Pete Buttigieg: 'God doesn't have a political party'

Pete Buttigieg: 'God doesn't have a political party'
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Democratic presidential hopeful Pete ButtigiegPeter (Pete) Paul ButtigiegDes Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Candidates weighing using private jets to get to Iowa Biden nabs endorsement from Iowa Democrat in swing district MORE (D) on Monday responded to a question during a town hall event about uniting Christians in America by saying, "God doesn't have a political party."

During a CNN town hall event, Buttigieg, the mayor of South Bend, Ind., was questioned by an audience member on how he planned to unite liberal and conservative people of faith behind his campaign.

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"I get that one of the things about scripture is different people see different things in it," Buttigieg responded. "But, at the very least we should be able to establish that God does not have a political party."

He continued by saying his view of religious scripture is different than that of members of the Trump administration, which he accused of believing that poor people have it "too easy" in American society.

"Frankly, it couldn't be more radically different than what I see certainly in this White House, where there is a lot of chest-thumping and self-aggrandizing, not to mention abusive behavior, but also a political agenda that seems to always be revolving around the idea that somehow it's too easy for poor people in this country," Buttigieg said.

"It's just so different than what I get when I read scripture," he added.

Buttigieg's faith has become a national issue in recent days as the 2020 candidate has publicly feuded with Vice President Pence over differing views on homosexuality and Pence's past support for so-called conversion therapy programs.

“The vice president is entitled to his religious beliefs," Buttigieg, who is openly gay, said last week during a CNN interview. "My problem is when those religious beliefs are used as an excuse to harm other people."

"That was a huge issue for us in Indiana when he advanced a discriminatory bill in 2015 under the guise of religious freedom, that said it was lawful to discriminate, provided you invoked religion as your excuse," Buttigieg continued, referring to Indiana's Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which Pence signed into law.

Buttigieg's comments Monday came as he was the last of five 2020 Democratic hopefuls to take the stage in a series of town hall events on CNN.

Buttigieg spoke after Sens. Amy KlobucharAmy Jean KlobucharDes Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for week two of impeachment trial Moore defends Sanders's reputation: 'We don't want the fake, and the phony and the fraudulent' MORE (D-Minn.), Elizabeth WarrenElizabeth Ann WarrenDes Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Sanders faces lingering questions about appeal to women voters Sunday shows preview: Lawmakers prepare for week two of impeachment trial MORE (D-Mass.), Bernie SandersBernie SandersKaine: Obama called Trump a 'fascist' during 2016 campaign Des Moines Register endorses Elizabeth Warren as Democratic presidential nominee Sanders faces lingering questions about appeal to women voters MORE (I-Vt.) and Kamala HarrisKamala Devi HarrisHarris on 2020 endorsement: 'I am not thinking about it right now' Panel: Is Kamala Harris a hypocrite for mulling a Joe Biden endorsement? The Hill's Morning Report — Dems detail case to remove Trump for abuse of power MORE (D-Calif.) had all had a chance to answer audience questions.