- The Washington Times - Thursday, September 5, 2019

Pete Buttigieg, mayor of South Bend, Indiana, on Thursday predicted that there is a coming “reckoning” over the long-running ties between religion and political conservatism.

The 2020 Democratic presidential hopeful said that as long as there has been faith and politics, there have been different understandings on the right thing to do.

“But for the party and the movement known for beating other people on the head with their faith, or their interpretation of their faith, it makes no sense to literally vote to take food away from the hungry, to essentially be practicing the very thing that not just the Christian scriptural tradition but so many others tell us we’re not supposed to do in terms of harming other people,” Mr. Buttigieg said on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

“And I do think there is going to be a reckoning over that, because there are a lot of people I think sitting in the pews, hearing political conservatism all around them, wondering whether that really matches what we’re being told to do,” he said.

Unlike some Democratic presidential candidates in recent memory, Mr. Buttigieg has not shied away from talking about his Christian faith on the trail and has gotten into high-profile verbal spats with Vice President Mike Pence over the issue.

On Wednesday, the mayor framed climate change in religious terms as well.

“You know, if you believe that God is watching as poison is being belched into the air of creation, and people are being harmed by it, countries are at risk of vanishing in low-lying areas, what do you suppose God think[s] of that?” Mr. Buttigieg said at a climate change town hall hosted by CNN. “I bet he thinks it’s messed up. And you don’t have to be religious to see the moral dimensions of this.”

“At least one way of talking about this is that it’s a kind of sin,” he said.

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