New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan explained Sunday why the Catholic Church continues to oppose President Barack Obama's signature health care law, saying it is incomprehensive as it excludes the undocumented immigrant and the unborn baby.
"We've been asking for reform in
healthcare for a long time," Dolan, the former president of the U.S.
Conference of Catholic Bishops, said in an interview with NBC's "Meet
the Press" on Sunday.
"So we were kind of an early supporter in
this," he continued. "Where we started bristling and saying, 'Uh-oh,
first of all this isn't comprehensive, because it's excluding the
undocumented immigrant and it's excluding the unborn baby,' so we began
to bristle at that."
Dolan said the Church supported health care
"because of our religious conviction and because the dictates of our
conscience… And now we're being asked to violate some of those."
health care law, or "Obamacare," requires employers and health care
providers to include contraceptive and family-planning services in their
coverage. To address the concerns, Obama provided for employers to
choose not to provide contraceptive coverage for moral reasons, but
allowed consumers to get it directly from insurers.
when we began to worry and draw back and say, 'Mr. President, please,
you're really kind of pushing aside some of your greatest supporters
here," Dolan said. "We want to be with you, we want to be strong. And if
you keep doing this, we're not going to be able to be one of your
cheerleaders.' And that sadly is what happened."
cardinal also said: "We, the bishops of the United States, can you
believe it, in 1990 came out for more affordable, more comprehensive,
more universal healthcare. That's how far we go in this battle. We're
Obama's health care law has also come
under fire due to problems consumers have faced in the exchanges
operated by the federal government. Healthcare.gov crashed on opening on
Oct. 1 and suffered from several problems throughout the first month.
Consumers said they did not find the available plans attractive enough.
the Obama administration claimed Sunday they have achieved the goal of
getting the website running smoothly, many users are still unsure of its
Dolan also addressed same-sex marriage. "I think
maybe we've been out-marketed, sometimes. We've been caricatured as
being anti-gay. When you have forces like Hollywood, when you have
forces like politicians, when you have forces like some opinion-molders
that are behind it, it's a tough battle," he said Sunday.
The church is "pro-traditional-marriage" but "not anti-anybody," Dolan added.
Asked if the gay marriage debate has been settled, Dolan responded, "I don't think it's over. No. I don't think it is."