Pope Francis’ highly anticipated visit to the White House next month will put on display his common cause with President Barack Obama on many issues.
When he swept into office in 2008, Obama captured near rock-star status among millions who saw him as the embodiment of a new sense of social purpose. Now, that baton has largely passed to the outspoken Francis.
Obama has made no secret of his affection for the pope. He’s called him a “transformative leader” whose influence has transcended the Catholic community.
Francis has given a boost to Obama’s agenda by embracing many of his top priorities, including global warming, poverty and diplomacy with Iran and Cuba. Yet they disagree on other issues like abortion, birth control and parts of Obama’s health care law.