UPDATE, 4:45p:Email alert from Eric Scheidler of Pro-life Action League:
I’ve never seen a campaign take off like this!
punishment.jpgPeople across the country are OUTRAGED that President Barack Obama is scheduled to deliver the commencement address at the University of Notre Dame on May 17.
President Obama has attacked the sanctity of life – a central teaching of the Catholic Church – on a WEEKLY basis since taking office.
It’s easy to understand why Obama would be eager to speak at Notre Dame. He’s looking for legitimacy with Catholics….


Obama can see how strongly the Catholic bishops are speaking about the duty of Catholics to vote pro-life. He’s trying to undermine their teaching authority so he can win re-election in 2012.
But what on earth is ND President Rev. John Jenkins thinking?
Why is Fr. Jenkins allowing this beloved Catholic institution to be exploited by the most pro-abortion president in U.S. history?
Whatever Fr. Jenkins is thinking, we have to keep up the pressure on him to drop Obama from the graduation ceremony on May 17.
So today I’m writing to ask you to do THREE THINGS…

1. CALL Fr. Jenkins office.
Lots of people have sent e-mails. I’ve received copies of many of these. But now we have to start making PHONE CALLS – we need to tie up the phones at N.D.
Fr. Jenkins’ number is 574-631-3903. If you get a busy signal or the voicemail is full, try again in a couple of hours – or try again tomorrow.
2. JOIN the Facebook group protesting Obama’s appearance.
Some pro-life students at ND set up this group over the weekend. If you have a Facebook account, please join the new group — already nearing 1,000 members.
3. CLEAR your calendar for May 17.
If Fr. Jenkins doesn’t do the right thing and dis-invite Barack Obama, pro-life groups from across the Midwest — starting with the PLAL – have pledged to protest.
So be ready to join a once-in-a-life-time MASSIVE pro-life protest in South Bend, IN, on May 17.
If Barack Obama had deliberately set out to galvanize the pro-life movement, I don’t think he could have done a better job than by accepting the invitation to speak at ND.
So as troubling as it is to hear about such a scandal, the good news is that pro-life Americans – of all faiths – are being inspired to take action like never before.

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UPDATE, 4:10p: American Papist is on top of the ND scandal, reporting earlier petition signatures were coming into NotreDameScandal.com at the rate of almost 100 a minute. He twittered 35 minutes ago the count was up to 30k. I just checked and it’s at 33.5k.
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On March 20th, the White House announced, as reported by the LA Times:

Obama is sticking with the time-honored presidential commencement-speaking tradition in his first year: one military academy (Naval Academy, May 22), one public school (AZ State University, May 13) and one private school (Notre Dame, May 17).

john jenkins.jpgOf all the private schools in all the world, why did the WH pick Notre Dame?
To be fair, Fr. John Jenkins (pictured right), President of ND, had to make the request and is ultimately responsible, but it appears the audacious Obama is pouncing on the opportunity to continue his assault against conservative Catholics and the pro-life movement while wooing Cafeteria Catholics and the mushy middle on abortion. It worked for him on Election Day, why not now?
But perhaps President Abortion was persuaded by the honorary doctor of laws degree ND is incredibly bestowing upon him.

Ok, game on.
fighting irish.jpgPro-lifers upon hearing the news were immediately outraged. The movement is now in an uproar with plans made already to picket.
(I myself just made my South Bend hotel reservation. Was surprised there were still any rooms left.)
Citizens for a Pro-life Society, led by Dr. Monica Miller, is planning a protest from 12:30p to 3:30p on May 17th near the main thoroughfares leading to the campus. Details to follow.
A website with accompanying petition drive have been launched at www.notredamescandal.com, with over 17k signatures garnered just over the weekend.
Deal Hudson has a new piece up responding to Fr. Jenkins’ anticipated excuses not to disinvite Obama.