A Response to Archbishop Viganò’s latest letter

A Response to Archbishop Viganò’s latest letter November 5, 2020

Archbishop Viganò, former Apostolic Nuncio to the United States, has written a new letter addressed to “American Catholics and to all Americans of good will.”  It was published by The Remnant Newspaper on November 4, 2020.

I have commented on Viganò’s letters before, and even speculated that these letters may be written by someone else who is deeply invested in U.S. politics.  I understand that the Archbishop speaks English very well, and has always had a keen interest in U.S. politics.  I do not think the writer is doing this against the Archbishop’s will, but is collaborating with him to advance a particular political and ecclesial agenda.

Before I could generate a response to the Archbishop, I read the response below.  It is written by Dr. Levi Johnson of Greenville, South Carolina.  He is the brother of a priest friend of mine.  Dr. Johnson respectfully and logically refutes many of the Archbishop’s arguments, which parallel arguments found in the news today as the votes of 2020 are counted.

Archbishop Viganò’s apocalyptic style and careless attention to details create more division and confusion.  Here is the response:

With all due respect to his Excellency, the claims in the first few paragraphs are simply false and are dangerous to say in this climate. I’ll take them point by point:

1. The reason that in many states the number of votes seems to exceed the number of registered voters is that there are 21 states plus DC which allows same day voter registration. In an election where record turnout was anticipated and realized, this is no surprise.

2. Mail in voting is not exclusively favoring Biden. This false claim is most clearly seen in Arizona, where the race is increasingly getting tighter due to the counts of mail in votes. However, a great disparity in mail-in votes was anticipated! When one candidate actively discouraged the use of mail-in voting and questioned its safety and legitimacy, and the other explicitly encourage the use of mail in voting and supported its security, one can expect that when counting these votes it will clearly favor one candidate above the other. Further, historically, mail in voting favors democrats.

3. In most situations, the reason that counting was suspended was due to lack of manpower. You’re talking about poll workers in some situations that were working for over 20 hours straight on election day. In some situations in and around Atlanta, poll workers have been working for over 24 hours straight.

4. The fact is, in situations where the Trump administration has in fact filed suit, there have been perceived minor problems with the timing and batching of ballots, most of which have already been adjudicated by Rep. and Dem. lawyers, but the administration wishes to adjudicate further (which is their right!).

5. If there was “the most colossal electoral fraud in history“ why is it that the current legal efforts and perceived fraudulent activities are only focused on the states in which the vote is still yet to be counted? Why aren’t there suits being filed all over the country alleging these problems?

6. Clicking around this website [The Remnant Newspaper] makes it clear that the editors traffic in some of the most fringe and unsupported conspiracy theories that exist on the Internet. Most of it closely associated with, ironically, the very anti-Catholic QAnon movement.

The rest of the article, while perhaps a little bit sensational, I certainly do not have any issues with. It is clear that we are in a battle against powers that go far beyond any elected office, however making baseless claims that have little to no root in reality or facts is dangerous and should be treated as such.

Dr. Levi Johnson

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