Patterico's Pontifications


Lincoln Project Releases Video Aimed At “MAGA Church”

Filed under: General — Dana @ 12:17 pm

[guest post by Dana]

In response to Christianity Today’s call for Trump’s removal from office, the President said, in part, that “no President has done more for the Evangelical community, and it’s not even close.” As I’ve written before, it’s astounding that evangelicals have easily justified their support of Trump, in spite of his obvious lack of a functioning moral compass and foundational principles. In the summation of Franklin Graham, support for Trump is acceptable because the end justifies the means. I have written about the Evangelical community’s disturbing justification of Trump a number of times. In part:

But how to explain the moral compromise by those whose bread and butter isn’t politics but is instead serving in the house of God? One would think that these individuals would be free from any need of approval by President Trump, or any need to be in his good graces. After all, shouldn’t loyalty to God and the principles He lays out for believers supersede all else? With that, the past two years have been a season of having it repeatedly driven home that we all have feet of clay. Yet it’s not just the elected officials of faith who have meekly fallen in line while clutching the levers of power, it’s also those who stand in pulpits across the nation, telling us how to live while speaking out of both sides of their mouth. Like Franklin Graham:

Franklin Graham, who is the son of the late evangelist Billy Graham and a prominent supporter of President Trump, slammed Democratic presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg for being gay, Christian and married. In a series of three tweets Wednesday, he assailed Buttigieg for remarks he has made about being a gay Christian.

“Presidential candidate & South Bend Mayor @PeteButtigieg is right—God doesn’t have a political party,” Graham wrote. “But God does have commandments, laws & standards He gives us to live by. God doesn’t change. His Word is the same yesterday, today & forever.”

Then, Graham added, “Mayor Buttigieg says he’s a gay Christian. As a Christian I believe the Bible which defines homosexuality as sin, something to be repentant of, not something to be flaunted, praised or politicized. The Bible says marriage is between a man & a woman—not two men, not two women.”

Here’s the thing: It’s just a bit rich when an Evangelical pastor uses his bully pulpit to point out one man’s sin, while ignoring another man’s sin because that other individual is the guy he’s put his reputation on the line for and thrown his support behind.

The Evangelical church has consistently ignored Trump’s sins, or worse, rationalized them while at the same time condemning those across the political aisle for their sins. God is an equal-opportunity condemner of sin, no matter how the individual votes. Not so in the Evangelical community.

Anyway, the Lincoln Project, a group whose mission is to “defeat President Trump and Trumpism at the ballot box,” and whose advisers include George Conway, Steve Schmidt, and Rick Wilson, among others, has released its first video targeting the “MAGA Church” and the relationship between Trump and the Evangelical church. According to the Lincoln Project, the video is “highlighting the hypocrisy of those who claim the mantle of Jesus while supporting or ignoring President Donald Trump’s immoral acts”:

Clearly Trump needs the continued support of the Evangelical community. However, with 26% of the electorate being Evangelicals, I don’t see it decreasing anytime soon. While I find the video choppy, inartfully done, and obnoxious enough to want to turn it off quickly, we are already three years into a Trump administration, with a nation severely polarized as a result. Thus, I have to wonder exactly whose mind they think this will change.

(Cross-posted at The Jury Talks Back.)


Fifth Circuit Overturns Injunction Against Using Pentagon Funds for Border Wall

Filed under: General — JVW @ 9:28 am

[guest post by JVW]

National Review Online has the details:

On Wednesday, a federal appellate court lifted an injunction by a lower court which had prevented $3.6 billion in military funds from being used for the construction of a barrier on the U.S.-Mexico border.

The 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, based in New Orleans, ruled 2-1 to lift the injunction put in place in December by El Paso-based District Court Judge David Briones, a Clinton appointee.

The court’s two Republican appointees ruled that the plaintiffs in the suit — the city of El Paso and the Border Network for Human Rights — lacked the standing to challenge the administration’s use of the funds as an encroachment on Congress’s appropriation powers.

“The Supreme Court recently stayed a similar injunction from our sister circuit,” wrote 5th Circuit Judges Edith Jones, a Reagan appointee, and Andrew Oldham, who was appointed by President Trump, in the brief ruling.

The Supreme Court in July lifted an injunction by a different lower court blocking military funds for border-wall construction.

If the name Edith Jones rings a bell, you might recall that she was given serous consideration as a replacement for Justice David Souter before President George W. Bush settled upon Samuel Alito instead. April will mark her 35th year of service on the Fifth Circuit Court, and she turns 71 that same month.

The dissenter in the 2-1 vote was Judge Stephen Higginson, an Obama appointee, who agreed that the merits of the case deserved consideration but did not believe that the government could claim either irreparable harm or a likelihood of prevailing in the matter to justify the reversal.

Failure to build the wall will be one item on which the President will be taunted during his reelection campaign, but I suppose this ruling will give him cover as he will argue that meddlesome courts with Democrat judges did their best to prevent him from keeping his promise and delayed his plans by several years. That will likely be justification enough for his ardent supporters.


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