Trump responded to the Pope’s claims, and says it is “disgraceful for a religious leader to question a person’s faith.”
Thrusting himself into the combative 2016 presidential campaign, Pope Francis said Thursday that GOP frontrunner Donald Trump “is not Christian” if he calls for the deportation of undocumented immigrants and pledges to build a wall between the United States and Mexico.
The Pope, who was traveling back to Rome from Mexico, where he urged the United States to address the “humanitarian crisis” on its southern border, declined to say whether American Catholics should vote for Trump.
But Francis left little doubt where he stood on the polarizing issue of immigration reform.
“A person who thinks only about building walls, wherever they may be, and not building bridges, is not Christian. This is not in the gospel,” the Pope told journalists.
During the wide-ranging press conference, Francis also seemed to suggest that contraception may be used to prevent the transmission of the Zika virus and praised Saint John Paul II’s “holy friendship” with a Polish woman.
But it was his comments on Trump that seem sure to dominate the political conversation, handing a gift to Trump’s GOP opponents and opening Francis to criticism that his papacy is too partisan and his policies too liberal. Polls indicate that while Democrats adore the Pope, Republicans view him a little less favorably.
Asked if American Catholics should vote for Trump, Francis demurred.
“As far as what you said about whether I would advise to vote or not to vote, I am not going to get involved in that. I say only that this man is not Christian if he has said things like that.”
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Article Courtesy of CNN and WJW Fox 8 News Cleveland
Picture Courtesy of Getty Images
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