But even though he is obviously comfortable parsing the Bible when he believes it bolsters his favored policies and shames his opponents, there’s one issue on which Buttigieg remains afraid to exercise his moral authority.

Asked on Morning Joe in late March whether he supports bills allowing women to obtain an abortion for nearly any reason up until birth, Buttigieg offered only a cop-out. “When we’re talking about some of those situations . . . the involvement of a male government official like me is not helpful,” he said.

When the question next arose, this time during his Fox News town hall in May, Buttigieg dodged again. “Do you believe, at any point in pregnancy, whether it’s at six weeks or eight weeks or 24 weeks or whenever, that there should be any limit on a woman’s right to abortion?” asked Fox News host Chris Wallace.

“I think the dialogue has gotten so caught up in when you draw the line that we’ve gotten away from the fundamental question of who gets to draw the line,” Buttigieg replied. “And I trust women to draw the line.”