Pope's attack could damage Trump bid
Published 19/02/2016 | 02:30
Pope Francis's condemnation of Donald Trump as "not a Christian" is a serious indictment for the front-runner for the Republican US presidential nomination. The Pope used his Mexican visit to unleash what at first glance looks like an astonishing attack on the billionaire. Evidently stung, Mr Trump responded by saying that the comment was "disgraceful". However, there was nothing unremarkable about a Pontiff, who has made it his mission to stand up for the poor and the marginalised, chastising the Republican.
Was it not Mr Trump who suggested that only he could protect the Vatican from attack by Isil; even saying that the Pope should "pray" that he becomes president?
Surely even Mr Trump would allow that there is something less than charitable about a plan to deport 11 million illegal immigrants and build a wall on the US-Mexico border?
No doubt some will question the wisdom of the Pope's criticism of a candidate with so much at stake. Jerry Falwell Jr, a prominent evangelical Christian leader and supporter of Mr Trump, certainly did. "I think this will hurt the Pope more than it will hurt Donald Trump," he claimed.
In this particular battle between God and Mammon, few will doubt where the smart money will be.