Republican presidential candidate Jeb Bush said Friday that it wasn't helpful for the discussion of border security for Pope FrancisPope FrancisFormer pope ill after trip to Germany: report Group says China hackers infiltrated Vatican ahead of expected talks McCarthy calls on Pelosi to condemn 'mob violence' after toppling of St. Junipero Serra statue MORE to question Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpTeachers union launches 0K ad buy calling for education funding in relief bill FDA head pledges 'we will not cut corners' on coronavirus vaccine Let our values drive COVID-19 liability protection MORE’s faith the day before.

“I don’t think he helped anybody by saying Donald Trump’s not a Christian,” he told hosts Joe Scarborough and Mika Brzezinski on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe."


“I don’t think he should be interjecting himself into the political arena,” Bush said. "I thought it was probably inappropriate for the pope to intervene in the height of a contested primary this way. He’s the head of my church, so I’m cautious, to be honest with you. [Pope Francis] is a spiritual leader [and] an inspiration.”

Trump called Francis “disgraceful” late Thursday after the Catholic leader suggest Trump is “not Christian” for promoting a border wall between Mexico and the U.S.

Bush refused comment Friday over whether he supports Francis’s analysis of his rival for the GOP presidential nomination.

“I don’t question Donald Trump’s Christianity,” he said of the Republican front-runner. "That’s between him and his creator."

“The fact is that he’s got the wrong policy,” Bush continued. "Building a wall and making Mexico pay for it is not a policy. That’s an emotion. That’s a sentiment that tries to appeal to people's angst, frustration and anger. The pope’s right about that.”

Francis’s remarks follow his recent visit to Mexico. He concluded his visit there by laying a wreath on its border with America symbolizing refugees who had died attempting safe crossing between the two.

Trump has repeatedly linked illegal immigration with the drug trade and violent crime. He has vowed he make Mexican leadership pay for a barrier separating the U.S. from its southern neighbor, estimating its cost at $8 billion.