Thursday on his radio show, conservative talker Rush Limbaugh reacted to Pope Francis’ suggestion that GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump wasn’t a Christian.
Limbaugh questioned the reasoning for the Pope’s statements and why he was inserting himself into the American political system.
Partial transcript as follows:
I just got an e-mail. Somebody said, “Hey, Rush, is this now a problem for Trump with the pope claiming he’s not a Christian?” Ladies and gentlemen, no. If you’re still looking for that straw that’s gonna break the camel’s back, this is not it. That’s not even the question. The real question here is who is the pope working for? What is the pope doing inserting himself — he’s the Vicar of Christ. He is the worldwide leader of the Catholic faith. What is he doing inserting himself into the American political system this way? That to me is the larger question.
People might be able to make a case for it. I’m not saying there’s no answer to it. I’m saying the question is not, “Is this gonna hurt Trump?” It isn’t gonna hurt Trump. Trump for his part’s out there saying it’s outrageous for a religious leader to say that he’s not a Christian. Trump’s out there saying (paraphrasing), “I’m the one guy that’s out there saying the attacks on Christianity are gonna stop when I get elected.” Now, he’s not the only guy saying that, of course, but that’s what he’s saying in response to this. He had a rapid fire response to it.
But, no, no, no, this isn’t gonna hurt Trump. I mean, the question, once this settles, is gonna be aimed at the pope. And the question is gonna be, what is the pope doing? For whom is the pope doing it, if the pope is doing it for anybody? But that’s gonna be what it boils down to: What is the pope doing here? Why? And I’ll tell you this. The more establishment figures — and the pope qualifies as an institutional leader, and therefore the pope would qualify in many people’s eyes as an establishment figure, particularly this pope, who has not hidden his ideological alignment, much less his political alignment.
People that support Trump are gonna circle the wagons around Trump even more so after this. This isn’t gonna cause Catholics or other Christians to say, “Oh, my God, the pope, oh, no, pope says Trump’s not a Christian. I gotta abandon Trump.” No. It isn’t gonna happen that way, I don’t believe. And then all you need to do is show people the picture of the wall surrounding the Vatican. I’ve seen it. That wall’s gotta be 40 feet high, folks. I mean, you’re not climbing over that wall no matter what you do.
Follow Jeff Poor on Twitter @jeff_poor