Director of the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Mick Mulvaney says past administrations have leveraged foreign aid to other countries to advance policy initiatives such as abortion and gay marriage.
“Persecution often times stops far short of life-and-death matters,” Mulvaney explained in a speech at the State Department’s Ministerial to Advance Religious Freedom session on Tuesday. “Our U.S. taxpayer dollars are used to discourage Christian values in other democratic countries,” Mulvaney said he discovered during visits to sub-Saharan Africa.
Mulvaney said he was shocked to learn how previous administrations used foreign aid to coerce other countries to ignore their own laws against things like abortion and gay marriage:
“It was stunning to me that my government under a previous administration would go to folks in sub-Saharan Africa and say, ‘We know that you have a law against abortion, but if you enforce that law, you’re not going to get any of our money. We know you have a law against gay marriage, but if you enforce that law, we’re not going to give you any money.’”
This is a type of religious persecution he never expected from the U.S. government, Mulvaney said:
“That’s a different type of religious persecution. … That is a different type of religious persecution that I never expected to see. I never expected to see that as an American Christian. That we would we be doing that to other folks.”