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Will Francis Visit Inspire Freedom in Cuba?

By Senator Marco Rubio, CNN - September 20, 2015

As Pope Francis visits the United States for the very first time, it is our privilege as Catholics and Americans to welcome His Holiness to our country. Here, he will find people who are uniquely free. We Americans are free to give our opinions and make our voices heard. We work in a free enterprise economy that, for over 200 years, has lifted countless individuals above the circumstances of their birth to achieve their God-given potential. We have been an exceptional country because, here, people are free to practice their faiths and worship God. And we have enshrined in our founding documents and promoted the fundamental truth, all around the world, that the rights of all men, women and children -- not simply Americans -- come from God.‎ Religious freedom is often referred to as America's first freedom. Our country was founded by religious exiles and built on the belief that God has given all people certain inalienable rights. Government's role in society is to protect these rights and ensure that we are safe from religious persecution and discrimination. For centuries, faith has helped us overcome problems and helped us work to achieve a more perfect union. It has inspired the many leaders who played a key role in abolishing slavery, protecting civil rights and, hopefully one day, becoming a nation where all life -- from conception to natural death -- is protected.

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