Representative Phil Gingrey (R-Georgia), walked out of President Barack Obama‘s address at the annual National Prayer Breakfast after becoming offended that the president insinuated politics into what is supposed to be a non-partisan event, reports the Atlanta Journal Constitution.
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“He was glad that the president attended, but he felt that there were 364 days in a year to give a speech on your policies or campaign rhetoric,” said Gingrey spokeswoman Jen Talaber.
In a puzzling move, President Obama decided do a little blurring of church and state by enumerating the many ways that Christianity influences his economic policy:
If I’m willing to give something up as somebody who’s been extraordinarily blessed, and give up some of the tax breaks that I enjoy, I actually think that’s going to make economic sense. But for me as a Christian, it also coincides with Jesus’ teaching that ‘for unto whom much is given, much shall be required.’ It mirrors the Islamic belief that those who’ve been blessed have an obligation to use those blessings to help others, or the Jewish doctrine of moderation and consideration for others.”
Then, in a subtle jab at the current GOP front-runner, Mitt Romney, who — in addition to being Mormon — recently “mis-spoke” when saying that the “poor aren’t [his] concern,” Obama seemed to pull Romney’s religion card by suggesting that his own Christian values ensured that he cares about those in poverty:
“[It’s] a biblical call to care for the poor and to follow the responsibility we’re given in Proverbs to ‘Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves, for the rights of all who are destitute,’” said the president.
Oh, it get’s better. Obama, who has made it a point to surround himself with Wall Street heavyweights during his first term, such as Lawrence Summers, Michael Froman, Neal Wolin, William Daley and Tom Donilon — or as National Review writer, Kevin D. Williamson so brilliantly put it, B.H. Obama & Co. LLC: A Wall Street Cabinet Company — then said that his Wall Street policy followed the commandment of God:
“The Wall Street reform [I] championed makes the economy stronger for everyone and abides by God’s command to ‘love thy neighbor as thyself,” said Obama.
These remarks did not sit well with Gingrey. Going into further detail on what is sure to be viewed as another disrespectful action against the president — akin to Arizona Governor Jan Brewer losing her mind at pointing her finger in the president’s face like he was an errant school child –Talaber said that Gingrey was most upset at the president’s lack of reverence for the occasion:
“He was disappointed, because he wanted to know what was in the president’s heart, and not just rhetoric,” the spokeswoman said. “So he said that he decided to quietly get up and leave because he felt that it wasn’t the time or the place, and that the president didn’t seem to be aware of the meaning of the breakfast or why so many people came to hear him speak. He was offended by the very tone of the speech.”
I was too, Rep. Gingrey; though, I’m sure, that my reasons have very little in common with yours.
My issue is that President Barack Obama has transparent pandering down to an exact science. Just in time for Black History Month, he managed to insult the intelligence of millions of Black Americans by concocting an end-zone campaign to ensure that the same voters he’s ignored for almost four years make it their mission to “Barack the Vote” in November. It’s amazing that he can’t specifically address the issues that plague our communities — because he’s the president for all Americans — yet, he has no problem specifically asking for our vote.
However it’s not just us; no “special interest group” is exempt.
He claims to be pro-choice, but then goes out of his way to symbolically sign an executive order in March of 2010 to show his unwavering support for the long-standing Hyde Amendment, which effectively bans the federal government from financing elective abortions.
He consistently shrugs his shoulder with that boyish grin when asked about his support of the legalization of same-sex marriages; veering hard to the right, the president repeatedly says that “he’s working on it.” In the mean time, as he continues to deny the LGBTQ community equal rights under the law, he was proud to eradicate Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell, effectively “allowing them” to fight and die for a country that finds suppression of their civil liberties “fair.”
President Obama is passionate about green energy. If we don’t hear anything else, rest assured that we will hear about green energy. Ironically, when the president had the opportunity to stand firmly behind the Environment Protection Agency and a regulation that would ensure a dramatic decrease in smog production, he caved to business and Republican protest and rejected the potentially life-saving measure. The American Lung Association was so disgusted that they threatened to pursue legal action against the current standards, which were proposed by George W. Bush.
Noticing a theme here? Obviously, President Obama has perfected the art of the Beltway Two-Step as if he’s been dancing it his entire life. Still, in no arena is he as obviously awkward as when pouring on the hallelujahs. His blatant merger of church and state is the antithesis of words spoken earlier in his career when he spoke eloquently against the very idea.
In one of the most intelligent explorations into the hypocrisy and infeasibility contained within portions of the Bible, a little known speech given by a young Senator Obama at turns ridicules the Good Book (see: Leviticus, stoning and shellfish) and refers to religion as a hindrance to Democracy. He makes it clear that America is not a Christian nation, and that if it ever was, “it’s not anymore.” He quips that if Abraham (see: Genesis) had attempted to slash his son Isaac’s throat in modern society, at the very least, “police would be called and child and family services would be expected to take Isaac away from Abraham.” He convincingly makes the point that faith has no place in politics, because we do not share common spiritual eyesight, we can only share common laws. Most powerfully, he says that “religiously motivated [politicians] must translate their concerns into universal — not religious — values.
Where was that Obama at the Prayer Breakfast?
The president’s injection of personal faith into politics — when he so clearly stands against it — was about as bizarre as Sarah Palin being anointed by a witch-hunter who asked Jesus to fund her campaign and as laughable as four GOP candidates, Rick Santorum, Michele Bachmann, Rick Perry and Herman Cain, claiming that God led them all to run for president — he was clearly wrong about three of them because only Perry remains.
In Matthew 5:17, Jesus says “Do not think that I came to destroy the Law or the Prophets. I didn’t come to destroy them, but to fulfill them.” Unfortunately, when it comes to conservative politics, Wall Street cronyism and now his politically advantageous blurring of church and state, that is one verse in the Bible that Obama obviously takes to heart.
He doesn’t seem to understand that not everyone is going to like him, but we should be able to respect him. I’m not referring to that generic “respect the office of the president,” I’m speaking of literally respecting him. He can’t continue to say that the sky is blue at 8:00 a.m around blue lovers, then tell yellow lovers that it’s actually a lovely shade of saffron at noon. He needs to find a position that he’s comfortable with and play it, regardless of who tries to tackle him; if he doesn’t, he will continue to be viewed as ineffective and untrustworthy by many people who worked tirelessly to get him elected in 2008.