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CAN is an outreach of the Michigan Catholic Conference, the official public policy voice of the Catholic Church in Michigan
November 4, 2016
 

  LANSING UPDATE: SPECIAL ELECTION EDITION  
   
  Vote on Tuesday, November 8  
 
This upcoming Tuesday, November 8, Michiganders will vote on a number of races and ballot issues, including President/Vice President, U.S. Representative, State Representative, members of the State Board of Education, the University of Michigan Regents, Michigan State University Trustees, Wayne State University Governors, Michigan Supreme Court Justices, local judges, millages, and more. VIEW YOUR LOCAL SAMPLE BALLOT NOW for further specifics.
 
  Why does this election matter?  
 
The 2016 election has been a long and divisive campaign season, and there has been a lot of negativity and dissatisfaction going around. But people of faith, in following the example of the Gospel, have a duty to pursue the common good and leave the world better than it was before, including through voting (Pope Francis, Evangelii Gaudium). Every candidate chosen on November 8 will make decisions that impact our communities, whether at the local, state, or federal level. Selecting candidates who are concerned with those most in need, the protection of human dignity, and the promotion of the common good should be an important priority.
 
  What do the U.S. Bishops say about voting?  
 
  • "The Church calls for a different kind of political engagement: one shaped by the moral convictions of well-formed consciences and focused on the dignity of every human being, the pursuit of the common good, and the protection of the weak and the vulnerable."
  •  "The responsibility to make choices in political life rests with each individual in light of a properly formed conscience."
  •  "As citizens, we should be guided more by our moral convictions than by our attachment to a political party or interest group. When necessary, our participation should help transform the party to which we belong."
 
  What issues should be considered before voting?  
 
The U.S. bishops remind Catholics to examine candidate positions on a wide range of issues before voting, saying that "a candidate's position on a single issue is not sufficient to guarantee a voter's support" (Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship). In the latest edition of FOCUS, Michigan Catholic Conference lists issues to consider, including human life and dignity; marriage, children, and families; religious freedom; the preferential option for the poor; health care; immigration, migration, and refugees; education; and restorative justice. At the same time, Catholics must recognize that not all political issues are morally equivalent and thus should not be weighed the same when evaluating candidates. The bishops write that "the direct and intentional destruction of innocent human life...is always wrong and is not just one issue among many. It must be opposed." Voters also are encouraged to consider factors like a candidate's commitments, character, integrity, and ability to influence a given issue. To read more, visit www.faithfulcitizenship.org.
 
  I've chosen my candidates/positions- what next?  
 

To locate your polling place, look up what you should bring with you to the polls, or find logistical information on when voting begins and ends on Tuesday, November 8, please take some time now to visit http://www.micatholic.org/advocacy/2016-election/election-day/.

 
   
 
THANK YOU TO ALL WHO ARE TAKING THE TIME TO FORM THEIR CONSCIENCE, TO CONSIDER CANDIDATES AND ISSUES CAREFULLY, AND TO PARTICIPATE IN THE POLITICAL PROCESS THROUGH VOTING AND PRAYER.
 
   
 
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Michigan Catholic Conference, 510 South Capitol Avenue, Lansing, Michigan 48933 Michigan Catholic Conference: The Official Public Policy Voice of the Catholic Church in Michigan Phone: (517) 372-9310, Fax: (517) 372-3940, publicpolicy@micatholic.org