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Warnock hits Johnson for Trans Day of Visibility criticism: ‘Opposite of the Christian faith’

Sen. Raphael Warnock (D-Ga.) denounced GOP attacks against President Biden over marking Trans Day of Visibility on Sunday, specifically calling out Speaker Mike Johnson’s (R-La.) criticisms as the “opposite of the Christian faith.”

Trans Day of Visibility is observed every year on March 31, this year coincidentally falling on Easter. Conservatives criticized Biden for the declaration, despite Biden acknowledging the day every year, with Johnson calling it an “outrageous and abhorrent” attack on the Christianity.

“Apparently, the speaker finds trans people abhorrent, and I think he ought to think about that,” Warnock said in a CNN “State of the Union” interview with Dana Bash on Sunday.

Warnock, a reverend who gave an Easter sermon at Ebenezer Baptist Church, Martin Luther King Jr.’s church in Atlanta, on Sunday, said the criticisms from Johnson, the Trump campaign and other conservatives go against scripture.

“This is just one more instance of folks who do not know how to lead us trying to divide us,” Warnock said. “This is the opposite of the Christian faith. Jesus centered the marginalized. He’s centered the poor.”

“And in a moment like this, we need voices, particularly voices of faith, who would use our faith not as a weapon to beat other people down but as a bridge to bring all of us together,” he added.

The White House also pushed back on the criticism Saturday, noting that Biden is himself a devout Catholic.

“As a Christian who celebrates Easter with Family, President Biden stands for bringing people together and upholding the dignity and freedoms of every American,” spokesperson Andrew Bates said in a statement to multiple outlets. 

“Sadly, it’s unsurprising politicians are seeking to divide and weaken our country with cruel, hateful, and dishonest rhetoric. President Biden will never abuse his faith for political purposes or for profit.”

The Transgender Day of Visibility was started 15 years ago to celebrate transgender people and point to the discrimination they face. Easter lands on a different date each year.

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