Santorum says liberalism caused Boston's pedophile abuse

Wed 13 Jul, 2005 06:05 pm
Boston, the city with the most prudish reputation on the East Coast? This would be funny if it wasn't so seriously sick. ---BBB

Santorum resolute on Boston rebuke
Insists liberalism set stage for abuse
By Susan Milligan, Boston Globe Staff | July 13, 2005

WASHINGTON -- Senator Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania, the third-ranking Republican in the Senate, refused yesterday to back off on his earlier statements connecting Boston's ''liberalism" with the Roman Catholic Church pedophile scandal, saying that the city's ''sexual license" and ''sexual freedom" nurtured an environment where sexual abuse would occur.

''The basic liberal attitude in that area . . . has an impact on people's behavior," Santorum said in an interview yesterday at the Capitol.

''If you have a world view that I'm describing [about Boston] . . . that affirms alternative views of sexuality, that can lead to a lot of people taking it the wrong way," Santorum said.

Santorum, a leader among Christian conservatives, was responding to questions about remarks he made three years ago on a website called Catholic Online. In those comments, Santorum said, ''It is no surprise that Boston, a seat of academic, political, and cultural liberalism in America, lies at the center of the storm" of the clergy sexual abuse scandal.

The junior senator is chairman of the Senate Republican Conference and is considered a possible candidate for his party's presidential nomination in 2008, if he wins reelection to a third Senate term next year.

''I was just saying that there's an attitude that is very open to sexual freedom that is more predominant" in Boston, Santorum said yesterday. Reminded that the sexual abuse occurred across the country, Santorum said that ''at the time [in 2002], there was an indication that there was more of a problem there" in Boston.

The senator's words sparked instant reaction from Massachusetts political leaders, who ridiculed Santorum's suggestion that priests were driven to abuse children by the city's liberal culture.

US Representative Barney Frank, a Newton Democrat, called Santorum ''a jerk" and pointed out that the senator tried to use the levers of the federal government to block the removal of Terri Schiavo's feeding tube, an act that Santorum likened to ''execution." An autopsy found that Schiavo's brain was half the normal size and that she could not see anything.

''This is one of those people who claims to have had eye contact with a blind woman," Frank said.

Representative Martin T. Meehan, Democrat of Lowell, said, ''There's not much you can say about someone who claims to have read the Bible cover to cover and came away from it thinking it encourages hatred for fellow human beings."

David Wade, spokesman for Senator John F. Kerry, said, ''Sometimes you wonder whether Rick Santorum can possibly believe the radically wrong words that escape his mouth."

Santorum has startled Washington in the past. In a 2003 interview with the Associated Press, he linked ''man on child" and ''man on dog" sex with homosexuality, describing them as deviant behaviors that threatened traditional marriage. Earlier this year, he apologized for comparing the Democrats blocking President Bush's judicial nominees to the Nazi leader, Adolf Hitler.

The senator faces an unexpectedly tough race for reelection next year. Pennsylvania state treasurer Robert P. Casey Jr., the expected Democratic candidate, has been ahead or even with Santorum in recent polls, although Casey hasn't begun actively campaigning.

Casey, like Santorum, is antiabortion, and Democrats contend that the Pennsylvania contest offers one of their best chances to pick up a Senate seat next year.

Santorum, now 47, came to Washington as a House member in 1991 and joined a group of young, assertive conservatives bent on shaking up the institution. Elected to the Senate in 1994, he quickly moved up the Republican ranks. With his vocal stances against abortion, stem cell research, and the right-to-die movement, he has become a favorite of evangelicals, said Jon Delano, who is a political analyst at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh.

''He speaks exactly as he feels," Delano said. ''You either accept it or reject it. There's nothing disingenuous about Rick Santorum."

The Pennsylvania senator recently penned a book, ''It Takes a Family," that blasts two-income families, divorce, cohabitation before marriage, and other social trends he considers liberal ills.

The book, set to be released later this month, blames ''radical feminism" for encouraging women to work outside the home. ''In far too many families with young children, both parents are working, when, if they really took an honest look at the budget, they might confess that both of them don't really need to or at least may not need to work as much as they do," Santorum wrote.

Jay Reiff, Casey's campaign manager, predicted that Santorum's outspokenness might get him into trouble with Pennsylvania voters.

''It's sort of being out of touch," Reiff said. ''For hundreds of thousands of families, the option of having a stay-at-home mother is not there from an economic standpoint. ''It's not because they are bad budgeters or are selfish."

But Santorum's comments about Boston, like some of his other stances, may play well with cultural conservatives in Pennsylvania, who appreciate Santorum's opposition to gay marriage and abortion, political observers said.

''I think he probably has written off Massachusetts," said Senator John McCain, an Arizona Republican who is also a potential 2008 contender.
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Wed 13 Jul, 2005 07:17 pm
My god. This is on the very verge of certifiable insanity. Or, he doesn't really believe it himself and is merely trying to establish some 'reality' for public consumption and political traction. In either case, it makes the fellow completely unworthy of anyone's trust or support.
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Wolf ODonnell
Thu 14 Jul, 2005 05:35 am
Perhaps someone should go up to him and tell him that most of the problems in the Middle East are caused by Conservatives, as far as I can tell.

Maybe if that's the case, Conservatism is the enemy of democracy and must be destroyed.

Rolling Eyes
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Thu 14 Jul, 2005 06:28 am
This nonsense had been going on for many many years in Boston and the govt and police knew about it and did nothing.

Liberal may7 not be the most accurate word to describe the handeling of this situation. Complacency and ignorance may be a better way to describe the coverup.
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Thu 14 Jul, 2005 07:03 am
Santorum is dumb as a fox. His reelection campaign is in doubt. Hes up against the son of a popular past governor . Bob Casey Jr is similarly "anti abortion" and a Catholic and very likeable. Ranger Rick is shoring up his whackadoo base by recognizing that Pa is mostly a conservative state with pods of liberal counties (that contain most of the polulation)
If he can motivate his base and work up a frenzied turnout, he could get re-elected. All this Rush limbaug sound is his attempt to draw attention with the conservatives. Hes actuallyIMO , separating himself from the present regime, by going even further into Conservative mode.

Rick may be scary but he aint dumb. If he survives 2006, hes a sure"intro' candidate for pres in 2008 and a sure deal for 2012.
You want a fuhrer? Rick will give you a Fuhrer. Well be at war with Canada and Mexico. Hes being groomed by Karl's familiars even as we speak.
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Thu 14 Jul, 2005 07:18 am

Karl and buddies aint' dumb either. The extremism of the religious right crowd has been effectively hidden (Reed is particularly astute here) so as not to scare the polyster pants off of middle america. I suspect you are right about Santorum's ploy (I don't know enough about this fellow yet) but it has real dangers for his planned happy future too.
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Thu 14 Jul, 2005 04:05 pm
Errr.. Santorum's "ploy" as you call it was done 3 years ago so it's a bit of wishful thinking to say that he did it to seperate himself from the present regime or to draw any current attention.

The statements were known and talked about in Boston previously but a Boston Globe reporter found them the other day and published a story about it which set off the latest round of discussions.


3-year-old comments by Santorum and recent statements he made connecting the Catholic Church pedophilia scandal with "liberal" attitudes in Boston."
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Fri 15 Jul, 2005 11:40 am
so... senator santorum. how do you account for all of the child kidnapping, abuse, torture and cold blooded murder of children in conservative states like georgia and florida ?
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Fri 15 Jul, 2005 11:50 am
fishin' wrote:

Kennedy was responding to 3-year-old comments by Santorum and recent statements he made connecting the Catholic Church pedophilia scandal with "liberal" attitudes in Boston."[/i]
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Fri 15 Jul, 2005 11:55 am
DontTreadOnMe wrote:
so... senator santorum. how do you account for all of the child kidnapping, abuse, torture and cold blooded murder of children in conservative states like georgia and florida ?

Fluoridated water.
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Fri 15 Jul, 2005 12:00 pm
joefromchicago wrote:
DontTreadOnMe wrote:
so... senator santorum. how do you account for all of the child kidnapping, abuse, torture and cold blooded murder of children in conservative states like georgia and florida ?

Fluoridated water.

there goes the twinkie defense then.... :wink:
0 Replies

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