Matthew Dowd, the Democratic candidate for lieutenant governor of Texas, made a bizarre tweet on Sunday claiming that the current left-wing “woke” culture is synonymous with ‘decency. Dowd, an Irish Catholic, posited that Jesus would be left-wing.
“As I sat in church today I was thinking that if Jesus were here today he would be accused of being woke,” Dowd wrote. “How about we just say it is human decency to treat all with respect and dignity and that it is constitutional to say all men and women are equal.”
Among American conservatives, woke has come to be used primarily as an insult. In this pejorative sense, woke means “following an intolerant and moralizing ideology.”
Dowd is a veteran of many political campaigns, most notably serving as the chief strategist for the Bush–Cheney 2004 presidential campaign and working as an ABC News political analyst after which he ‘converted’ from being a career Republican and joined the democratic party. Like President Biden and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, Dowd is a Catholic politician who advocates for abortion legislation.
Dowd doubled down, tweeting a follow up:
“what is unreal is many on the ‘Christian’ way right think they own what it means to be a person of faith or a follower of Jesus. And when those of us who are Christian speak out with a different message based on the loving way of Jesus, they get so nasty and cruel.”
Sen. Jason Rapert (R-Ark.) tweeted a response to Dowd:
I have news for you Matthew Dowd,” Rapert wrote. “Jesus wasn’t woke and he isn’t pro-choice either. Stop redefining Jesus and the Bible. Proverbs 6:16-19. Praying for @DanPatrick to be re-elected in #Texas.”
The passage he referred to says: ‘There are six things the Lord hates, seven that are detestable to him: haughty eyes, a lying tongue, hands that shed innocent blood, a heart that devises wicked schemes, feet that are quick to rush into evil, a false witness who pours out lies and a person who stirs up conflict in the community.’
Not everyone on the left is enamored of ‘wokeness’. Veteran Democratic strategist James Carville blamed the social phenomenon for the pivotal loss by Democrat Terry McAuliffe in the gubernatorial race in Virginia.
“Well, what went wrong is this stupid wokeness,” said Carville on PBS NewsHour. “I mean, this ‘defund the police’ lunacy, this ‘take Abraham Lincoln’s name off of schools,’ that — people see that.”
“They’re expressing language that people just don’t use. And there’s a backlash and a frustration at that,” Carville said.
Dowd is notorious for political hypocrisy. In 2018, Dowd called for all “white male Christians” to stop running for political office.
“We as white male Christians should do what real leadership demands and practice a level of humility which demonstrates strength by stepping back from the center of the room and begin to give up our seats at the table,” he wrote in an ABC op-ed.
Just as his Catholic faith does not prevent him from advocating for abortion, this belief in stepping aside did not prevent him from running his current campaign.
Dowd’s opponent, Republican Dan Patrick, began life as a Catholic but now professes to be an evangelical Baptist. Outspoken about his faith, Patrick was baptized in the Jordan River during a trip to Israel in 2016.