The Pope’s No. 1 American Nemesis—a COVID Skeptic—Is Now Fighting for His Life

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    Alessandro Bianchi/ReutersROME—American Cardinal Raymond Burke, who staunch conservatives in the Catholic Church view as something of an anti-Pope Francis, is fighting for his life on a ventilator in a Wisconsin hospital after contracting what he often referred to as the “Wuhan Virus.” The prelate was on a vacation from Rome, where he lives.The 73-year-old cardinal has shown himself to be a COVID-19 denier, publicly scoffing at Italy’s strict lockdown measures during the height of the pandemic and was even seen strolling around Rome mask-free even when face coverings were mandated outside. He was the subject of a brief Italian news report that showcased Americans defying Italy’s anti-COVID measures, telling the newspaper that closing Catholic churches and social outdistancing was “un-Godly.”Burke has been one of Pope Francis’ harshest critics, teaming up with Stever Bannon and conservative Italian politician Matteo Salvini to condemn Francis on issues such as immigration and homosexuality. He was also tapped to be the spiritual director of a failed venture by Bannon to develop an alt-right academy in an ancient monastery in the foothills of Rome, which has been curtailed by the Italian government. Read more at The Daily Beast.

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