Ryan to be met by Catholic protesters, ‘GOP Jesus’ at Georgetown lecture

Rep. Paul Ryan (R-Wis.), author of the House majority's budget proposal, will be met by Catholic protesters outside of a scheduled lecture at Georgetown University on Thursday.

Catholics United, a social justice group aligned with more liberal politics, is organizing the gathering in response to cuts Ryan's budget would make to social welfare programs.

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The group says it will have an actor portraying “GOP Jesus” outside where Ryan will be delivering a policy speech as a part of the Catholic school’s Whittington Lecture series.

They will carry a 50-foot banner that says: “Were you there when they crucified the poor?”

It’s the latest push back from Catholic groups upset with Ryan for using Catholic teaching to justify his budget proposal. Critics say that the budget goes against Catholic teaching because of cuts to food stamps and other assistance programs for the poor.

On Tuesday, more than 80 Georgetown University faculty members and administrators signed a letter challenging Ryan’s use of Catholic teaching in defending his budget proposal, but said they weren’t challenging his right to speak on campus.

The letter cites correspondence, first obtained by The Hill, sent by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to the House and Senate that also criticized the House-passed budget for failing to meet certain “moral criteria” by disproportionately cutting programs that “serve poor and vulnerable people.”