The Contradiction of the Republican Party At The Presidential Family Forum
At the Presidential Family Forum on Nov. 20, Iowa’s weather took a turn today with its first snowstorm of the season. Bob Vander Plaats kicked off the forum by blaming Satan (?) for the weather. We’ve always debated the separation of church and state, but I guess we never considered the separation of church and weather.
Regardless, Christians didn’t let Satan or the weather stop them from attending this pre-caucus event. In the spirit of Thanksgiving, Republican candidates joined for a night of solidarity as a party. Sitting around a table, the goal was to steer away from the traditional debate format and instead focus on the “main issue” facing our society’s today: the need for more God in modern politics.
Today, our states are faced with the very controversial decision as to whether welcome Syrian refugees within our borders or deny them. Now, I am not one to question anyone’s faith in God, but I will point out the contradiction between faith and the conservative stance Republican candidates are taking in not letting in refugees.
The Bible states in John 3:17, “But if anyone has the world’s goods and sees his brother in need, yet closes his heart against him, how does God’s love abide in him?” If these candidates swear by their faith, then are we ignoring what God tells us only for this particular cause?
Event moderator, Dr. Frank Luntz, asks candidate Sen. Ted Cruz, “Common sense tells us to keep these refugees out, but our faith tells us to help those in genuine need— ” he was cut off abruptly by Cruz who said, “but, but, Frank we are helping them.”
With that I ask the primary question that lies ahead for Christian conservatives: What matters more: faith or common sense?
Recently Gov. Terry Branstad broke an Iowa “tradition” of letting refugees within its borders. The Republican Party in Iowa and at the Republican Party at the federal level are temporarily setting love and Christianity aside in order to keep Syrian refugees from resettlement in the United States.
Whether faith or common sense matters more to Christian conservatives is apparent in the presidential candidate’s xenophobic approach to ignoring their fellow man in need. The Republican candidates outlook on the Syrian refugee crisis is mirrored in the policy decisions of conservatives at the congressional level.
For concerned Americans and Iowans, fear has overridden not only common sense but also compassion to help others.
Christopoulos is majoring in politics and broadcast journalism. She was born and raised in San Francisco but had to move to Iowa for sweet corn and caucuses. Follow her on Twitter.