When you first think about Pope Francis and President Obama, you might not think they have much in common aside from holding a position of leadership and tremendous power. Upon careful inspection however, they do seem to share quite a bit in common.
Both men came to office following a very right wing and unpopular predecessor and both men while using much more progressive rhetoric, still seem to carry out the same (or similar) positions on issues as their predecessor.
The Catholic Church still opposes marriage equality for gays, still opposes equal rights for women, still opposes contraception, etc. The only difference with Pope Francis is that he isn’t a jerk about it. He seems like such a nice guy who is all about peace and love and yet none of the Catholic Church’s actual policies have changed.
Obama is the same way. The guy won the Nobel Peace prize. He says he wants to close Guantanamo, legalize marriage for gays, and hold Wall Street accountable. But at the end of the day, we are still at war five years later and are posturing for another war. Warrentless wiretapping not only continues, but is worse than it ever was under Bush, Guantanamo is still open, Gays still can’t get married in most states and Obama did nothing in the states in which it is legal, and he continues to “not look backward” when it comes to policing Wall Street.
Neither of these men changed the policies of their predecessors and yet both are considered by the public as much more likeable leaders. Both are considered to be wildly liberal and even progressive despite their right wing policies.
I guess you can continue to uphold horrible right wing policies as long as you do it with a smile on your face and tell people what they want to hear.