

If you HATE a person, that IS a SIN.
If you HATE a behavior, that is a beginning of a difference.

It is not sinful to have differences of opinions.

Gods word promotes walking a path toward living a righteous life.

God does not expect us to be perfect, ONLY to strive towards perfection BY acting in a righteous behavior.

I will lean toward a canidate who exhibits a belief in God Almighty and the desire to lead this country with Gods guidance.

I want my President to be in Gods favor.

I want my country to fall under Gods protection.

I want a President who does not FEAR asking for prayers and Gods blessings
for our country.

I think Mike would make a good President.
I think McCain would be an okay President.

I would support either.

The Democrats are too focused on bankrupting ideas.

Posted by: mrs4rd | February 29, 2008 11:34 PM | Report abuse

rmcnicoll - last time I checked, Northern Iraq didn't invade Southern Iraq. We invaded, Iraq. Where on earth do you think your "demilitarized zone" would be in Iraq. Our presence in South Korea has been a bit more amicable than our occupation of Iraq. We fought side by side with the sovereign nation of South Korea to defend against the invasion by North Korea and Red China. It's a much different situation that our troops find themselves in when they go to Iraq, where our distinguished leader promised them and the American people that our troops would be "welcomed with open arms".

Posted by: diksagev | February 29, 2008 9:14 PM | Report abuse

This is part of what has amazed me by the sanctimonious allegiance of right wing evangelicals, Catholics and others who think they have a patent on everything that is moral and right in this world. I grew up Southern Baptist, and am very aware of the extreme prjudiced against other religions, including some of the other evangelical sects. It was extremely embarrassing to have my Catholic friends visit my church, only to be assailed for their beliefs and embarrassed by my teacher who was a Deacon in the church. He was the one who should have been embarrassed about his rude manners and his prejudice. I've heard ministers speak disparagingly of Catholics and other from the pulpit. The racks in our church vestibule were always filled with pamphlets that amounted to nothing more than "propaganda" and smeared other beliefs. I don't recall the title of the ones that attacked Pentecostals or Jehova's Witness (and I am pretty sure that the seventh day adventists were derided also), but I will never forget the one that smeared the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (perhaps because of the alliterative title or perhaps because of close relatives who were Mormons). It was titled, "THE MENACE OF MORMONISM". Is it any wonder that Mitt Romnet didn't stand a chance with the Evangelicals? This must be a very fragile affiliation of churches that have banned together under the banner of hate and devisiveness which has had the likes of Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell telling entire cities that the destruction of their cities by tornadoes and hurricanes, etc. is their own fault because they are "wicked cities"; and we have the "Reverend" Fred Phelps and his flock picketing not only the funeral of Matthew Shepard but funerals of servicemen (and women) who have sacrificed their lives for this country and telling grieving relatives and friends that their loved ones died because this country is too soft on "Homosexuals". For the love of God???

Posted by: diksagev | February 29, 2008 9:07 PM | Report abuse

Who needed that big-butted Rapture-Rusher? How long has it been since he last said, "Ah hay-uv SEE-yinned!"?

Posted by: sawargos | February 29, 2008 7:52 PM | Report abuse

Good heavens, the guy dared to say the Catholic church caused the Dark Ages. What does THAT have to do with electing a President? Besides, it is true, of course. Even in the 1600s they still fought Galilei's rediscoveries of facts which the Greeks had long known 2000 years earlier.

Posted by: dunnhaupt | February 29, 2008 7:17 PM | Report abuse

I'm thoroughly confused now ... wasn't Mike Huckabee at Pastor Hagee's church a few short weeks ago? Didn't Pastor Hagee give the impression that he had already endorsed Mike Huckabee because he was an alternative to John McCain? Is this a case of Pastor Hagee seeing the writing on the wall and doing what's expedient instead of sticking with his own principles?

Posted by: jrobinson3 | February 29, 2008 4:02 PM | Report abuse

Mr Mckain love the war, his barrel pork is in the pentagone.

Posted by: alberto_burgos22 | February 29, 2008 2:50 PM | Report abuse

Mr Mckain love the war, his barrel pork is in the senate.

Posted by: alberto_burgos22 | February 29, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

Mr Mckain love the war, his barrel pork is in the senate.

Posted by: alberto_burgos22 | February 29, 2008 2:48 PM | Report abuse

When the majority of "Christians" didn't stand up and denounce the cynical appropriation of "morality" by the extreme-right-wing Republiban "Christians", they became no different from the majority of Muslims that didn't denounce Islamic extremism. In both cases, being silent is complicity. Does it really matter whether it's suicide bombers or B1 bombers?

Posted by: thebobbob | February 29, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

"evangelicalist"?

Posted by: larry | February 29, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

Bush succeeded in uniting Protestant Fundamentalists and Catholics. Interesting to see the coalition fall apart. Thank God.

Posted by: twstroud | February 29, 2008 2:14 PM | Report abuse

I am a Christian and I disagree with a lot of Hagee's teaching. Christianity is not suppose to seperate but to unite sisters and brothers in Christ. Christ died for our sins and Christ came into the world, not to condemn the world but so that the world might be saved. Right winged conservatives act as if they are judge and jury...the bible says if you judge, then you should be judge likewise and if you condemn then you should be condemn likewise. Most of these right winged conservatives and evangleists are hypocrites and drive many away from Christ. Therefore they will be judge at the end of the days. Hagee does teach bigotry in a lot of his teachings. Christ hung out with prostitutes and theives, etc. So that they might be saved. McCain should be pressured to denounce and reject Mr. Hagee, the same way Tim Russet and the world put the pressure on Barak to denounce Louis Farrakan, even though Barak continued to state that he did not accept the endorsement. Better yet, there was nothing for Barak to reject, because no offer or endorsement was put on the table by Louis Farrakan to Barak. This is another clear example of the racism and hate that even exist in the media world. It's ashame but Barak seem to weather the storm eveytime it hits him...

Posted by: YesweCan1 | February 29, 2008 12:34 PM | Report abuse

Mr. Hagee argues that "the United States must join Israel in a preemptive, biblically prophesized military strike against Iran that will lead to the second coming of Christ".

McCain sings "bomb bomb bomb, bomb bomb Iran".

I'm surprised no one's posted a video on YouTube yet.

Posted by: TomJx | February 29, 2008 12:04 PM | Report abuse

When will John (100 years in Iraq) McCain be asked to "reject and denounce" the anti-semitic John Hagee? If not, you have to wonder about a double standard working here.

Posted by: dee5 | February 29, 2008 11:25 AM | Report abuse

In end times, some Christians will become apostates.Hagee,Pat Robertson,Bob Jones III,these three endorsed candidates who didn't agree with their beliefs and faith.

Posted by: nimfafeo | February 29, 2008 09:29 AM

End Times. Wow. Awesome. That just made my day. I feel the rapture coming on.

Posted by: eor11 | February 29, 2008 10:26 AM | Report abuse

I don't agree with Hagee endorsing McCain,but I agree with his preaching.If you're not a Christian,you will really disagree with him on his preaching.In end times, some Christians will become apostates.Hagee,Pat Robertson,Bob Jones III,these three endorsed candidates who didn't agree with their beliefs and faith.

Posted by: nimfafeo | February 29, 2008 9:29 AM | Report abuse

When did meddling in theological disputes among Christians become a principle of the Democratic party?

The comparison between Farrakhan and Hagee is vacuous. Farrakhan expresses racial bigotry; Hagee, theological disagreement.

Notice how Korzen of "Catholics United" uses the phrase "sell out his principles?" This is the election-year talking point of Democrats against John McCain. "Catholics United" is a POLITICAL group, masquerading as a Christian group. If anybody should be ashamed here, it's Korzen, for using religion as a political weapon.

Once again, it's the Democrats, not the Republicans, who abuse religion in the political realm.

(Unrelated to this topic, please visit my political blog, "Plumb Bob Blog: Squaring the Culture," at http://www.plumbbobblog.com. Thanks.)

Posted by: PlumbBobBlog | February 29, 2008 8:23 AM | Report abuse

It will be interesting to see the media will ask McCain to reject or denounce or do both to Hagee. If they don't, they'd look foolish, if not bigoted.

Posted by: DrSubtle | February 29, 2008 8:06 AM | Report abuse

One of the reasons I was on the fence about McCain was that I admired his willingness to call out "agents of intolerance" like Jerry Falwell (and John Hagee). This is very worrying to me and puts into question his vaunted independence. It's a shame.

Posted by: rjhend1 | February 29, 2008 6:39 AM | Report abuse

Everybody is a hero now a days! Go figure! Hell, I'm a hero, just as Mitt Romney's boy is for campaigning for his day! NOT

Somebody has a clear head - Congrats!! as depicted by these words:

Please forgive my view if anyone takes offense but I don't see John McCain as a hero. To me a hero is someone who does something they don't have to do with great risk to self, doing one's job and that was his job is not heroic. McCain was shot down and captured he had no choice in the matter. To say look he was tortured doesn't make him a hero, just ask anyone in Abu Graib. He deserves credit for keeping to the Military code, but that's all.

Posted by: vixie29 | February 28, 2008 05:01 PM

Posted by: paiaso | February 28, 2008 9:54 PM | Report abuse

WWJD - as I am not a believer in the Christos, I find it humorous that they who profess the Christos are displaying his true spirit of non-love toward one another. Halariious, may you idiots of Christ turn on each other to the point of drawing blood, as the Christ belevers in Ireland recently did. Have at it boys! I'll be over here watching you guys jerking each other off - Hahahahahahahahaha!

Posted by: paiaso | February 28, 2008 9:46 PM | Report abuse

McCain just totally sold his pride down the river. After Bush / Rove invented "swift boating" in 2000 with all their racist propaganda against his little DAUGHTER, he goes back to them. He rejects his anti torture, anti tax cut, immigration (agree with it or not, he believed it was right) beliefs to try to get in good with the group that SLAMMED him. Come on, Maverick? Independent? Sounds like a sell out to me.

Posted by: mreal197 | February 28, 2008 8:21 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Just... wow.

After doing a little research, it's clear that John Hagee is every bit as much of a bigoted sociopath as Bill Donohue. Too bad they cancelled Celebrity Deathmatch, 'cause this one is a natural.

It does make McCain look like a total tool, of course. To now embrace Hagee after (in his 2000 presidential campaign) condemning the intolerant fringe lunatics within the Christian fundamentalist community paints him as a complete hypocrite. Or maybe he really is going senile, which, politics aside, would be a tragedy.

Posted by: whatmeregister | February 28, 2008 7:01 PM | Report abuse

According to Elisabeth Bumiller's reporting, Hagee "argues that the United States must join Israel in a preemptive, biblically prophesized military strike against Iran that will lead to the second coming of Christ...."

Obama denounced Farrakhan's anti-Semitic remakrs, but McCainw ould only say he was "proud" of Hagee's endorsement.

Can you spot the difference?

Posted by: TomJx | February 28, 2008 5:20 PM | Report abuse

Please forgive my view if anyone takes offense but I don't see John McCain as a hero. To me a hero is someone who does something they don't have to do with great risk to self, doing one's job and that was his job is not heroic. McCain was shot down and captured he had no choice in the matter. To say look he was tortured doesn't make him a hero, just ask anyone in Abu Graib. He deserves credit for keeping to the Military code, but that's all.

Posted by: vixie29 | February 28, 2008 5:01 PM | Report abuse

The mainstream media is always happy to trot out Donohue as an anti-gay voice. They probably will not feature him between now in the election if he is now an anti-Saint-McCain voice too.

Posted by: tomsoppe | February 28, 2008 4:51 PM | Report abuse

Left out:

Birds of a feather...

Posted by: Junglered1 | February 28, 2008 4:46 PM | Report abuse

Yo, Donohue!

Pot, meet kettle.
Stone, meet glass house.
Anti-Semite, meet racist.

Take your damn meds, man!

Posted by: Junglered1 | February 28, 2008 4:45 PM | Report abuse

Here's a link to an article on Salon laying out some of Hagee's fanatical, hateful religious views.

http://www.salon.com/opinion/greenwald/

Posted by: tyoung | February 28, 2008 4:33 PM | Report abuse

The point is if Hagee said those things, not whether a commenter likes Donohue or his organization.

Posted by: ajacobs | February 28, 2008 4:26 PM | Report abuse

JakeD: It's nice to see this on the Post's blog. But it isn't on Meet the Press or a nationally televised debate just quite yet.

Posted by: tyoung | February 28, 2008 4:15 PM | Report abuse

Hagee teaches that the Jews deserved the Holocaust because they rejected Christ. And for that reason they are forever damned besides. So I guess this qualifies as strong support for Israel.

Posted by: cmpnwtr | February 28, 2008 4:04 PM | Report abuse

You know McCain is in trouble when he inspires battling religious nutjobs. And just when is Tim Russert going to ask him to denounce and reject Hagee for his hate speech?

Posted by: kschultz | February 28, 2008 3:54 PM | Report abuse

The Protestant bigot Publican base is hating on the Catholic bigot Publican base.

Someone pass me some popcorn, this is going to get fun :)

Posted by: AjaxtheGreater | February 28, 2008 3:49 PM | Report abuse

LOL! How exactly does the "Washington media" ignore this at the same time the WASHINGTON Post carries the story?

Posted by: JakeD | February 28, 2008 3:43 PM | Report abuse

This will be an interesting test to see if McCain's "base" (aka inside the beltway reporters) bother to pick up on this.

Posted by: alibidrain | February 28, 2008 3:40 PM | Report abuse

Hagee is a much more frightening fanatic than Farrakhan.

1) Hagee thinks 99% of humanity needs to be wiped out in order bring Jesus back.

2) Hagee claims all Muslims are required to murder Christian and Jewish babies.

3) Hagee believes Hurricane Katrina was sent by God to punish gay people.

Hagee is a more bigoted, backward fanatic than Farrakhan. The only reason the Tim Russerts of the world ignore this issue is because Farrakhan is black and Mulsim, and therefore is an easy target, while HAgee is white and Christian, and therefore immune. McCain lies down in the mud with dogs -- don't let the Washington Media keep ignoring McCain's ties to the American Christian Taliban.

Posted by: tyoung | February 28, 2008 3:10 PM | Report abuse

Can we keep Religion separate from Politics PLEASE!

Hagee is a Schmuck, no doubt, but c'mon Catholics, WE are above going into the Mud like this.

It is Below Us! ;~)

Posted by: rat-the | February 28, 2008 3:00 PM | Report abuse

rmcnicoll: Is Koffi Annan your hero? He was probably the most corrupt Sec Gen in UN history. Of course he would say the war was illegal, he no longer received his food for oil chits.

Posted by: cowpatti | February 28, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

rmcnicoll:

We lost more troops during the Korean War than in Iraq so far -- we just haven't gotten to the "DMZ Stage" yet in Iraq -- I agree completely with John SIDNEY McCain on this one.

Posted by: JakeD | February 28, 2008 2:52 PM | Report abuse

Donahue needs to get a grip: Doesn't he know that it's OK for white politicians to accept the support of known bigots, while no matter how many times a black candidate repudiates similar support, everybody knows he still secretly agrees with said bigot?

Posted by: JohnY63 | February 28, 2008 2:46 PM | Report abuse

If the Catholic League has joined the Catholic Church in supporting the illegal aliens, and against the immigration laws of the Untied States... Hagee is my friend! I think the Catholic Church is attempting to revoke the United States independence in Foreign Affairs and Immigration at this point in History.

Posted by: bluebirdlane936 | February 28, 2008 2:43 PM | Report abuse

McCain has already demonstrated that he's perfectly willing to associate himself with liars, bullies, fear-mongers, debt-lovers and political smear-meisters. He's been a Bush supporter for quite a while, even after they pranked him in 2000! So of course he'll accept the endorsement of an organization that believes in...in....oh never-mind, you wouldn't believe it.

Posted by: thebobbob | February 28, 2008 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Sheesh. Bill Donohue is a complete crackpot, and his "Catholic League" is a sham organization. Why is the Post bothering with anything he says? Next thing you know, we'll be reading about who Fred Phelps is endorsing.

Sen. McCain can only benefit by being slammed by Donohue. In fact, it almost makes me wanna vote for 'im myself.

Posted by: whatmeregister | February 28, 2008 2:27 PM | Report abuse

McCain "Was Wrong about VietNam", NOW "Wrong About IRAQ"!

When he said the U.S. might stay in Iraq for 100 years, Senator John McCain(R-Ariz.) explained he was referring to the kind of military presence the U.S. has had in Japan, Germany, and South Korea since the mid-20th century.

Does this mean McCain fails to grasp the very different circumstances that caused the U.S. to occupy those countries as opposed to the war on Iraq?

The Axis nations had made aggressive war on America and the U.S. had every right to occupy them after it conquered them. It also had a U.N. mandate to defend South Korea from the aggression of the Communist North. It was America's business to be in those countries. America was defending itself or, as in the case of South Korea, a nation that had been the victim of aggression.But the U.S. is the aggressor against Iraq. Former UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan called the war "illegal." The preponderant majority of Iraqis, surveys report, want the U.S. to get out now.

by Sherwood Ross http://www.opednews.com

Posted by: rmcnicoll | February 28, 2008 2:19 PM | Report abuse

John McPander will regret his brown-nosing of the religous-right.

He should be ashamed.

Posted by: rust1d | February 28, 2008 2:17 PM | Report abuse

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