Who knew? The secular liberal elites at The Washington Post are suddenly deeply concerned about the honor of the Catholic Church.
So concerned, in fact, that The Post’s resident editorialist Dana Milbank penned an entire op-ed blasting President Trump’s decision to nominate Callista Gingrich, the wife of Trump advisor Newt Gingrich, to the post of Ambassador Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary of the United States of America to the Holy See. As the title suggests, the post is largely honorific and ceremonial; the Vatican isn’t exactly a major diplomatic player on the world stage, especially in the wake of Pope Francis’ bizarre far-left ranting.
So why does Milbank care so much about the post? Simple. He hates Trump and he’s willing to attack him for everything and anything.
Consider Milbank’s line of attack against Callista Gingrich. He hits her with everything in his disposal like a Puritan zealot accusing a woman of witchcraft.
After he lists her qualifications and suggests that she’s not qualified for the post, Milbank brings Callista Gingrich’s sex life into the conversation.
“Newt carried on a six-year extramarital affair with Callista in the 1990s when she, 23 years his junior, was a House staffer and he, as speaker, led the impeachment of Bill Clinton over his extramarital affair with an intern,” self-righteously pontificates Milbank.
Assuming the tone of cleric, the left-leaning Milbank invokes a decades-old case of adultery to humiliate Callista and assert that her private life was at odds with church doctrine.
Indeed, he actually quotes a Catholic journalist to justify his implicit condemnation of her behavior.
As a result, Callista’s nomination is an “insult” to the pope, according to Milbank.
“But if it is good news for the Gingriches, it is an(other) insult to Francis from Trump, who has sparred with the pope over immigration and climate change,” writes Milbank.
Now, it’s quite bizarre for a Post editorialist to show this much deference to the pontiff of the Catholic Church. But Francis’ politics ostensibly align with Milbank’s, so perhaps it’s an unholy marriage of convenience.
But the level of hypocrisy is astounding.
First of all, the Church’s complicity in the systematic abuse of young boys at the hands of pedophilic priests doesn’t exactly give it a leg to stand on when it comes to the morality of sexual deviance. Callista is a saint compared to some of the priests who are still employed at parishes across the world.
Secondly, whatever decisions Callista and Newt made in their private lives decades ago should not be used as fodder against their moral character today. Both Callista and Newt are devout Catholics who believe in all the relevant doctrines. They have presumably atoned for whatever sins they may have committed (although that shouldn’t matter given the fact that past sexual discretions probably won’t impede Callista’s ability to do her job).
Bottom line: Milbank and The Post could do better. Callista and Newt have been married for 23 years. Digging up dirt about well-publicized infidelity in the past to make an appeal to religious purity is a joke. No, Callista’s nomination is not an “insult” to the pope. The pope’s radical political grandstanding may be an insult to the Church.