Bishop Blasts Biden’s ‘Fake Catholicism’ Following Latest Abortion Comments

The Catholic bishop of Tyler, Texas, denounced President Joe Biden’s “fake Catholicism” and called on the Vatican to weigh in after the president said Pope Francis and some bishops did not oppose taxpayer funding for abortion.

A member of the White House press corps told the president outside the White House that “Catholic bishops are demanding that federal tax dollars not fund abortions” days after Bishop Michael Burbidge, the chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ Committee on Pro-Life Activities and the head of the Diocese of Arlington in Virginia, asked Congress to pass a bill prohibiting taxpayer funding for abortion.

“No, they are not all doing that, nor is the pope,” Biden, who is Catholic, replied. The nation’s second Catholic president has made support for abortion a central part of his presidency and has called for the removal of the Hyde Amendment, a provision in the annual federal budget that bars taxpayer funding for abortion.

Bishop Joseph Strickland of the Catholic Diocese of Tyler quickly condemned the president’s comments and said the Vatican should respond.

“Mr. Biden can’t be allowed to twist the words of Pope Francis in this way,” Strickland tweeted. “I implore the Vatican press office to emphatically clarify that Pope Francis rightly calls abortion murder. It is time to denounce Biden’s fake Catholicism.”

While Strickland was quick to denounce Biden’s comments, other prelates of the church have yet to weigh in. The Washington Examiner contacted the Archdiocese of Washington, which is led by Cardinal Wilton Gregory, for comment but has not received a response.

Last year, Gregory denounced a group of pro-abortion rights Catholics who projected graphics onto the Basilica of the National Shrine of the Immaculate Conception in the district. In a strongly worded statement, Gregory likened the group to the disciple Judas.

Pope Francis, while seen by many as a liberalizing force since he was elected as the head of the Catholic Church in 2013, has forcefully condemned abortion on numerous occasions. In 2019, the pope compared abortion to “hiring a hitman” and condemned abortions that were made based on prenatal testing results.

The USCCB did not respond to a request for comment.

Reporting from The Washington Examiner.