Javier Milei smooths waters with “imbecile” pope

Javier Milei

During the election campaign the now new Argentine president Javier Milei labelled Pope Francis a “‘filthy’ communist”, an “imbecile”, and the “representative of the Evil One seated on the throne of the house of God”.

Milei – a far-right populist and libertarian economist who was prone to brandishing a chainsaw on the campaign – got down and dirty with name-calling.

Despite the nasty labels the new president has hung on him, Francis phoned Melei to congratulate him on his presidential victory.

Milei, who when the pope’s call came through was recording a television interview, interrupted the report to talk with the Holy Father.

Milei’s office also responded respectfully.

“We are pleased to announce that His Holiness, Pope Francis, spoke with our future president to congratulate him and to express his wishes for the unity and progress for our country” Milei’s office said in a statement.

The office said Francis has promised to send a rosary gift to the new president and added they hoped to host a visit from Francis “very soon”.

Slum priests and dwellers “afraid”

Slum priests and slum dwellers say they are feeling ‘afraid’ as a result of the Argentine election result.

Some had held masses on the Pope’s behalf after hearing the names Milei was calling him during his campaign.

“We don’t know what to expect from a man who said so many contradictory things during the campaign” says Fr Lorenzo de Vedia.

Milei plans to replace the Argentine peso with the US dollar, reduce the number of government ministries from 18 to eight, and “progressively” remove social benefits.

Fr Francisco Olveira, from the progressive clergy group An Option for the Poor, said he was “very afraid about what will come.

“We don’t know what will happen and we don’t want to live in a country like that – Milei’s country.”

Bishop Oscar Ojea, president of the Argentine bishops’ Conference, expressed himself prayerfully on social media regarding the weekend’s presidential election result.

“We value the democratic day we experienced yesterday and pray the Lord will enlighten the new elected authorities and that they may work for the common good of our people” he wrote.

Vice President-elect Victoria Villarruel

Vice President-elect Victoria Villarruel

Pro-life law change

Several days before the election, Argentina’s Victoria Villarruel, now newly elected vice-president, stressed that she and Milei “are both pro-life”.

Milei has said he plans to hold a plebiscite to overturn Argentina’s 2020 law legalising abortion.

She said “there has to be a discussion … on a scientific basis and serious arguments and not as ideological as those that coloured the promulgation of the law.”

The abortion law “unfortunately ends up being stretched to infinity” she says.

“Today you find women who are aborting children at term. It seems to me that that’s not the way it ought to be.”

The Vice President-elect is a practising very traditionalist Catholic, pro-life, and opposed to same-sex marriage. She is the daughter of a soldier and fights for the victims of terrorism.


Additional reading

News category: Great reads, World.

Tags: , , ,