GOP Senator Marco Rubio of Florida blasted left-leaning media, Politico, which published an article commenting that he was tweeting "the most Republican part of the bible," referring to his use of verses from the book of Proverbs in the Old Testament.
"Proverbs is the Republican part of the bible? I don't think Solomon had yet joined the GOP when he wrote the first 29 chapters of Proverbs," Rubio wrote, after an article in Politico said, "Each day, the Florida senator is quoting a verse from Proverbs, the GOP's favorite part of the book."
The article couldn't stop Rubio from quoting Proverbs.
Hours after commenting on the Politico article, the senator's tweet read, "Where words are many, sin is not wanting; but those who restrain their lips do well. Proverbs 10:19."
The article quoted Rubio's tweet from last month: "As dogs return to their vomit, so fools repeat their folly. Proverbs 26:11."
The author, Joel B. Baden, professor of Hebrew Bible at Yale Divinity School, wrote that the senator had been tweeting bible verses since May 16.
"He has tweeted a biblical verse almost every day since then. Almost all of them come from the Old Testament, and specifically the book of Proverbs," Baden wrote, remarking that "Proverbs is probably the most Republican book of the entire Bible."
The author said other Republicans also like to quote Proverbs, citing Ben Carson as an example.
During the 2016 presidential campaign, Carson "compared himself favorably to the blustery style of then-candidate Donald Trump by quoting Proverbs 22:4: 'By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches and honor and life.'"
Gerald Ford's favorite Bible passage was Proverbs 3:5-6: "Trust wholeheartedly in Yahweh [the Lord], put no faith in your own perception; in every course you take, have him in mind: He will see that your paths are smooth," Baden added. "Ford repeated this when he served in the Navy during World War II, throughout his presidency and in his swearing-in."
President Trump also likes the idea of Proverbs, the author went on to say, quoting from a September 2015 interview on CBN. Trump claimed in that interview that some of his most appreciated verses were from Proverbs, however, he said his favorite verse in Proverbs was "never bend to envy," which doesn't appear in Proverbs or anywhere else in the Bible.
"There is surely nothing wrong with a politician turning to the Bible for spiritual, ethical and moral guidance," Baden wrote. "The Bible is the foundational text of Western civilization, after all. But concentrating exclusively on the parts of it that affirm one's own perspective is a form of confirmation bias."
Baden suggested Rubio should read and tweet from Ecclesiastes or from prophets such as Amos: "Because you trample on the poor and take from them levies of grain, you have built houses of stone — but you shall not live in them" (Amos 5:11).
The author also quoted Leviticus 19:33–34, "When a stranger resides with you in your land, you shall not wrong him. The stranger who resides with you shall be to you as one of your citizens; you shall love him as yourself."
When Rubio first started posting Bible verses to Twitter, there were some negative reactions, which Rubio described as a "Twitter freak out." One political blogger called the Bible verses "oddly terrifying."