Catholic Cardinal Timothy Dolan has declared himself powerless after New York Governor Andrew Cuomo (D) signed into law a bill that allows abortion up to the day of birth.
While the legislation was applauded by many progressives, it has angered many religious leaders, especially in the Democratic governor's own professed Catholic faith, with many calling on Dolan to excommunicate Cuomo for his "flagrant celebration" of the pro-abortion bill.
Dolan, the current Archbishop of New York dismissed his critics as being on the "far right," and stressed that he personally has little "clout" and is just a "fat, balding, Irish bishop."
Cuomo held a public signing of the bill minutes after the "Reproductive Health Act" passed, moving abortion from the state criminal statute to the health code. The new law allows non-doctors to perform the procedure and allows for abortions up to the point of birth if the life or health of the mother is deemed at risk or the baby is not viable.
The governor especially angered opponents when he ordered that landmarks in the state, including One World Trade Center, be lit pink in celebration.
The cardinal, head of the Archdiocese of New York serving 2.6 million Catholics, also complained that people are looking to him to do something and called on the lay people themselves to “do something!”
"Don't look at me!" he said. "Look at yourselves!"
Cardinal Dolan made his remarks during a discussion with Fr. Dave Dwyer on his program, “Conversation with Cardinal Dolan,” Sirius XM radio.
“On one hand, the left is criticizing me, led by the governor [Andrew Cuomo]. On the other hand, the far right is criticizing me because, they said, ‘Oh, that Dolan, he’s too conciliatory. He ought to get rid of the governor, he ought to excommunicate him, he ought to punish him.’"
“Come on, now!" said Dolan. "That would be completely counterproductive, right? Especially if you have a governor who enjoys this and wants to represent himself as a kind of martyr to the cause, doing what is right. He is proud to dissent from the essentials of the faith. He’s proud with these positions."
"For me to punish him for it? He would just say, ‘Look at the suffering this prophet has to undergo,'" said the cardinal.
He continued, “This is ridiculous. I say to the people too, ‘What are you all looking at daddy here? You better do something!’"
"You do something! Okay?" said Dolan. "I don’t have much clout--some fat, balding, Irish bishop talking about defending the church, talking about how hideous this abortion bill is. They’re going to say, ‘Ho hum, they have to feel that way.’ You get committed, thoughtful, compelling lay people who are speaking up – they got votes, folks!"
"Don’t yell at me! Look at yourselves! You're the only ones that can do it, okay? ” he said toward the end of the discussion.
Watch the full clip below.
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