Jeb Bush Thinks His Faith Shouldn’t Inform His Position On Climate Change. Except Wh en He Does

by Jack Jenkins Posted on June 18, 2015 at 8:19 am

Former Florida Governor and Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush doesn’t want his Catholic faith to inform his politics. Well, except for when he does.

Speaking at a town hall campaign event in New Hampshire on Tuesday, Bush, who converted to Catholicism 20 years ago, all but dismissed the pope’s new encyclical on the environment, which was leaked to the press on Monday and officially released on Thursday. In an apparent rejection of the document’s impressively comprehensive, faith-based call for Catholics to help slow the effects of climate change, Bush said that he thinks religion “ought to be about making us better as people and less about things that end up getting into the political realm.”

“I hope I’m not going to get castigated for saying this by my priest back home,” Bush added, “but I don’t get my economic policy from my bishops or my cardinals or my pope.”

While Bush seems suddenly eager to distance himself from the pontiff, he was singing a very different tune just last month, when he offered the commencement address at Liberty University. After specifically championing Pope Francis as an exemplar of the Christian faith, Bush pushed back on the idea that a politician should unconditionally cleave their faith from their legislative agenda.

“… I am asked sometimes whether I would ever allow my decisions in government to be influenced by my Christian faith,” he said. “Whenever I hear this, I know what they want me to say. The simple and safe reply is, ‘No. Never. Of course not.’ If the game is political correctness, that’s the answer that moves you to the next round. The endpoint is a certain kind of politician we’ve all heard before – the guy whose moral convictions are so private, so deeply personal, that he refuses even to impose them on himself.”

…(read more).

Global Climate Change
Environmental Justice
Environment Ethics

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