“I am a Catholic, and Hillary is a Methodist, but, I tell you, her creed is the same as mine: ‘Do all the good that you can,'” Tim Kaine said when Hillary Clinton announced back in July that he would be her running mate on the Democratic ticket.
And ever since that first transparently political answer on faith, Kaine has been attempting to walk a tightrope between his politics and his religious beliefs.
“While Sen. Kaine has been open about his personal reservations about abortion, he’s maintained a 100-percent pro-choice voting record in the U.S. Senate.”
Kaine has been open about his Catholic faith — but since his selection as Hillary’s running mate, his religious beliefs have taken a back seat to the Clinton campaign — and Kaine’s political stances have become even more directly opposed to the religion he professes.
Ahead of the vice presidential debate Tuesday night, Tim Kaine and Mike Pence have taken center stage in the media. Both of them are self-proclaimed Christians, although they have polar-opposite political platforms.
Since joining the Clinton ticket, Kaine has unapologetically defended abortion and Hillary Clinton’s platform on the issue — the most radical position on the issue in the general election. Although he says he is “personally opposed” to abortion, he has kept that personal opinion out of his politics. In the Senate, Kaine fought against those who sought to defund Planned Parenthood; he voted against a 20-week abortion ban; and he went so far as to co-sponsor legislation to take down state laws that limited abortion.
Emily’s List President Stephanie Schriock publicly applauded Kaine last month for his strong commitment to the pro-choice agenda. She said he has become “an incredible champion for Planned Parenthood and for women,” adding, “He is someone who has really stood up and fought for women and access to the full range of health care that we need.”
The National Association for the Repeal of Abortion Laws (NARAL) — an aggressively pro-choice organization — also praised Tim Kaine’s voting record.
“While Sen. Kaine has been open about his personal reservations about abortion, he’s maintained a 100-percent pro-choice voting record in the U.S. Senate,” the group said in a statement. “When he was governor, Tim Kaine took positions we disagreed with and actively campaigned against. We’re pleased that since then, his votes and public statements have been consistently in favor of trusting women to make our own decisions.”
But it’s not just on the abortion issue that Tim Kaine splits off from the official teachings of the Catholic Church. In September, he went as far to say that the church will be changing its stance on same-sex marriage.
“I think it’s going to change because my church also teaches me about a creator who, in the first chapter of Genesis, surveyed the entire world, including mankind, and said, ‘It is very good,'” Kaine said on Sept. 10, as the Associated Press and other outlets reported.
Kaine even referred to Pope Francis and editorialized the famous “Who am I to judge?” comment, espousing to know what the pope was thinking, when he said, “I want to add: Who am I to challenge God for the beautiful diversity of the human family? I think we’re supposed to celebrate it — not challenge it.”
The false theological interpretation is especially ironic given that over the weekend, Pope Francis himself said, “Today, there is a global war out to destroy marriage.”
Also in August, Kaine attempted to court the Catholic vote, referring to a nonexistent political shift in the church with what he dubbed “Pope Francis Catholics.”
“Well, Jesuits aren’t that big an applause line in every city, but I’m glad to know in Philadelphia,” Kaine said. “I bet there were a lot of Pope Francis Catholics here before there was a Pope Francis.”
Pope Francis has not wavered on Catholic teaching when it comes to same-sex marriage, gender theory, or abortion. But according to Tim Kaine, candidate for the vice presidency, American “Pope Francis Catholics” are those who promote contrary theological beliefs for political reasons — a definition the pope might not appreciate.
Tim Kaine’s Catholic beliefs clearly have no role in his political decisions. On abortion, marriage, and many other issues, Kaine has desperately (and unsuccessfully) attempted to walk the line between two contradictory platforms — a 2,000-year-old religion and the Hillary Clinton campaign for the White House.