Christian Leaders React to Trump Video Scandal

By Dustin Siggins Published on October 8, 2016

Donald Trump’s newest scandal is causing some top Republicans to withdraw endorsements and call for him to step down as the party’s presidential nominee. The Republican National Committee appears to be stopping some of its election efforts on behalf of Trump, and both Trump’s wife and running mate have criticized comments made a decade ago by Trump about how he tried to have sex with a married woman, and how his fame allowed him to do largely whatever he wanted with and to women.

Others are noting that liberal and Democratic critics of Trump may not have a moral or legal leg to stand on:

So what are Christian leaders – many of whom backed Trump enthusiastically while others more grudgingly – saying? Below are more than a dozen statements, with credit to Sarah Bailey at The Washington Post for collating many of the Tweets, as well as other statements.

From Bailey:

Ralph Reed, a conservative Christian activist and the head of Trump’s religious advisory board, said that as the father of two daughters, he was disappointed by the “inappropriate” comments.

“But people of faith are voting on issues like who will protect unborn life, defend religious freedom, grow the economy, appoint conservative judges and oppose the Iran nuclear deal,” he said in an email.

He contrasted Trump with Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton, saying that her “corrupt use of her office to raise funds from foreign governments and corporations and her reckless and irresponsible handling of classified material on her home-brewed email server, endangering US national security, that will drive the evangelical vote.”

“I think a 10-year-old tape of a private conversation with a TV talk show host ranks pretty low on their hierarchy of their concerns,” he said.

Franklin Graham: 

The crude comments made by Donald J. Trump more than 11 years ago cannot be defended. But the godless progressive agenda of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton likewise cannot be defended. I am not endorsing any candidates in this election. I have said it throughout this presidential campaign, and I will say it again — both candidates are flawed. The only hope for the United States is God. Our nation’s many sins have permeated our society, leading us to where we are today. But as Christians we can’t back down from our responsibility to remain engaged in the politics of our nation. On November 8th we will all have a choice to make. The two candidates have very different visions for the future of America. The most important issue of this election is the Supreme Court. That impacts everything. There’s no question, Trump and Clinton scandals might be news for the moment, but who they appoint to the Supreme Court will remake the fabric of our society for our children and our grandchildren, for generations to come.

Tony Perkins:

“As a husband and father of three daughters, I find this behavior deeply offensive and degrading. As I have made clear, my support for Donald Trump in the general election was never based upon shared values rather it was built upon shared concerns. These concerns include the damage the Supreme Court would continue to do to this country through the appointment of activist justices, concerns over the security of our nation because of our government’s refusal to confront the growing threat of Islamic terrorism, and concerns over the prospects of continued attacks by our own government upon religious freedom.”

“At this point in the political process, because of our lack of engagement and involvement as Christians, not just in this election but in the government and culture as a whole, we are left with a choice of voting for the one who will do the least damage to our freedoms.”

“This is far from an ideal situation, but it is the reality in which we find ourselves and as difficult as it is, I refuse to find sanctuary on the sidelines and allow the country and culture to deteriorate even further by continuing the policies of the last 8 years,” concluded Perkins.


Via Reuters:

He said Clinton has peccadilloes of her own, most notably marital woes with her husband, former President Bill Clinton.

“So yes, I will vote for Donald Trump. I’m not excusing his behavior at all. It’s disgusting,” he said.


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  • Elaine

    Agree Albert Mohler. Humiliating to hear “evangelicals” defend the indefensible …….character and morals don’t matter. Sickening. Lord help us.

  • Hmmm…

    This routine is not current and does not reflect the current practice of Mr. Trump from my understanding. He is almost 24 hours, 6 days a week traveling to and holding rallies around the country these days. He is growing and changing as he said from the people he has met. I think God is working in this man. He does represent the reprieve from what looked like the inevitable move into more secularized and anti-Christian society we will have to actively resist. I think God is working in him, for us, through him and if we hang on to trusting God to work things out and not panic, he will be better able to do so so.

  • Chip Crawford

    That was then; this is now.

  • Orwell’s Oracle

    “Christian leaders” ??? What a joke. Each one willing to accept from Trump what they would never accept from a Democrat…especially one named Clinton. These are “leaders” who demonstrate with every tweet and quote that they are very much both in the world and of the world. Christian principle applies only to your political adversaries. Not wishing to pick at a 500 year old scab, but has anyone else noted that all the “Christian Leaders” happen to be Evangelicals & Protestants? Trump is a lying, cheating megalomaniac with no attachment to any principles, either Christian or conservative. Those who fail to grasp this reality should be ashamed…and be shamed. They are no better than the sad excuse for a candidate with whom they have cast their lot. Shame!

    • Hmmm…

      We know he is not a Christian, but is being influenced by his contact with them. He and the Republican platform stand for things Christians must have like pro life, religious liberty and a number of others. The contrast with the Dem candidate and platform is stark. I really don’t know anyone who is positively impressed with him except his rally folks, who seem to thrive on the personal touch and caring about immigration moms and such. Trump is attaching more to principle than he would without spending time with those strong black churches and their leaders plus his council. Perfect people and situations are not typical. Many situations are in progress and people experiencing change through new contacts.

  • Jim Walker

    To those who have no sin cast the first stone.
    His remarks are indeed crude, but it’s 11 years ago. If the recording was last week, I’d say this man is a phoney.
    Give him a chance.

    • john appleseed

      Don’t be silly. No one is trying to throw rocks at him until he’s dead.
      *facepalm* So much of this generation has lost the ability to think.
      If Jesus was talking about criticism in that “cast the first stone” verse (clearly he wasn’t), then why did Jesus (as well as his disciples) do so much criticizing?

      • Chip Crawford

        Actually, they didn’t. You really need a fact checker. I’ve noticed that before about you.

  • Charles Burge

    I’m a little confused why this is a big deal right now. It’s been known for a long time that Donald Trump is a lech. He’s even made lewd comments about his own daughter in the past. Surely the people who threw their lot in with him must have known something like this was coming.

  • Sandra Alexander

    Oscar Schindler, in Schindler’s List, was not shown to be a man of good character…and yet he was used mightily to save many Jews……

  • Do you think we will have religious freedom without God? Do you think Jesus wants us to vote for this man? Do you think He’s going to bless us for abandoning our virtue to vote for Trump in the hope he will preserve our religious freedom?

    God may test our faith, but the way out of this trial is not to forsake everything Christ and the Apostles taught us in the New Testament. Neither does God want us to ignore everything He said about righteous leaders in the Old Testament.

    Just ask yourself: does God condone our disregard for His teaching and replacing it with the Gospel of Trump in the faith that this Barabbas will save us from our sin and liberate us from our (impending) bondage?

    When evangelicals chant Trump all they are doing is joining the chorus during the Passion screaming that they want Barabbas over Christ. God gives people what they ask for, so be careful who you are putting your faith in and asking God to give you.

    • TJL

      Of course, Jesus Christ would not encourage sin or be complicit in sin, so He would never condone a vote for Clinton or Trump… which is the same thing.
      There have been good options all along, and there still are.
      But, for some reason, most people feel it necessary to only play the game given them by the political machines.
      And, our wonderful Conservative friends with public platforms refuse to mention the viable good options.
      Instead, we are constantly told, “there are no viable options in this election”.
      How ignorant?!
      Tom Hoefling is a clean candidate that so-called Conservatives have ignored for the past two elections.
      Tom Hoefling is still available and can be easily looked up on the internet as one of the candidates running for office.
      Evan McMullin, a newcomer to the race, is also being ignored by our wonderful Conservative mouth pieces.
      If these so-called Conservatives would start talking about good candidates, we just might get some where.
      Instead, they fall into the same trap every election cycle.
      They popularize the wicked, and refuse to promote the good.
      Always trying to find a lessor of two evils instead of focusing on the good and avoiding the evil completely.
      They think they are so clever. Jesus doesn’t think they are. A sellout goes to Hell.
      Yes. They should mention the errors in the wicked, but the majority of their time should be on promoting who IS electable, not who ISN’T.
      And, not saying there aren’t viable candidates simply because the good ones aren’t popular, yet.
      If they’d bother to mention the good ones half as much as they mention the bad ones they would become popular.
      This won’t be the last election.
      We need more people to snap out of the trance that the political machines have most people in, and start getting the unpopular candidates recognized, for this election and for the future elections.

  • john appleseed

    For you guys who actually believe Trump would appoint conservative justices to the Supreme Court, rather than people like his radically pro-partial-birth-abortion sister whom Trump praised less than a year ago as being a “phenomenal” candidate for the Court, try this:
    Let’s say Trump wins.
    Then Trump continues to be the most ego-maniacal, hypocritical, grudge-bearing, left-leaning, gaffe-spewing, profanity-hurling, indecisive, ignorant, tantrum-prone crybaby in public life.
    The weary public will punish him in 2018 by sending a super-majority of Democrats to the House & the Senate (remember how the voters punished Bill Clinton in a similar way?).
    How many conservative Supreme Court justices will he be able to appoint with a Democrat-dominated Congress?
    And when the weary public punishes the GOP for giving us Trump in 2020, we’ll have a Democrat in the White House anyway, as well as a Democrat-controlled Congress.
    Write-in a decent person on your ballot who probably can’t win, allow Hillary to triumph, & then she will be the one to face a hostile Congress from 2018-2020.
    Then the GOP brand can start to recover from Trumpism, & we might get someone good next time.
    If Trump wins, he will shape the GOP for a generation.
    God help us.

    • Chip Crawford

      Ain’t it great! I bet it encourages you! Since God is willing to keep working with the likes of him, that means there’s still hope for you!!

    • TJL

      There have been other good options, beyond what the political machines have provided, but, people are so caught up in the game that they won’t look them up and promote them.
      Tom Hoefling has been available all along and was available during the last election. Not one Conservative news source mentioned his availability.
      Evan McMullin, a newer arrival, is ignored, as well.
      Gee, we have no options! NOT!
      This is supposed to be the information age, but people don’t even take a few seconds to look up who all is running for offices.
      They just stay focused on the game and try to be clever about voting for the most likely winner who serves their purposes in word, without thinking about their deeds.
      If conservatives would stop falling for the same game every election cycle we would have a different outcome.
      This election will not be the end of the world, no matter which evil wins.
      We will likely have Clinton for president, that’s why Trump temporarily left the Democratic party to disrupt the GOP. He had to insure his investment.
      We need to vote for good people, whether it looks like they will win or not. Those numbers do matter, and our morality depends on it.
      Then, we need to start early, and prepare good options for 2020.
      By the way, I’ve been writing this same info in comments for this entire campaign. Nothing has changed.
      I’ve been called every dirty name in the book for stating the truth and for stating that Clinton will likely make it to the General, and, she will likely win because Trump did his job, and, people are gullible enough to play the game.

  • You know, I spent 20 years as a child, 20 years as an avowed atheist so hateful and evil that even those who incessantly prayed for the salvation of my soul had ZERO courage to witness to me (that’s how bad I was, not them), and, now, nearly 20 years as a Christian. If I was to run for public office the dump trucks of dirt would never stop coming. That, though, is not who I am today. Today, purely by God’s grace, I’ve written over 1,500 hymns of the faith. For some evidence of my claims here, Google “Mercy, Grace, and Truth-Expanded Edition”. As to the one who so incessantly and insistently battered the doors of Heaven into powder and pulp for the sake of my soul, I wish she could see what her prayers have wrought, and I wish I could see her again before we meet in Heaven.

    It is said that, in the last year or two, Donald Trump prayed to receive Christ as his Savior. If he is, indeed a genuine Christian now, then he is still in diapers (I think the British call them nappies).

    Take your vitriol and aim it at your own past and what you used to be. If you are honest with yourself there will be plenty of target there for you to cover, and by the time you’re done you will be too worn out to care about what some 2 year old Christian did 9 years BEFORE he was saved.

    In any case, enough with this holier than thou hypocrisy, as though you have never done anything wrong. Take a lesson from the story of the woman caught in adultery: Jesus Christ will deal with Donald as He dealt with her. Her accusers at least had the wisdom to drop their stones and leave her alone.

    What about you?

  • jeremy

    I’m voting for a politician to fill the white house, not for a theology. America is a nation of kings. Every four years, the royalty chooses a human being to advance the causes it considers just. There is no king, be his cause ever so just, who can carry it out with unspotted soldiers.

    There is a degree of practicality mixed in with casting a vote. Based on the choices presented, the times, and choice of a conscience, a vote strikes the difference between practicality and principle. It’s not always easy.

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