Notre Dame President Father Jenkins told reporters in January 2010 that the decision to host Barack Obama, the most radical pro-abortion president in history, at commencement in 2009 was an honor and a success.
Despite Catholic outrage over the University of Notre Dame’s 2009 invitation to President Barack Obama to address its graduates, the University has again invited the President to speak on campus as a candidate for reelection.
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From the Notre Dame news release
The University of Notre Dame’s president, Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., and student body president Brett Rocheleau have joined in inviting both President Barack Obama and Republican presidential nominee Gov. Mitt Romney to speak at the University during the fall election campaign.
Continuing a long-standing tradition, Father Jenkins and Rocheleau addressed letters to each of the presidential aspirants, offering Notre Dame as a “forum for serious political discussion” on important issues facing the nation. The intent of the invitations, which include the candidates’ running mates, is to provide the campus community a firsthand impression of the contenders and their messages.
The tradition of election-year invitations to presidential and vice presidential candidates was established 60 years ago by Rev. Theodore M. Hesburgh, C.S.C., in his first year as Notre Dame’s president. That year, both Dwight Eisenhower and his Democratic opponent, Adlai Stevenson, spoke at the University.
Other candidates who have accepted the invitation through the years include Richard Nixon, Henry Cabot Lodge, Warren Miller (a Notre Dame alumnus), Edmund Muskie, George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and Joe Lieberman.
More than 367,000 individuals signed The Cardinal Newman Society’s petition opposing President Obama’s 2009 commencement address and honorary degree from Notre Dame, and 83 Catholic bishops publicly criticized the honor.
Father Jenkins and Notre Dame sued the Obama Administration over their anti-Christian HHS rule in May.