Vice President Mike Pence on Wednesday criticized ABC’s "The View" for being religiously intolerant after co-host Joy Behar compared his Christian faith to mental illness.
Discussing Omarosa Manigault Newman’s comments about Pence, Behar said Pence’s belief that Jesus speaks to him qualified as "mental illness." co-host Sunny Hostin also said Pence put a "religious veneer" on his views and said it is "dangerous" having him in office.
Pence told Axios‘ Mike Allen that criticism "comes with this job," but he argued that this particular criticism went beyond him and insulted the faith of all believers.
"An overwhelming major of Americans cherish their faith, and we have all different types of faith in this country," Pence said. "But I have to tell you: To have ABC maintain a broadcast forum that compared Christianity to mental illness is just wrong."
"And it’s an insult not to me, but to the vast majority of the American people who, like me, cherish their faith," he added.
He spoke about his own religious habits, which include reading Scripture and praying with his wife each day, and he credited faith with sustaining him.
"I can honestly tell you my faith sustains me in all that I do, and it’s just a regular part of our lives," he said. "But I’m not unusual. I think I’m a very typical American; whatever your faith tradition, people understand that."
He went on to say that Behar’s comment illustrates a larger problem of denigration and ignorance of Americans’ faith and values in the mainstream media.
"I just think it demonstrates how out of touch some people in the mainstream media are with the faith and values of the American people that you could have a major network like ABC permit a forum for invective against religion like that," he said. "I just call them out on it, not because of what was said about me, but it’s just simply wrong for ABC to have a television program that expresses that kind of religious intolerance. We’re better than that, our country is better than that."