Pope’s speech defies political categories

Posted at 5:41 PM, Sep 24, 2015
and last updated 2015-09-24 19:48:27-04

Pope Francis crafted a speech meant to get through to American leaders, with it's allusions to the national anthem and it's structure using Abraham Lincoln and Martin Luther King as two of four American exemplars with less well known Catholic Icons Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton.

That gentle approach was the vehicle for tough love: a call to abolish the death penalty and to, protect life from it's beginnings, an intentionally non-confrontational reference to abortion.

Democratic and Republican Congressmen and Senators held onto different portions of the speech as points of agreement.

Republican Orrin Hatch said, "He covered the whole gambit from left to right, but he also made it clear that we should honor life from the earliest possibility of life right on through."

While Independent Bernie Sanders said, "I think he came here today and touched on some very very important issues that a lot of people would prefer not to talk about and that is the issue of poverty, the issue of environmental degradation, immigration, the death penalty, the need to do everything we can to create a peaceful world and I think he did it in a very dignified non-partisan type way."