Chris Wallace Fox News video interview: Fr. Pavone vs Fr. McBrien at Notre Dame

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Transcript: Fathers McBrien and Pavone on Fox News Sunday

Sunday, May 17, 2009

The following is a rush transcript of the May 17, 2009, edition of “FOX News Sunday With Chris Wallace.” This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

CHRIS WALLACE, HOST: Joining us now, two members of the church with sharply different views. Father Richard McBrien, a professor of theology at Notre Dame, supports the decision to honor the president. Father Frank Pavone, director of Priests for Life, has been leading protests against Mr. Obama.

Gentlemen, as we said, Notre Dame has a long history of inviting presidents to speak there. Back in 2001, George W. Bush, the new president, spoke. And of course, as governor of Texas, that state had conducted 152 executions, which the church condemns.

Father Pavone, can’t Notre Dame invite a president of the United States to speak without signing on to all of his policies?

FATHER FRANK PAVONE: We’re not here disagreeing with the president because he contradicts Catholic teaching or what it means to be Catholic. The problem is he contradicts what it means to be president.

This is about abortion. And in 2008 there were 37 executions. Just today there will be 37 babies at 21 weeks of gestation or more — the size of a large banana — dismembered, crushed, thrown in the garbage. And the president is not raising his voice, recognizing their right to be protected. That’s the problem.

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