Analysis by WorldTribune Staff, December 8, 2019
A New York Times columnist had a different take on the Dec. 5 public meltdowns of House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and 2020 presidential hopeful Joe Biden.
Pelosi, who claims to be Catholic though she is a strong supporter of abortion on demand, became furious when a reporter asked if she “hated” Trump. After lashing out at the journalist, Pelosi said she still “prays” for Trump.
Biden, who seemed to reinforce criticism that he is a an out-of-touch old guy by naming his campaign the “No Malarkey!” tour, berated a voter, called him “fat” and challenged him to a push-up contest at an Iowa town hall after the voter questioned Biden’s son Hunter’s business dealings in Ukraine.
According to the NY Times’ David Brooks, however, Pelosi’s rant was a “beautiful moment”, while Biden’s fat-shaming of an 83-year-old showed “vigor” and “toughness.”
During the Dec. 6 edition of PBS NewsHour, Brooks lauded Pelosi, saying: “I thought Nancy Pelosi had one of the best political moments of the year this week in saying that she doesn’t hate Donald Trump. She’s going to pray for Donald Trump. That was a — I just thought a beautiful moment of, well, she said it’s her Catholic faith, of Christian witness.”
Commentator and author Mark Steyn, appearing on “Tucker Carlson Tonight”, compared Pelosi to the late televangelist Tammy Faye Bakker.
“And this, they say this actual faux prayerfulness, this fake religiosity is one of the reasons that, you know, this whole thing is a scam,” Steyn said. “She’s coming on like Tammy Faye Bakker leading impeachment.”
Steyn added: “I know that observing the ritual niceties of American politics requires making a boatload of industrial-strength hokum. But you and I and 300 million people across the country know that Nancy Pelosi isn’t praying for the president.”
Responding to Pelosi’s invoking of her alleged Catholic faith, Catholic League president Bill Donohue said that “what bothers many practicing Catholics is her selective invocation of her Catholic status.”
Donohue provided some examples:
• Pelosi is a champion of abortion rights, for any reason, and at any time of pregnancy, including instances when a baby can be killed who is 80 percent born. [Note: The U.S. bishops recently named “the threat of abortion” as the “preeminent priority” for Catholics.]
• Pelosi rejects the Church’s teachings on marriage, holding that two men can marry and raise a family (adopted children, of course) in a manner that is no different from the normal arrangement of a man and a woman.
• Pelosi works tirelessly to support bills like the Equality Act that would devastate religious liberty while also undermining the Catholic Church.
• Pelosi will never support school vouchers for indigent minorities, consigning them to public schools that wealthy white people like her wouldn’t set foot in.
Donohue went on to say that Pelosi “is such a rank hypocrite that she not only selectively, and defensively, wears her religion on her sleeve, she has the gall to call herself a ‘conservative Catholic.’ ”
She might be advised either to stop rejecting Church teachings on core moral issues, or stop playing the Catholic card to justify her opposition to them.
As for Biden, Brooks stated: “I do think Joe Biden had a — one of the best weeks of the campaign. He had an ad mocking…President Trump…and then he went after that voter. Which I think showed vigor, showed toughness, showed he’s doing well, and I think also allowed him to control the news cycle, which he hasn’t done for a long time.”
Critics pointed to Biden’s hypocrisy for calling the 83-year-old man who challenged him “fat” after once having slammed Trump for implying North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un is overweight.
Trump tweeted in November 2017: “Why would Kim Jong-Un insult me by calling me ‘old,’ when I would NEVER call him ‘short and fat?’ Oh well, I try so hard to be his friend — and maybe someday that will happen.”
Biden responded by saying: “Every president I’ve known, and I’ve known eight, they understand there’s an obligation and a sense of dignity about the office. You know, I’ve used the phrase a number of times. We are admired not just for the exercise of our power, but the power of our example. And it matters the way we conduct our discourse. It matters the way in which we talk.”
Critics wondered where the “dignity” and “power of example” was in Biden’s calling the 83-year-old who asked him an honest question a “damn liar” and then alluding to the man’s weight.
After watching a video of Biden’s meltdown, commentator Ben Shapiro tweeted: “Tell me if I’m mishearing but Biden at 1:57 calls this man fat ‘Look fat…’ because he dared to challenge him on Hunter. He also challenges him to a push up contest and warns him about being ‘sedentary.’ So wrong. This man deserves an answer and apology.”
The Hill’s Krystal Ball tweeted: “Joe Biden called Elizabeth Warren an elitist, but here he is insulting a man’s weight (‘sedentary’ and ‘look, fat’) and challenging him to an IQ test. Who’s the real elitist here?”