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Besides A.G. Barr, Mick Mulvaney and Pat Cipollone are Opus Dei, too

All three are involved in Trump’s impeachment.

During his July 25th call with Ukraine Pres. Zelensky, Trump urged Zelensky to work with his personal attorney, Rudy Giuliani, and Attorney General William Barr to investigate Joe Biden and his son, Humter.

When Trump’s chief of staff, Mick Mulvaney, was asked whether a “demand for an investigation [into the Bidens] was part of the reason that [Trump] ordered withholding  funding to Ukraine,” Mulvaney replied, “…. We do that all the time with foreign policy … Get over it. There’s going to be political influence in foreign policy.

White House counsel, Pat Cipollone, is the “architect” of Trump’s fight against impeachment and “the attorney who will play a leading role in Trump’s Senate impeachment trial defense” according to NPR.

Barr and Cipollone are former board members of Opus Dei’s Catholic Information Center (CIC), as noted by the National Catholic Register.”

Mulvaney, who is also director of the Office of Budget and Management, is a member according to the official news service of the U.S. Catholic bishops.

Opus Dei is a secret society – member’s names are unknown unless self-disclosed – and an official arm of the Catholic Church. (Pope Francis champions Opus Dei.)   The society “uses the Catholic Church for its own ends which are money and power …. Its members form a transnational elite. They seek to colonize the summits of power. They work with stealth – ‘holy discretion’ – and practice ‘divine deception,’” declared Robert Hutchison in the introduction to his book, Their Kingdom Come: Inside the Secret World of Opus Dei.

Located on K Street just two blocks from the White House, the CIC’s “members and leaders continue to have an outsize impact on policy and politics. It is the conservative spiritual and intellectual center … and its influence is felt in all of Washington’s corridors of power,” reported the Washington Post.

Pompeo’s new commission

Opus Dei’s influence has extended even to the State Department. “U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo formally announced the formation of a new Commission on Unalienable Rights, which will bypass the State Department’s existing human rights infrastructure and bring a ‘natural law’ lens to examining U.S. human rights policy,” Peter Montgomery wrote in July.

“Natural law theory has been used for a long time by Catholic Church leaders and theologians who reject LGBT people’s identities and their relationships,” New Ways Ministry’s Bob Shine wrote. Pope Paul VI’s 1968 Humanae Vitae encyclical “relied on so-called natural law arguments to defend the Church’s ban on contraception,” Gonzaga University professor Patrick McCormick noted several years ago,” reported Montgomery

“News of the planned commission emerged when it was reported that anti-LGBTQ activist, Princeton University scholar and conservative Catholic Robert George had played a prominent role in the creation of the commission,” Montgomery reported.

George is a regular speaker at the CIC. In October, he received the CIC’s award for “John Paul II New Evangelization” as announced by the Witherspoon Institute. George, “this country’s most influential conservative Christian thinker” according to the New York Times, is chairman of the board emeritus of the institute. The Witherspoon Institute is funded by Opus Dei affiliates.

On Dec. 20, George called Trump’s impeachment “a mistake…. Precedents like this promote the idea that impeachment can be used as a political tool.”

The new commission is chaired by Mary Ann Glendon, “a Harvard University law professor who serves with George on the on the advisory council for Catholic University’s human rights program.”

Glendon, named to the supervisory board for the Vatican Bank by Pope Francis, “has also helped promote the Religious Right’s portrayal of U.S. and European advocacy for the human rights of LGBTQ people as ‘neocolonialism,’” Montgomery wrote.

Also, “Glendon is a board member of Becket, formerly known as The Becket Fund, which represented Hobby Lobby in its successful effort to get conservative Supreme Court justices to declare that a for-profit corporation could claim exemption from generally applicable laws based on the religious beliefs of company owners,” added Montgomery.

Before the case was settled, Pope Francis met with Steve Green, president of Hobby Lobby. Green, who is a Baptist, said the pope “mentioned the issue is important to Catholics” adding that the pope also “asked when the ruling was going to come down.”

Regarding Pompeo and Glendon’s new commission, “If this administration truly wanted to support people’s rights, it would use the global framework already in place,” Joanne Lin, national director of advocacy and government affairs for Amnesty International USA told Montgomery.

Pope Francis granted a private audience to Pompeo on Oct. 3, an honor not bestowed, with the exception of Pres. Obama, to any U.S. Democrat politician or office holder.

The new Commission on Unalienable Rights held its first meeting in late October.

Mulvaney, the Catholic activist

Mulvaney “has met with a long list of lobbyists, corporate executives and wealthy people with business interests before the government.” His meeting with Opus Dei’s Jeff Bell, architect of Reaganomics, covered “religious and political matters,” as reported by the Washington Post and ProPublica.

At the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast in Washington on April 23, Mulvaney spoke briefly about Trump. “Over the past two-and-a-half years, I think you can see the principles of our faith being manifested …. To be part of that, has been very invigorating,” said Mulvaney,

In August, Mulvaney and “far-right Hungarian Prime Minister Viktor Orbán were among participants in a secret meeting of far-right Catholic politicians at the Fátima Marian shrine. Portuguese newspaper Público reported on the secretive meeting in Portugal of the International Catholic Legislators Network (ICLN). But the full list of attendees and the agenda at the ICLN has been kept in the strictest confidentiality,” according to the Novena news service.

On Dec. 18, Mulvaney had an “off the record briefing” with Catholic leaders. “He touched on ‘all the major issues’ that then-presidential candidate Trump discussed in his 2016 letter to Catholics” –  “pro-life” and government protections for Catholic institutions that discriminate against the LGBTQ community.

The good news is that the Trump administration could be replaced in 2020. The bad news is that his appointment of life-time judges as directed by another CIC board member, Leonard Leo, will impact the U.S. judiciary – including the Supreme Court – for decades to come.

Other related blogs:

Opus Dei’s influence is felt in all of Washington’s corridors of power.”

William Barr is Opus Dei.

Why Catholic officials have been so deferential to Trump.

Betty Clermont is author of The Neo-Catholics: Implementing Christian Nationalism in America.

4 Responses

  1. Well done, Betty. The question I have is U.S. Attorney John H. Durham, who is often described as “a devout Catholic”, also Opus Dei. That could explain a lot — or at least, require more inquiry.

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