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Cardinal Dolan hits Sessions’s use of the Bible to defend family separation: There’s ‘no Bible passage’ that would justify it

Greg Nash

Cardinal Timothy Dolan on Friday fired back at Attorney General Jeff Sessions for using the Bible to defend the Trump administration’s policy of separating families at the border, which he called “unbiblical.”

The archbishop of New York issued a harsh rebuke of the policy, telling CNN’s Chris Cuomo that it is “un-American.”

“I don’t think we should obey a law that goes against what God intends that you would take a baby, a child, from their mom,” he said. “I mean, that’s just unjust. That’s unbiblical. That’s un-American. There could be no Bible passage that would justify that.”

“God’s law trumps man’s law,” Dolan added, citing a Bible verse to support his counterargument.


Speaking earlier this week in Indiana, Sessions invoked the Bible to defend the administration’s policy.

“I would cite you to the Apostle Paul and his clear and wise command in Romans 13, to obey the laws of the government because God has ordained them for the purpose of order,” he said. “Orderly and lawful processes are good in themselves and protect the weak and lawful.”

Dolan said that the passage Sessions quoted “might not be the best” to prove his point.

“St. Paul himself, who gave the quote that the attorney general used, he wouldn’t obey Roman law when it said it was mandatory to worship the emperor,” Dolan said. “He wouldn’t obey that law.”

Dolan added that while it’s “fine” for authorities to conduct interviews and screening of immigrants, the actions that the Trump administration is taking are “wrong.”

“If they want to take a baby from the arms of his mother and separate the two, that’s wrong,” he said. “I don’t care where you’re at, what time and what condition … you don’t have to read the bible for that. That goes against human decency. That goes against human dignity.”

The “zero tolerance” policy to prosecute more parents illegally crossing the border and separate them from their children, which Sessions announced earlier this year, has sparked major public outcry from both sides of the aisle.

Sessions has defended the administration’s policy as a necessary border security measure, while President Trump has repeatedly blamed Democrats for lack of action on immigration and claimed that family separation is the “law.”

The scrutiny has intensified in recent weeks as reporters have revealed more details about the conditions in which migrant children at the border are housed. One MSNBC reporter who visited a Texas facility said the children are being “effectively incarcerated.”

Tags Donald Trump Jeff Sessions

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