David French’s Hit-Piece on Franklin Graham & Trump

David French’s Hit-Piece on Franklin Graham & Trump April 28, 2019
 
I don’t see that French succeeds in making his point of supposed rank hypocrisy on Graham’s part. Graham is not condoning sin. He wrote about the Stormy Daniels thing, as reported by an NBC article:
President Trump I don’t think has admitted to having an affair with this person, and so this is just a news story, and I don’t even know if it’s accurate.
That’s worlds apart from saying, “yes, this report is true, and I don’t care whether he had an affair. It’s not wrong, and it’s irrelevant.” Instead, in the same article, Graham stated:
I believe at 70 years of age the president is a much different person today than he was four years ago, five years ago, 10 years ago. He is not President Perfect.
We certainly don’t hold him up as the pastor of this nation and he is not, but I appreciate the fact that the president does have a concern for Christian values, he does have a concern to protect Christians whether it’s here at home or around the world and I appreciate the fact that he protects religious liberty and freedom.
Trump possibly could have changed. Anything’s possible. This is what the Never Rational Never Trumpers (in their relentless derision and cynicism) won’t allow as a possibility. But Christians are to believe the best of people, not the worst.
 
In another interview from November 2018, Graham reiterated:
I never said he was the best example of the Christian faith. He defends the faith. And I appreciate that very much. Trump has admitted his faults and has apologised to his wife and his daughter for things he has done and said. And he has to stand before God for those things. I believe that he’s a changed person and I’ve never seen anybody get attacked like he gets attacked. These alleged affairs, they’re alleged with Trump, didn’t happen while he was in office.
The comparison (in this charge of hypocrisy and double standards) is to President Bill Clinton, with his proven, admitted affair with an intern while in office, and eleven broken laws and loss of his law license and impeachment, and an incident before Trump took office that has not been proven as fact. Likewise, with Pete Buttigieg, his active homosexuality is readily admitted; he’s proud of it. Last I checked, homosexual sex is a mortal sin. Graham is quite right to note the sinfulness of that, and he has a lot of guts in today’s crazy moral climate to do so. Kudos. Bravo.
 
I don’t see the hypocrisy or inconsistency. He’s not defending sin. He is questioning whether some of the charges against Trump are true. He’s not pretending that Trump is perfect and without fault. No one I know in conservative and Christian circles has ever done that, even though certain loudmouthed folks like Pseudo-Jeremiah II constantly claim (lying) that this is what we do and have been doing.
 
He has been divorced twice and has been in three ostensible marriages. Yep. Reagan was divorced as well and was quite the ladies’ man in Hollywood. I don’t see the Never Trumpers arguing that Christians were rank hypocrites en masse for voting for Reagan because he was divorced: or for McCain in 2008 (also a divorced man). For some reason, the ire there is directed at Trump and his voters only. Double standards and hypocrisy? There are some.
 
We want to make the Playboy interview an issue? That was in 1990 when Trump was an avowed Democrat and extreme pro-abort. Now he is neither. Or was it insincere change again? Reagan changed on both those scores. Reagan had signed a pro-abortion bill in California in 1967 that caused over 200,000 abortions before Roe. Trump never did that.
 
How quickly we forget that President Carter did a Playboy interview in 1976 while he was a candidate. He was the one who claimed to be a born-again Christian. So why isn’t there urinating and moaning about that? Instead we hear about Trump’s interview only.
 
What we do know for sure is that David French is a Never Rational Never Trumper. He wants to casually toss out in his hit-piece that Trump is supposedly lying left and right. What about all the lies about Trump being a treasonous Russian agent: now thoroughly discredited by the Mueller Report? But we see French in a May 2018 interview with F. Chuck Todd, bloviating:
There are an awful lot of people who are desperate, desperate to believe all of this is a bunch of non-sense. Look, I don’t know what’s true and what’s not. All of us have very partial information right now.
Here’s what I do know. Here’s what I do know. If the son of a presidential candidate gets a message from — that is purporting to say, or that actually says, I have information to share with you from the government of Russia about a plan to help Mr. Trump and to help facilitate his election, that it is not right to respond to that with, “I love it.”
 
If somebody does respond with “I love it,” what that indicates is at the very least they were enthusiastic about potentially colluding with the Russians. Enthusiastic about it. In the face of evidence like that among many other things we could go into, to then say all this is is a witch-hunt, all this is is non-sense I think strains credulity.
 
I’ll press the panic button on that after I see what Mueller’s case is. We don’t know what it is. Because I do think that if Mueller has an airtight case in the way some people speculate that he does. Again, I don’t know.
But if he does have an airtight case, that is going to blow up so many narratives and discredit so many people that what you are going to be left with, I would surmise — maybe I’m wildly optimistic, is just tiny, tiny hardcore few, kind of like what Nixon was left with at the end of his time. Again that’s all rampant speculation because we just don’t know.
Well, now we do know . . .

I agree that a President’s moral character is a highly relevant issue. So does Franklin Graham. But we also were forced to make a choice between Trump, with all his faults, including likely much sexual sin, and the radical pro-abort with a long string of dubious legal activities, Hillary Clinton. That choice was very clear for any Christian voter (I submit). Personally, I never ever vote for childkillers, if there is a pro-life choice on the ballot. It’s a dealbreaker, in the way that being a Nazi or KKK member also would be. On the other hand, votes do not suggest or imply absolute approval of everything in a candidate’s policies or life. Anyone who thinks they do is an unthinking idiot.

Lastly, one can take different views as to how much to probe a President’s personal life. In JFK’s and LBJ’s times (no saints: either of them) it simply wasn’t done at all.  Democrats are the ones who blasted into public consciousness the notion (during the Clinton Monica Lewinsky fiasco) that one’s (even a President’s) private sexuality was absolutely irrelevant. And so the public largely now applies that empty-headed libertarian approach to President Trump. If Clinton’s sexual sins were irrelevant, so are Trump’s, whatever they may be (so they reason). I do not think they are irrelevant, in either case. But that is the societal norm the Democrats blessed us with. You make the bed you lie in . . .

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Photo credit: Advertisement for the American drama film Hypocrisy (1916) with Virginia Pearson, on page 18 of the June 2, 1916 Variety. [public domain / Wikimedia Commons]
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