Pope Francis isn’t a Democrat (or a Republican)

Millennial co-founder Christopher Hale has a new article at Time. He writes:

Playing political football with the pope is a tradition as old as the office itself. From ancient Roman emperors to Renaissance English monarchs to modern-day Congressmen, politicians have long have used the pope to push ideological agendas. Under Francis’s predecessor Benedict XVI, many political actors in the U.S. tried to suggest that the German pope’s opposition to gay marriage and abortion meant that his priorities and those of the Catholic Church lined up neatly with the Republican Party. One prominent conservative Catholic commentator even went as far to argue that Benedict didn’t really believe his own scathing 2009 critique of the global economy.

Sadly, many Democrats have tried to do the same with Francis. In September 2013, Slate’s William Saletan wrote an essay entitled “Pope Francis is a liberal.” Saletan’s piece followed Francis’s interview with Jesuit publications in which he argued that the Church shouldn’t become “obsessed” with abortion, same-sex marriage, and contraception. The same day the interview was published Pope Francis denounced abortion as a part of the “throwaway culture.”

Francis is neither a Democrat nor a Republican. The politics of Jesus Christ and the Catholic Church don’t fit well in either major American political party. His expected critique of radical individualism in front of Congress next month is expected to push back on the short-sighted priorities of both.

The full article can be read here.