OPINION: There’s Nothing Wrong With Catholics Supporting Trump
An evangelical pastor recently wrote the following after explaining why evangelicals should stop voting Republican:
So often in our country, Christian faith implies Republicanism, but I want to challenge the idea that faith is partisan. My faith does not call me to be Republican or Democrat. My faith calls me to love God and love my neighbor as I love myself. I am called to vote for the common good, for justice and humanity.
While it’s true that faith doesn’t require anyone to support one particular political party, it should be a motivator for the issues that many vote on.
And with Catholics generally making up 25 percent of the electorate in federal elections and evenly splitting between Republicans and Democrats, it’s time to talk about why it’s possible to be Catholic and support President Trump.
It’s not faith that intrudes in the voting booth, but it’s public policy that directly impacts larger issues and people of faith that demands response.
Even so, one can recognize that there are plenty of reasons for people of faith to vote Democrat, particularly if the issues most important to you include support for looser immigration (if not open borders themselves) or heavier government intervention to pick and choose, which type of energy is allowed or conducting a witch hunt against organizations that oppose the environmentalist agenda.
Or perhaps a voter believes that Democrat economic policies of a government-mandated minimum wage,forced unionization, and socialized medicine are the best way to bring about a fair economic system; that conclusion is debatable, but certainly some assert such policies are aimed at a fairer economy, whether or not that’s the actual end result (a debate for another day).
But consider this: just as there are justifiable reasons people of faith can vote Democrats, there are justifiable reasons why people of faith can vote for Republicans.
And the pastor’s argument that evangelicals are voting Republican because of the community they belong to is just as flawed as the argument sometimes heard in conservative circles that black Democrats are only voting that way because of their racial identity — even though there are plenty of reasons why black people can vote Democrat out of their actual support for Democrat policies, not out of a blind following (perhaps they want gun control or favor some other Democrat policy).
And here’s why as a faithful Catholic and believe that they are living out their faith.
First, President Trump has followed through on picking judicial nominees committed to the protection of religious liberty, something that President Sue-The-Little-
In selecting Neil Gorsuch as his first Supreme Court pick, a federal judge who had ruled in favor of Hobby Lobby in a related case over the Obamacare birth control mandate, Trump showed he supported the rights of people of all faiths to act according to their consciences.
Second, Trump’s immigration policy, while not perfect, at least lays out a series of principles that should be acceptable to Catholics.
His immigration policy is still incredibly welcoming to new immigrants (one proposal would have cut the number of green cards in half to half a million a year while granting legal status to millions of immigrants brought here illegally as children) and Trump rightly enforces the idea that countries have a right to control their borders.
Third, Trump has shown a commitment to advancing a fairer justice system in the courts and on campuses, through several of his picks and policy changes.
His Secretary of Education, Betsy DeVos, has done great work pushing to reform how Title IX sexual assault and sexual harassment proceedings are handled, proceedings which may, under the rules pushed by Obama, have disproportionately harmed black males.
At least one of his judicial picks, Amul Thapar, ruled in favor of a student’s due-process rights in a Title IX hearing. He has also signaled his support for reforming marijuana laws and held a recent discussion with Kanye West about which ended up discussing problems in the criminal justice system.
Finally, and most importantly, Trump has shown himself to be strongly against abortion, saying he would sign legislation ending abortions after twenty-weeks, pursuing Title X policy changes making it harder for abortion vendors to get tax monies, appointing aforementioned pro-life judges and justices and reinstating the Mexico City Policy.
There are justifiable reasons for Christians to support Democrats. But as a Catholic, I’ve found Trump’s words and actions have generally be aligned with a Catholic point of view on some significant issues (not to say that Trump’s immigration or economic plans are the only acceptable Catholic point of view).
Evangelicals and other people of faith are not misguided in voting for Republicans; they should be proud to support Trump because of his policies, not despite them.
Matt Lamb is the Director of Communications for Students for Life of America. The views expressed are his own.
The views and opinions expressed in this commentary are those of the author and do not reflect the official position of The Daily Caller.