At the National Prayer Breakfast in Washington, D.C. on Thursday, President Barack Obama said that “killing the innocent” is the “ultimate betrayal of God’s will.”
But the president was talking about terrorism, not abortion:
“Extremists succumb to an ignorant nihilism that shows they don’t understand the faiths they claim to profess, for killing the innocent is never fulfilling God’s will. In fact, it is the ultimate betrayal of God’s will,” Obama said.
Yet Obama is a long-time supporter of abortion rights.
Last April, he became the first sitting president to address Planned Parenthood, thanking conference attendees “for the remarkable work that you’re doing day in, day out in providing quality health care to women all across America.” That health care includes abortion. In fact, Planned Parenthood is the nation’s largest abortion provider.
In 2008, while running for president, then-Sen. Barack Obama mentioned his own daughters in connection with AIDS, contraception and abortion:
“I’ve got two daughters, 9 years old and 6 years old. I am going to teach them first of all about values and morals. But if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished with a baby. I don’t want them punished with an STD at the age of 16.”
At an Oregon fundraiser in July 2012, President Obama once again invoked his daughters as he denounced Republican Mitt Romney for wanting to defund Planned Parenthood:
“I think that’s a bad idea,” Obama said. “I’ve got two daughters. I want them to control their own health care choices.” (Planned Parenthood talks about choices, it includes abortion.)
Obama’s defense of “the innocent” on Thursday was came as he discussed global threats to freedom of religion:
“We see governments engaging in discrimination and violence against the faithful,” Obama said. “We sometimes see religion twisted in an attempt to justify hatred and persecution against other people just because of who they are, how they pray or who they love.
“Old tensions are stoked, fueling conflicts along religious lines as we’ve seen in the Central African Republic recently, even though to harm anyone in the name of faith is to diminish our own relationship with God,” Obama said.
“Extremists succumb to an ignorant nihilism that shows they don’t understand the faiths they claim to profess for killing the innocent is never fulfilling God’s will. “In fact, it is the ultimate betrayal of God’s will,” Obama said.
Elsewhere in his speech, Obama invoked “humility” and even sounded a bipartisan note:
So each time we gather, it’s a chance to set aside the rush of our daily lives; to pause with humility before an Almighty God; to seek His grace; and, mindful of our own imperfections, to remember the admonition from the Book of Romans, which is especially fitting for those of us in Washington: ‘Do not claim to be wiser than you are.’
So here we put aside labels of party and ideology, and recall what we are first: all children of a loving God; brothers and sisters called to make His work our own. But in this work, as Lincoln said, our concern should not be whether God is on our side, but whether we are on God’s side.