Donald Trump says he has no choice but to "scare" Pope Francis: "I'd say, 'ISIS wants to get you'"

GOP candidate dings pontiff for critique of free market capitalism

By Sophia Tesfaye

Published August 20, 2015 3:50PM (EDT)

Donald Trump                      (Reuters/Brendan Mcdermid)
Donald Trump (Reuters/Brendan Mcdermid)

Republican presidential frontrunner, Donald Trump, has taken to the burgeoning conservative tradition of criticizing Pope Francis in a new CNN interview.

Speaking to CNN's Chris Cuomo, the billionaire businessman said he took issue with Pope Francis' warnings that capitalism can be "toxic" and "corrupt" and said he is "going to have to scare the Pope" in response to his critique of the free market:

I'm gonna have to scare the Pope because it's the only thing ... The Pope, I hope, can only be scared by God. But the truth is -- you know, if you look at what's going on -- they better hope that capitalism works, because it's the only thing we have right now. And it's a great thing when it works properly.

How exactly would Trump "scare" the Pope?

"I'd say, 'ISIS wants to get you,'" Trump told Cuomo. "You know that ISIS wants to go in and take over the Vatican? You have heard that. You know, that's a dream of theirs, to go into Italy."

Trump, a Protestant, said that while Pope Francis had become increasingly political, he has "great respect for the Pope," adding, "I like him. He seems like a pretty good guy."


Sophia Tesfaye

Sophia Tesfaye is Salon's senior editor for news and politics, and resides in Washington, D.C. You can find her on Twitter at @SophiaTesfaye.

MORE FROM Sophia TesfayeFOLLOW @SophiaTesfaye

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

2016 Elections Capitalism Chris Cuomo Cnn Conservative Christianity Donald Trump Isis Pope Francis I Religion