May 13th, 2009
09:45 PM ET

Live Blog from the Anchor Desk 05/13/09

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Tonight, we'll take you live to Arizona State University where President Obama will address the graduating class. His visit drawing controversy when the school refused to grant him an honorary degree, saying he basically hadn't accomplished enough. We'll also look at Pres. Obama's controversial speech at Notre Dame this weekend. Some believe a Catholic university should not honor a president whose views on abortion and stem cell research run counter to church. Text us your questions on this topic. Just put the initals A-C, your name, location and question in the text and send it to 94553.

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soundoff (496 Responses)
  1. Lynn

    No one shpould refer to the President of the United States as "this guy here". Nor should he state that a model husband and father is the "poster boy for abortion".

    Again the Catholic Church refuses to listen to their constituents.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:27 pm |
  2. Cessy, Chicago

    this is probably the reason why we should have a separation between church and state...

    May 13, 2009 at 10:27 pm |
  3. krowt

    Im not sorry to say this but the catholic church has quite a few wrinkles to iron out, there are many people who do not agree with the bishops and if the students and faculty want him there than get over it!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  4. Dulcie - Denver

    I agree with Rev. Reese. We're not talking about a group of impressionable children. College graduates have the ability to make up their own minds on these issues. Universities are a very appropriate setting for discussion of social issues.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  5. Rebekah

    Thank you SO much for that question to William Donohue about a Jewish person getting an honorary degree from a Catholic school... great question =D

    May 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  6. Caroline, Los Angeles

    Hi Anderson, Erica and bloggers! Did you miss me? I know you did.

    Wow, those kids at ASU are so lucky!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  7. Skeen

    @Jasmine- I agree 100%.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:26 pm |
  8. Brandi - bottom of the boot

    @jasmine, your comment should not be offensive to anyone. Religion should not be a part of politics. we are supposed to pride ourselves in our diversity.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  9. Rikki, Fargo, ND

    Excellent question, Anderson!...but here is a different question, surely not every student at Notre Dame are Pro-Life...so those that are Pro-Choice should they not be getting their degrees either?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  10. Heather - Spokane, WA

    Is there anyone who isnt against partial abortion? It's sickening to think of anyone doing that and Im surprised and disturbed that there are doctors who would actually perform that.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  11. gayle mccauley Malden,Mass.

    Great question Anderson,about should a Jewish person getting an honorary degree!!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  12. Gilby-HI

    Yes, the president should speak. It is important to see what the new grads are made of. I hope they have more backbone then poor Anderson, he cant even respond to the presidents pro abortion stand.
    I wonder how well Obama can duck flying shoes.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:25 pm |
  13. Lori from IL

    The awarding of honorary degrees is an institutional decision - some work by committee review, others have specific requirements., etc.

    I do find it interesting that the Catholics are now "fighting" over whether or not President Obama should be giving the commencement address at ND. President Obama's stance on these issues is widely known and has not changed - why was he invited in the first place - and wasn't it Catholics who invited him?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  14. Michelle in L.A

    Obama at Arizona – Great enough to be invited but not enough work yet for Honorary Degree – give me a break. He should not have went.

    Notre Dame, Catholic -Pro Life, Guess those people are all virgins too right?

    I despise people that focus on 1 issue(Abortion) yet give no thought to pre-martial sex, all under the umbrella of religion.

    Look, I am an adult. A tax paying citizen. I pay the cost to be the boss, & therefore if I want to have an abortion, that is my business. MY Life, MY Choice, MY Business. Are they as P.O at men that do not financially support their children?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  15. Esma

    If you shut people out because their beliefs do not matchy match your exactly, then two things become true: you are behaving in a cult-like manner and you will eventually find yourself alone. What happened to the basic idea of being accepting of others, especially at a University?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  16. Michelle D . Fonthill. Ont

    @Anderson and panel

    What is the difference between human life and free speech?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  17. anthonia-california

    @Kristen-But i thought Obama went against abortion, so how is he going against Catholic princples..?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  18. Thomas Bohm

    Both guests are personally and politically motivated. Believe me we care more for these fetus' than God does.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:24 pm |
  19. Cristina

    Obama definately should not be getting the honorary degree at Notre Dame because he is pro abortion. Why would he want an honorary degree from there then anyway?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  20. Nattada, Houston TX

    @Sarah, Naperville IL..Thanks Sarah. You just say my thought. I do not quite understand waht happens here. I think he deserves the honorary degree.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  21. starr formerly known as vincent

    I believe that Notre Dame is insulting our Pres.

    BUT, i think our Prez can "man up" to the Catholic church and they will look as silly as they are being.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  22. PeggyAnne

    Obama is against abortion until he thinks abortion is okay.
    Makes sense to me.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  23. cynthia

    Full disclosure: my son is in graduate school at ND. If it is inappropriate for the school to award an "honorary" degree to someone who is pro-choice, is it not a greater sin to award a full degree to a pro-choice student? If the university is forced to walk that narrow path it will lose its standing as a great academic institution. I applaud the administration for standing their ground!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:23 pm |
  24. Big robb

    To not let the most important person in the world speak at your graduation, kinda speaks volumes about the education there

    May 13, 2009 at 10:22 pm |
  25. Krasi, Houston, TX

    @Sarah, Naperville IL: one would think that universities/colleges are centers for learning, but it seems that if your learning does not match the learning provided at the institution, then you and your ideas are not welcome.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:22 pm |
  26. Jasmine-Spokane, WA (Spokandyland)

    I despise religion's role in public today.....sorry if I offend anyone.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:22 pm |
  27. Joseph

    The Bush administration she be brought up on charges of war crimes, for torture and killing innocent civilians, and you want keep you image of a democratic counry otherwise what is the difference between George Bush and Robert Mogabe.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  28. leftty

    Who cares about those pictures. We already know torchure exits.
    Righty or lefty. we must take steps that protects our troops. That is more important than paying attention to flip flop.
    As Obama tries his best to fulfill his promises, it will be ignorant to not expect some bumps and adjustments that make sense.
    Right or left do not be fanatic and loose common sense.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  29. christine edwards

    For crying out loud, President Obama is giving a speech about graduating, not about abortion. America is not going to agree with every opinion he has, this is ridiculous. If the Catholics are going to nail him to the wall for his opinions about abortion, perhaps we should expose them to a brief history lesson. Given their track record this should surely shut them up. No offense Catholics.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  30. Rebekah

    i don't understand the big deal with Obama's speech... like Candy Crowley said, other presidents have spoken there and they were for the death penalty. people are SOO confusing sometimes.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  31. Vanessa, TX

    Students @ Notre Same should be excited about POTUS doing a commencement speech.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  32. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    @ Bridget, why is it that every time someone disagrees with Obama it's about his race? Many of Obama's policies are 180 degrees out from Catholic teachings.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  33. susan

    President Obama spoke at Georgetown University and even made them cover the crosses. There was no talk about the fact he shouldn't be speaking at that Jesuit University. Why is Notre Dame different? Or is it just that the press was busier when he spoke at Georgetown? Must be a slow news week.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  34. Amy, MD

    I think that the President shouls still speak at Notre Dame. I am a Catholic myself and I would never impose my beliefs on anyone else. Just because the President has a different view on Abortion does not mean that he won't give an excellent, informative speech. After all, he is the President and we don't give him enough credit for his intelligence. You can't please everyone.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  35. Tom

    Typical conservatives at Notre Dame. Free speech is fine as long as they are doing it. But don't you dare say something that the rightwing objects to. Also, hypocrisy pointed out when GOP speakers were there while violating the death penalty ban that Catholics favor yet pro choice is unacceptable. Gotta love the hypocrites!

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  36. Martina Ilstad

    The best way to handle that dick Chenny problem,is to ignor this person kompl.He did many not human things,and dont give him a voice now.he is a frustated old man

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  37. Robin in Tampa, FL

    I think enough prisoner abuse pictures have already been released ... releasing more would be counter productive at this point.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  38. Thomas Bohm

    Its a war people.
    When we cry for the rights of known terror suspects, whos crying for the rights of the women systematically abused and oppressed by those same suspects, their cousins their brothers?

    Torture is henious, no argument there.

    It seems however, the arguments of those against President Obama's position are personal and politically motivated.

    By the way he is President Obama not just Obama some guy on the street. Give a little respect. We gave Bush ...President Bush that much.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  39. Cristina

    I think Obama should speak at Notre Dame but, wouldn't it be uncomfortable for him going into it knowing the majority of the students there disagree with him and don't want him there?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  40. PeggyAnne

    I am actually glad now that Obama is President.
    I was afraid to vote for him because I thought he was too radical.
    When he got all that anti-war support, and MOVEON.org support, and homosexual support, I was scared of what he would do.
    The boy candidate has now become a man President.
    He is the one!
    American won this month.
    Now if he would only stop being so anti-business.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:21 pm |
  41. John

    Question. AC – You mentioned that the reports about the prison in iRAQ would not have the same impact as the picture.

    What impact do you think the treatment IRAQ or ALKADIA give to their prisoners in picture form would have? How would beheadings go over? How would they mobilize the electorate?

    Bet the ACLU representative would not press as hard for those imagine to get out into the public.

    Sorry for the spelling – large fingers on small phone.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  42. David, Indiana

    I like that Candy Crowley looked into responses to other Presidents, politicians as commencement speakers in her report. Kind of humorous image to end on.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  43. Sean Terwilliger

    I think saying the troops and all of us will be in more danger if the photos of the mistreatment of 'detainees' are released is a cop-out and a total joke. I am a former Marine and I feel we and the troops have already been put in more danger because everyone knows these things have happened. If these photos and all of the other evidence is hidden away then it will just look like a cover-up and will just continue the lies of the past and our enemies will be empowered knowing they are'right'....our government is run by abunch of liars and murderers.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  44. Mike, Syracuse, NY

    @Gail, why is it that you never see the ACLU defending a cause on the right, like the 2nd Amendment. They are an extremist organization with absolutely no balance.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:20 pm |
  45. Bridget, TX

    I can't believe the Catholic Church is protesting PO based on difference of thoughts and opinions. Funny, they've honored other presidents who believe in pro-choice, (I know this won't get cleared through the editing dept.) but I think this has more to do with PO race than his views on abortion.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  46. Jonathan Wilson

    The President should speak, he has after all been invited. He should not receive a degree of any kind.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:19 pm |
  47. Cervantes, Imperial Beach CA

    The photos are important only to frm VP. Chenney, to justify his "legacy",

    May 13, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  48. Larneka

    I am certain whatever the president talks about will be good.. Je is a great speaker and always an inspiration..

    May 13, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  49. Krasi, Houston, TX

    When will people realize that absolutes are not realistic! Abortion cannot be abolished completely since inevitably, there will be a case when it will be the only solution, what would we do then?

    May 13, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
  50. James in TN

    Tim G....Ithink Notre Dame is being political than Obama their the ones not wanting to allow him to come over his views.

    May 13, 2009 at 10:18 pm |
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