U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations Samantha Power regards Pope Francis as the Barack Obama of pontiffs, so much so that she used Obama's 2008 hope and change slogan as a summary of the new pope's first year in office.
"[Jon Favreau] writes for many of us in describing People's Pope's growing appeal," Power tweeted Tuesday. "Hope and change in the Vatican, indeed."
Favreau wrote that "it seems as if the pope is not just signaling tolerance or celebrating diversity but placing a bet on humanity" in a Daily Beast column published Tuesday. (If that style of praise for Pope Francis sounds familiar, it might be because Favreau used to write Obama's speeches.) He also hailed the pope for "restor[ing] social justice as the central mission of the Catholic Church."
Power makes explicit what seems to be an implicit message of Favreau's column — that Pope Francis is more congenial to Democrats.
"It remains to be seen whether the pope’s bet will pay off in the form of more converts to Catholicism or policies in the U.S. and elsewhere that do a better job of alleviating poverty and inequality," Favreau wrote, as Democrats try to build a winning 2014 campaign theme around income inequality.
Former Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin suggested that Pope Francis "sound[ed] kind of liberal" while promoting her book about Christmas in November.
"[U]nless I really dig deep into what his messaging is, and do my own homework, I’m not going to just trust what I hear in the media," Palin said to CNN's Jake Tapper.
Palin's comments provoked some mockery, but Favreau makes a similar point. "[L]egacies are defined by how we choose to prioritize the limited, precious time we have, and that is especially true for a pope who has at most one or two decades to make his mark," he wrote.