Family advocate James Dobson, widely considered an important GOP rainmaker, says he will not vote for former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani under any circumstance in the upcoming presidential elections because of his positions on abortion, domestic partnerships for homosexual couples and other moral issues.
Dobson says today in an exclusive WND column, speaking strictly as a private citizen, “I cannot, and will not, vote for Rudy Giuliani in 2008.”
“It is an irrevocable decision,” says the founder and chairman of Focus on the Family. “If given a Hobson’s – Dobson’s? – choice between him and Sens. Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama, I will either cast my ballot for an also-ran – or if worse comes to worst – not vote for the first time in my adult life.”
Dobson says, “My conscience and my moral convictions will allow me to do nothing else.”
“How could Giuliani say with a straight face that he ‘hates abortion,’ while also seeking public funding for it?” Dobson asks in his commentary. “How can he hate abortion and contribute to Planned Parenthood in 1993, 1994, 1998 and 1999? And how was he able for many years to defend the horrible procedure by which the brains are sucked from the heads of a viable, late-term, un-anesthetized babies? Those beliefs are philosophically and morally incompatible. What kind of man would even try to reconcile them?”
While Dobson does not endorse candidates in his role with Focus on the Family, he told a talk radio host in January he would not back Arizona Sen. John McCain for the Republican nomination.
“Speaking as a private individual, I would not vote for John McCain under any circumstances,” he said.
In March, Dobson drew criticism after a U.S. News and World Report story said Dobson “appeared to throw cold water on a possible presidential bid by former Sen. Fred Thompson while praising former House Speaker Newt Gingrich, who is also weighing a presidential run. …”
Dobson claims the magazine mischaracterized his remarks reported as disparaging of Thompson and the potential presidential candidate’s Christian faith.
Reporter Dan Gilgoff quoted Dobson saying of Thompson, “Everyone knows he’s conservative and has come out strongly for the things that the pro-family movement stands for, [but] I don’t think he’s a Christian; at least that’s my impression.”
A statement by Focus on the Family said Dobson did not mean to disparage Thompson.
“His words weren’t intended to represent either an endorsement of former Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich or a disparagement of former Sen. Fred Thompson,” the statement said.
“Dr. Dobson appreciates Sen. Thompson’s solid, pro-family voting record and his position that Roe v. Wade was wrongly decided.”
Dobson, according to Focus on the Family, was “attempting to highlight that to the best of his knowledge, Sen. Thompson hadn’t clearly communicated his religious faith, and many evangelical Christians might find this a barrier to supporting him.”
Dobson told Gilgoff he had never met Thompson and wasn’t certain that his understanding of the former senator’s religious convictions was accurate.
“Unfortunately, these qualifiers weren’t reported by Mr. Gilgoff,” the group’s statement said. “We were, however, pleased to learn from his spokesperson that Sen. Thompson professes to be a believer.”
Focus on the Family also clarified that Dobson did not excuse Gingrich’s “past moral failures,” including an affair that ended his second marriage. Gingrich spoke to Dobson of his family life in an interview on the group’s daily radio show.