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Saint Hugo

The Religious Left begins its embrace of Hugo Chávez.

12:00 AM, May 18, 2006 • By MARK D. TOOLEY
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Bourgeois warned that "the United States and George Bush are here to do everything they can to make sure that this revolution fails. Because if it succeeds, if the poor here will get justice, if there will be a real re-distribution of the resources here (especially the wealth, the money, the power) and in a country like Venezuela, this will spread to other countries. And so, what is at work of course and this is no secret, the U.S. is pumping money into Venezuela as we pumped money into Chile when Allende was there."

The American Religious Left is prepared to support Chávez. When Pat Robertson quixotically suggested--and later retracted--that the United States could assassinate Chávez, many mainline church officials responded with immediate outrage. Slamming Robertson for his latest inanity was no doubt a pleasure for them. Sadly, these clerics will likely view defending Chávez from more serious international criticism not just as a pleasure, but a duty.

Mark D. Tooley directs the United Methodist committee at the Institute on Religion and Democracy.