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Jeb Bush Reinforces the Separation of Politics and Religion

During a Wednesday speech in Iowa, Jeb Bush cautioned against those who would blend religion and politics. This was a signal that he did not plan to heed the pope or even pander to the social conservatives on policies during his Republican nomination campaign.

Bush said, “I don’t think we should politicize our faith.” This speech was given in an area where the evangelical Christians hold quite a bit of political influence. He continued on to say, “I think religion ought to be about making us better as people and less about things that end up getting into the political realm.”

Bush's comments come after the expectation that Pope Francis will endorse the view that climate change is the result of human activity, which is a stance challenged by a number of the Republicans running for president.

Bush, who is also a converted Catholic, made the suggestion that he is not going to be beholden to a policy agenda based on faith. He stated, “I go to church to have my faith nourished, to have my faith challenged.”

He also shared that he would be reflecting on the coming encyclical, with the statement that, “I think Pope Francis is an extraordinary leader of a church whose teachings I try to follow, and it doesn’t need to get any more complicated than that.”

Photo: JS Online

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