Jeb Bush Challenges Pope Francis’ Forgiveness Of Abortion: Women Should Be ‘Repentant’ (VIDEO)

On Tuesday, Pope Francis did something that had never been done in the history of the Catholic faith before: call on the religion’s leaders to accept and stop demonizing women who have had abortions. During a speech, Francis told his audience:

“I have decided, notwithstanding anything to the contrary, to concede to all priests for the jubilee year the discretion to absolve of the sin of abortion those who have procured it and who, with contrite heart, seek forgiveness for it.”

It was an amazing, long-overdue message from the pontiff, but some conservatives weren’t ready to hear it. As many 2016 Republican presidential candidates are still hell-bent on banning abortion and stripping women of their rights to make decisions for themselves, one particular candidate – Jeb Bush – has already challenged Pope Francis’ call to action for the church.

Shortly after Pope Francis’ announcement, Bush gave an interview with Fox News, where he was asked what his thoughts were of the pontiff’s suggestion. Instead of agreeing with the head of the Catholic faith, Bush (who is also Catholic) said that women should repent if they wanted God’s forgiveness after having an abortion.

You can watch the clip below:

During the interview, host Martha MacCullum asked Bush if Pope Francis’ new guidelines for priests took him by surprise. Bush answered:

“Look, I think we could all use a lot of mercy in this world. And the pope is a loving person, and having absolution — [allowing] the priest to give absolution is extraordinary, but I’m not surprised at all.”

Implying that he is not as much of “a loving person” as the Pope, Bush suggested that women should be “repentant” if they have had an abortion, and that he believes Pope Francis and others should “also focus on mercy for the unborn, the hundreds of thousands of babies that will die.”

He continued:

“I think we need to have a society that protects life from the beginning to end, and we should be a repentant society for sure. And mercy should be at the heart of everything we do.”

Bush’s comments come as no shock – Republicans have challenged Pope Francis on climate change and they are doing so again with abortion. The Pope, who is an actual scientist unlike most GOP politicians, is becoming an increasingly important political figure and conservatives are absolutely hating it. As the Pope continues to pull back the layers of hate, fear and prejudice that have become powerful forces of the Catholic faith, conservatives are becoming less able to hide behind their religion as basis for their bigotry.

Featured image courtesy of Michael Vadon via Flickr and Pope Francis Twitter.