GUEST COLUMN: Before you vote, ask yourself: What would Jesus do?

The vast majority of churchgoers in Livingston County are Christians, and 62 percent of those are, like me, Catholics. Christians should always strive to follow the words and teachings of Christ.

Including when they vote.

Here are some comparisons of the values of Christ and those of President Trump:

Rich and Poor

Christ says, “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” (MT25:40).

Trump gave massive tax breaks to rich people and companies, and eroded the safety net for the poor.

Health Care

Jesus describes the Good Samaritan as a role model, and tells us to “Go and do likewise.” (Luke 10:37)

President Trump’s actions have led to higher health insurance rates, weakened coverage, and more Americans without health insurance.


Jesus himself became a refugee, seeking asylum when the Holy Family fled to Egypt to escape King Herod. Jesus preaches that salvation depends on how truly Christians welcome the stranger and serve the dispossessed (Matt. 25:35).

Trump says, “Why are we having all these people from s**thole countries come here?” and separates children from their parents who are seeking asylum.

Racism and White Supremacy

Christ was clear that we are all God’s children, “There is neither Jew nor Greek . . . for you are all one in Christ Jesus” (Gal 3:28).

Trump told four minority congresswomen, all American citizens (three born in the US), to “go back” to where they came from.

Respect for All

Christ says, “As I have loved you, so you should love one another. This is how I will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”   (John 13:34-35)

Trump demeans and degrades anyone who disagrees with him, calling them Sleepy Creepy, Slimeball and Pencil Neck.


On many occasions, Jesus and his disciples broke with societal and religious norms with demonstrations of respect for women.

Trump says, “When you’re a star, they let you do it. You can do anything. … Grab them by the p***y. You can do anything.”

I implore all Christians to look into your hearts, examine your faith and open your eyes to Trump’s true character and his lack of Christian values.

Leo E. Hanifin
Brighton, MI

(Note: For a more robust article with a more complete discussion of these issues, including more examples, quotes, data and sources, email the author at

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Brighton Township resident Dr. Leo E. Hanifin, a member of the M-1 Rail Board of Directors and chairperson of the Livingston County Transportation Coalition, is Dean Emeritus, University of Detroit Mercy (UDM), having served as Dean its College of Engineering and Science for 21 years. He also served as the leader of UDM's Transportation Research Program and the Michigan-Ohio University Transportation Center (a coalition of five universities). He led several major studies of transportation in southeast Michigan and across the country, was co-PI on a study of public opinion in the RTA region, and has hosted advocacy workshops in Detroit and its suburbs. He served on the RTA's Citizens Advisory Committee and teaches Transit as a Critical Element of Community Development in UDM's Masters in Community Development Program.