Ohio Governor and former Republican presidential hopeful John Kasich has stated that he believes the decline of religious practice in the United States is fueling rising incivility.
In an interview with NBC’s “Meet The Press” that aired Sunday, Kasich commented on a host of issues regarding the current political climate.
In particular, Kasich was asked his opinion of Fox News analyst Laura Ingraham’s recent controversial remarks bemoaning the apparent changes immigrants were making to the United States.
“In some parts of the country it does seem like the America that we know and love doesn’t exist anymore,” said Ingraham. “Massive demographic changes have been foisted upon the American people. And they’re changes that none of us ever voted for and most of us don’t like.”
While saying he didn’t want to turn the program into a “religious hour,” Kasich remarked that he felt that a fundamental problem in America was that many “have not come to understand what faith is.”
“Loving your neighbor, elevating others sometimes in front of yourself, putting yourself in other people’s shoes. And when we don’t do that, we lose the essence of our country,” said Kasich.
“When my father and my uncle talked about the Great Depression, everybody pulled together and what we’re seeing now is people pulling apart rather than coming together.”
Kasich described this coming together as “an element of religiosity,” adding that “we need the compass back,” noting that he believes this moral compass “comes from on high.”
Kasich’s positive views of immigrants may put him out of step with a slim majority in his party. According to a Public Religion Research Institute poll published July 17, 50 percent of Republicans said that increasing numbers of non-white race and ethnic groups immigrating to the U.S. will have a “mostly negative” impact. Fifty-two percent of white evangelical Protestants agreed. Only 31 percent of the full sample thought the same.
Kasich also spoke about his concerns over the direction of the Republican Party due to the rise of President Donald Trump, who defeated Kasich along with over a dozen others to become the GOP nominee in 2016.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Michael Gryboski