Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi Thursday rebutted charges that she hates President Trump, telling reporters that such an emotion conflicts with her Catholic faith.
“I pray for the president,” Pelosi said.
Pelosi, a Democrat, had just finished a news conference about impeachment and was walking away from the podium when a reporter asked her: “Do you hate the president, Madame Speaker?” Pelosi immediately stopped and pointed to the reporter, telling him, “I don’t hate anyone – not anyone in the world.”
“Don’t accuse me,” Pelosi began, visibly upset.
The reporter said he was quoting a GOP representative who had said Democrats were impeaching Trump “simply because they don’t like the guy”
Pelosi then walked back to the podium and continued speaking.
“As a Catholic, I resent your using the word ‘hate’ in a sentence that addresses me,” she said. “I don't hate anyone. I was raised in a way that is [a] heart full of love and always pray for the president. And I still pray for the president. I pray for the President all the time. So don't mess with me when it comes to words like that.”
Impeachment, she said, “is about the Constitution of the United States and the facts that lead to the president's violation of his oath of office.”
Q: "Do you hate the president?"@SpeakerPelosi: "I don't hate anybody…As a Catholic, I resent your using the word hate in a sentence that addresses me. I don't hate anyone…So, don't mess with me when it comes to words like that."— CSPAN (@cspan) December 5, 2019
Full video: https://t.co/l9peY9RTzl pic.twitter.com/zpqUaCcVrS
Trump was asked Thursday if he feared impeachment would stain his legacy.
“No. Not at all,” he said. “It's a hoax. It's a hoax. It's a big fat hoax.”
Q: "Are you worried about the stain impeachment might have on your legacy?"— CSPAN (@cspan) December 5, 2019
President Trump: "No. Not at all. It's a hoax. It's a hoax. It's a big fat hoax." pic.twitter.com/rpmnKVOOm8
Pelosi’s remarks drew a wide range of responses on social media.
“I do not often find much to praise Nancy Pelosi about, but this is a fine example of public leadership,” tweeted Andrew T. Walker, a professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. “And while I differ greatly on how she appropriates her faith in other areas, this is admirable. A good example of faith informing personal and public values.”
Some said Pelosi wasn’t applying her faith consistently.
“Just a reminder for the staunch Catholic @SpeakerPelosi that the Catholic Church teaches abortion is ‘a crime against human life,’” tweeted writer Mary Margaret Olohan.
Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.
Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Alex Wong/Staff
Michael Foust has covered the intersection of faith and news for 20 years. His stories have appeared in Baptist Press, Christianity Today, The Christian Post, the Leaf-Chronicle, the Toronto Star and the Knoxville News-Sentinel.