Obama: ‘I Stand Up for Foreign Aid’ to Answer ‘Biblical Call’

Terence P. Jeffrey | September 13, 2012 | 12:27pm EDT
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President Barack Obama in West Palm Beach, Fla. on Sept. 9, 2012. (AP Photo/Terry Renna)

(CNSNews.com ) - In a video posted Sept. 10 on the "Catholics for Obama" page on his campaign website, President Barack Obama says that one of the reasons he supports foreign aid is because he is answering the biblical call “to care for the least of these.”

“When I decide to stand up for foreign aid, it’s not just about strengthening alliances or promoting democratic values, it’s also about the Biblical call to care for the least of these, for the poor for those at the margins of our society,” Obama says on the video.

As president, Obama renewed U.S. aid to the United Nations Population Fund, which helps China with it coercive population control program, and continued to provide funding to the Egyptian military, which according to the State Department killed 25 Egyptian Christians last October.

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Presidents Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush and George W. Bush enforced what was called the “Mexico City Policy," which prohibited U.S. aid to international organizations that did not certify that they would not perform or promote abortions.

“Presidents Reagan and George H. W. Bush also suspended grants to the U.N. Population Fund (UNFPA) due to evidence of coercive family planning practices in China,” the Congressional Research Service said in a report published in June.

“President Bill Clinton resumed UNFPA funding and rescinded the Mexico City policy in 1993,” said CRS. “In 2001, however, President George W. Bush reapplied the Mexico City policy restrictions. The Bush Administration also suspended U.S. contributions to UNFPA from FY2002 to FY2008 following a State Department investigation of family planning programs in China. In January 2009, President Barack Obama issued a memorandum rescinding the Mexico City policy. The President also stated that the United States would resume U.S. contributions to UNFPA.”

According to CRS, the Obama administration gave the UNFPA $50 million in 2009, $55 million in 2010, $40 million in 2011, and $35 million this year.

The latest State Department report on human rights in China described that nation's coercive population control program.

“Female infanticide, sex-selective abortions, and the abandonment and neglect of baby girls remained problems due to the traditional preference for sons and the coercive birth limitation policy,” the State Department said.

In March, the Obama administration approved continued aid to the Egyptian military.

“On Friday, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton approved the resumption of military aid, which totals $1.3 billion annually,” the New York Times said in a March 26 editorial. “The money was held up in October because of a new law that required the administration to certify that Egypt was making progress on basic freedoms before military aid could be released.”

“Mrs. Clinton did not certify that Egypt had met the democratic standards that Congress set,” said the Times editorial. “Instead, she waived that requirement. That move allowed money for F-16 fighters and Abrams M1A1 tanks to flow again.”

The most recent report on religious freedom in Egypt released by the State Deparment earlier this year says that Egyptian forces killed 25 Coptic Christians last October.

“Government security forces used violence against mostly Coptic Christian demonstrators on October 9, killing 25 persons and injuring over 300," says the report.

In his statement saying that he stands up for foreign aid because of the biblical call “to care for the least of these,” President Obama was referring to Chapter 25 of the Gospel of Matthew.

“’When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him,’” Jesus says in that chapter of the Gospel.

“And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats," said Jesus. "He will place the sheep on his right and the goats on his left. Then the king will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father. Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me, ill and you cared for me, in prison and you visited me.’ Then the righteous will answer him and say, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? When did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? When did we see you ill or in prison, and visit you?’ And the king will say to them in reply, ‘Amen, I say to you, whatever you did for one of these least brothers of mine, you did for me.’ Then he will say to those on his left, ‘Depart from me, you accursed, into the eternal fire prepared for the devil and his angels.”

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