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Kaine Statement On Pope Francis’ Address To A Joint Meeting Of Congress

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on Pope Francis’ address to a joint meeting of Congress earlier today:

“The Pope used the stories of four great Americans to say, ‘you are a great nation and you’ve had great leaders.’ Abraham Lincoln, Dr. Martin Luther King, Dorothy Day and Thomas Merton – this is who we are as a people. And in a world that still has huge needs, we have a unique role to do something about it.

“We’re in a world of politics where people have low expectations of us, and Members of Congress sometimes even have low expectations of each other and what we can accomplish. But what I believe Pope Francis was trying to convey to us today was that he has high expectations of us because he can look into our history and culture and see these examples that have been really powerful, and that there isn’t any reason we can’t rise to that same level of achievement today - whether it’s tackling climate change or economic injustice or the migrant crisis that is seen throughout the world. I love the way he set high expectations for us and talked about the lives of these four Americans as exemplary in terms of what we can do if we work together.”