While Mayor Pete Buttigieg of South Bend, Indiana appeared, along with the rest of the Democratic candidates, appeared on CNN’s seven-hour long climate change marathon, he waited until the next day to become a serious climate change scold. Buttigieg appeared on CNN and attacked Americans for clinging, to paraphrase former President Barack Obama, to the burgers and their plastic straws. Fox News takes up the story:
Buttigieg, the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend, Ind., told host Alisyn Camerota he thinks many people view climate issues from ‘the perspective of guilt.’
“You know, from using a straw to eating a burger. Am I part of the problem? In a certain way, yes,” he said. “But the most exciting thing is that we can all be part of the solution.”
Buttigieg went on to compare the challenges of climate change to the Great Depression, World War II, and the Apollo moon landing. The idea he was trying to impart was that we overcame those challenges, we can certainly do the same to keep the world from burning up thanks to fossil fuels.
The young, openly gay mayor, though, has taken a different path to try to persuade Americans to vote for him so that he can solve the problem of climate change. Most of the other candidates invoke science to advance the idea that co2 emissions are going to kill us all unless we inflict some version of the Green New Deal on ourselves. Buttigieg invokes God instead.
“Let’s talk in language that is understood across the heartland about faith,” Buttigieg said.
“If you believe that God is watching as poison is being belched into the air of creation, and people are being harmed by it — countries are at risk of vanishing in low-lying areas — what do you suppose God thinks of that? I bet He thinks it’s messed up.”
He went on to suggest that people who do not sign on to the Green New Deal or the rest of the liberal agenda are committing a “kind of sin.”
Usually, conservatives take a bad rap for allegedly drafting the Almighty to support political positions. Over 20 years ago, the liberal American Prospect warned about the idea that God is a Republican.
“The idea that right-thinking Christians should take back America has been a rallying cry for Ralph Reed’s Christian Coalition, now the strongest special-interest group in the Republican Party. Without a doubt, the coalition has helped transform many Protestant evangelicals into GOP zealots. But the connection carries considerable risk. Reed has tied his religious troops to the fortunes of Republican candidates in November. If they win, the Christian Coalition will remain in the news—at least until the next election. If they lose, and especially if they lose because of perceived close links to what many voters view as strident moral crusading that quotes the Bible on behalf of slashing welfare and defeating bans on assault weapons, Reed will pass into history.”
Now, ironically, Pete Buttigieg is suggesting that God is a liberal Democrat, something that would surprise most people of faith, especially those who find themselves supporting President Donald Trump. The warm support that Trump enjoys from the evangelical community has perplexed many on the left, considering his reputation as a robust sinner.
Religion News Service quotes Ralph Reed, who despite the confident prediction of the American Prospect has not faded from history, as saying, “There has never been anyone who has defended us and who has fought for us, who we have loved more than Donald J. Trump. No one!”
A quick look back at some of the policies of the Obama administration suggests that Reed has a point. From attempts of force the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide abortions to lawsuits against Christian bakers and florists who refuse to participate in same-sex weddings, the Obama era was one of hostility toward religion and religious people. Trump has promised to defend religious liberty and has, by and large, fulfilled that promise. His frequent invocations to God on the stump are surely music to the ears of the religious as well.
It remains to be seen whether Buttigieg’s attempt to guilt-trip people of faith to support the Green New Deal will work or not. The candidate, who made a big splash as a young, telegenic, openly gay man who was less scary than Beto O’Rourke, has since settled to about 4.4 in the Real Clear Politics poll average.