It's not appropriate for Pope Francis to criticize Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpAccuser says Trump should be afraid of the truth Woman behind pro-Trump Facebook page denies being influenced by Russians Shulkin says he has White House approval to root out 'subversion' at VA MORE’s proposed wall on the U.S.-Mexico border, Ben CarsonBenjamin (Ben) Solomon CarsonHUD watchdog looking into involvement of Carson's family at agency Ethics watchdog calls for probe of Carson family role at federal agency Thanks to Trump and Pence, America's relationship with Israel is stronger than ever MORE said Friday.

“It’s sad we get involved in these kinds of distractions,” he told hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”

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“The pope is obviously a good person and tries to look out for everybody,” the Republican presidential contender continued. "But it’s not appropriate for the pontiff to get involved in issues like that. Of course every nation has a right to sovereignty. The Vatican has a right to sovereignty.”

Trump, who is leading polls ahead of Saturday's GOP primary in South Carolina, derided Francis as “disgraceful” Thursday for suggesting the billionaire’s call for a barrier on America’s southern border is “not Christian” earlier that morning. Carson, a Seventh Day Adventist, noted that his religion provides the moral basis for both his political policies and private conduct.

“I would much rather lose that lie,” he said as an example of his principles. "I take my examples from the life of Christ. I make no bones about the fact that I’m a Christian and that I have Christian values.”

Carson, who ranks second-to-last in Republican voter supporter nationwide, added he is not giving up on his quest for the White House just yet.

“There’s a lot of people saying, ‘Hang around, we’ve got your back,’” the retired neurosurgeon said the day before South Carolina’s GOP presidential primary.

“The nice thing for me is that my support comes from ‘We the People.' It’s not about ‘They the Pundits’ or the political class. It’s nine-inning game. You don’t get out after the second or third inning."