The campaigns of candidates like Roy Moore and Donald J. Trump were plagued with accusations of sexual assault and subject to moral controversy, but despite this, one particular demographic remained their strongest allies – white Christian evangelicals.
Secularists, non-Christians and progressive Christians have long been critics of Religious Right leader Jerry Falwell Jr. But lately Falwell has had to deal with flak from an unexpected source: fellow evangelicals who are angry over his support for President Donald J. Trump and his blend of nationalist and fundamentalist rhetoric.
Back in the late 1990s when Roy Moore was a local judge in Etowah County, Ala., he was sued by the American Civil Liberties Union for opening courtroom sessions with prayer and displaying a hand-carved Ten Commandments monument in his courtroom.
Moore had garnered national attention with his vow to defy any ruling against him, and his defenders thought the time was right to bring him to Washington, D.C., for a press conference.
Religious Right favorite Jerry Falwell Jr. recently spoke with white nationalist propaganda website, Breitbart, and made some comments that made it clear that the Religious Right’s relationship with the Republican Party is (unsurprisingly) about political power, not religious values.
Religious Right groups have argued for a long time that a president has to do more than oversee the economy, direct international relations and run the Executive branch. He or she is also expected to set a moral example. During the presidencies of Bill Clinton and Barack Obama, Religious Right groups frequently complained – unfairly, in the view of many Americans – that these two men had failed in that regard.
I got a press release Wednesday from Liberty University, the fundamentalist Christian college in Lynchburg, Va., founded by Jerry Falwell, crowing because President Donald J. Trump will speak at commencement ceremonies there May 13.
President Donald J. Trump has named Religious Right favorite son Jerry Falwell Jr. to lead a committee tasked with finding ways to deregulate higher education.
Falwell, president of the fundamentalist Liberty University his father founded in Virginia, was an early supporter of Trump’s presidency. Falwell previously said he was offered but declined the position of secretary of education, a job that instead went to school privatization proponent Betsy DeVos. The task force will work under the direction of the U.S. Department of Education.
President Donald Trump has clarified the role of Religious Right favorite son Jerry Falwell Jr. in his administration: leading a task force on higher education.
It hasn’t been a secret what members of the Religious Right sought under their Christmas trees this year, and voters playing the role of Santa Claus delivered: Donald Trump for president.
If there’s anyone out there who still thinks the Donald Trump presidency won’t be so bad for separation of church and state, chew on this: Trump offered the job of Education Secretary to Jerry Falwell Jr.
That’s right: Trump was prepared to turn the U.S. Department of Education over to a biblical literalist who would have been absolutely unqualified for the job.