Believing in God-given rights indicates “Christian nationalism,” says a Politico journalist

Heidi Przybyla claims that “natural law” is misapplied to abortion, gay marriage

An award-winning investigative journalist for Politico claimed during an MSNBC panel Thursday that believing rights come from God is a sign of “Christian nationalism.”

Heidi Przybyla also claimed on “All In with Chris Hayes” that former President Donald Trump surrounds himself with an “extremist element of conservative Christians” who are abusing “so-called natural law” in their attempt to take back abortion and LBGT rights.

“Remember when Trump ran in 2016, a lot of the mainstream evangelicals wanted nothing to do with the divorced real estate developer who cheated on his wife with a porn star and all that, right? So what happened was he was surrounded by this more extremist element, ” said Przybyla.

“You'll hear words like 'Christian nationalism,' like the 'New Apostolic Reformation,'” she continued. “These are groups that you should learn very, very much about because they have a lot of power in Trump's circle.”

Przybyla went on to make a distinction between Christians and “Christian nationalists,” which she said are “very different.” What unites all Christian nationalists, she said, “is that they believe that our rights as Americans, as all people, do not come from any earthly authority.”

“They don't come from Congress, they don't come from the Supreme Court, they come from God,” she added. “The problem with that is that they are determining – man, men, and it is men – determine what God says to them.”

Calling it “a pillar of Catholicism”, Przybyla noted that natural law “was used for good and social justice campaigns”, including in Martin Luther King Jr.'s fight. for civil rights, but suggested “an extremist element of conservative Christians” are now misinterpreting natural law by applying it to abortion and marriage.

“And it goes much further than that, as you see, for example, with a ruling in Alabama this week that was made by judges tied to that Dominionist faction,” she said, referring to the recent Alabama Supreme Court decision that ruled frozen embryos. created by in vitro fertilization are people protected by state law.

Przybyla's comments echoed some of the claims in her recent article for Politics titled “Trump allies prepare to infuse 'Christian nationalism' in second administration,” which argued that Christian nationalism is likely to play a major role in public policy if Trump retakes the White House.

The article, which was also written by Alexander Ward, defined natural law as “the belief that there are universal rules derived from God that cannot be superseded by government or judges”, and also called it “a pillar of Catholicism” which has “been used to fight abortion, LGBTQ+ rights and contraception” in recent decades.

The main target of the article was Russell Vought, Trump's former director of the Office of Management and Budget, who was among many on X that broke out Przybyla on Friday for comments they claimed showed ignorance of basic American political thought as found in the second sentence of the Declaration of Independence.

“Mike Johnson should put a resolution on the floor reaffirming that we are one nation, under God. Make the demons vote against it or be called Christian nationalists,” Vought. tweeted.

The Politico article also hit out at former Trump administration official William Wolfe, labeling him a Christian nationalist because he “advocated to overturn same-sex marriage, end abortion and reduce access to contraceptives.”

“In a December post, [Wolfe] called for an end to sex education in schools, surrogacy and no-fault divorce across the country, as well as forcing men to “take care of their children as soon as it is determined that the child is theirs” – a clear intrusion by the government into the American private sphere. lives,” the article said.

Wolfe also contributed to the firestorm on X in response to Przybyla.

“Apparently believing in the ideas set forth in our Founding documents now makes you — you guessed it — a 'Christian nationalist,'” he. wroteadding, “Yes, Heidi, our rights do come from God. Again, the ignorance of these regime journalists is amazing. They know nothing about the American founding or Christian political thought.”

Others took aim, such as Republican Texas state representative Brian Harrison, who wrote“The very foundations of America that our founders built are under attack. Any elected Republican not doing everything they can to fight back is complicit.”

“Politics twice now, in print and with its reporter on MSNBC, has raised flags about an idea central to the founding of the American Republic,” journalist Erick Erickson. tweeted. “This is troubling because it suggests a lack of education and understanding on the part of its reporters.”

“Believing that rights come from God is now Christian nationalism,” wrote Andrew T. Walker, ethics and public theology professor at Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. “This is a civic failure, a talent failure, an intelligence failure, a historical failure, an ethical failure … should I go on? We'll always have elites. But my goodness, we need better elites.”

Przybyla responded Friday to some of the detractors she took against X, claiming her words were misunderstood.

“Although there are different wings of Christian nationalism, they are bound by their belief that our rights come from God,” she. wrote.

“If you're Hindu, Jewish, etc., this might help you understand the next part of my point, which is that they're using this for a man-made political agenda that sets this apart from other Christians who let go of these God-given rights. with our inherent right to “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” – against banning abortion, contraception, etc.”


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