“Paul Ryan Gets a Boost from Catholic Bishops” said the headline in Politico yesterday, describing a letter from USCCB President Timothy Dolan, the Archbishop of New York. But reading the article makes me wonder if the reporter read the earlier letter from Ryan to Dolan, or an earlier letter from two prominent Catholic bishops to members of Congress last month.

Ryan’s letter is very, very misleading, and misrepresents the papal encyclical he quotes. Given that he’s writing to a bishop about Catholic teachings, he probably ought not to be telling lies. Dolan’s apparent endorsement of Ryan’s letter, then, becomes quite troubling indeed. Either Dolan is aware of Ryan’s misleading approach and is endorsing it to give Ryan political cover with Catholics, or Dolan has been snookered by the guy Paul Krugman labeled “The Flimflam Man.”

Neither is terribly flattering to Archbishop Dolan.