Trump Blames Tony Perkins for Feeding ‘Two Corinthians’ Line to Him in Notes Given by Family Group President

Tony Perkins Credit Gage Skidmore
Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore

It now is apparent that Donald Trump was not citing his own notes during his recent visit to Liberty University, but rather was reading from cue notes given to him by Tony Perkins of Family Research Council, who suggested that he cite Scripture from 2 Corinthians to connect with the educational institution.

Some media outlets chuckled over Trump’s reference to “two Corinthians” rather than “second Corinthians” during his speech last Monday—an incident that others found to be minor and not necessary to nitpick.

“2 Corinthians 3:17, that’s the whole ballgame. Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty,” he stated to the thousands gathered during the Liberty University convocation. “And here, there is liberty.”

“Is that the one? Is that the one you like?” he then asks, sounding awkward. “I think that’s the one you like because I loved it, and it’s so representative of what’s taking place.”

However, in an interview last week with CNN, it revealed another issue—that the Family Research Council was feeding Trump on how to speak to evangelicals.

“Tony Perkins wrote that out for me. He actually wrote out 2; he wrote out the number 2 Corinthians,” Trump told reporter Don Lemon on Wednesday. “I took exactly what Tony said, and I said, ‘Well, Tony has to know better than anybody.'”

He added that his mother, who is from Scotland, would have said “two” instead of “second,” so the matter was a “very small deal.”

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Perkins acknowledged that he did provide help to Trump prior to his appearance.

“I’m guilty as charged. That’s exactly what I did. I sent him a couple of suggestions of some things he could talk about as a connection point,” he told CNN’s Erin Burnett, citing that one of the reasons he wanted to give Trump talking points was because the candidate was speaking at his alma mater. “I wrote the Scripture reference, which is 2 Corinthians 3:17, which is how it’s written.”

“It shows that he’s not familiar with Bible,” Perkins said. “Donald Trump’s a very interesting guy. There are some things about him that I find fascinating, that I like about him, as well as other evangelicals.”

He told the outlet that he hasn’t yet endorsed any particular candidate.

As previously reported, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell, Jr. praised Trump during his ten-minute introduction, suggesting that his life comports with Christianity because of his generosity.

“Matthew 7:16 tells us that ‘By your fruits you shall know them.’ Donald Trump’s life has borne fruit,” Falwell said. “Fruit that has provided jobs to multitudes of people, in addition to the many he has helped with his generosity.”

“In my opinion, Mr. Trump lives a life of loving and helping others as Jesus taught in the Great Commandment,” he declared.

Falwell made similar comments last Monday evening to Fox talk show host Sean Hannity.

“He may not be a theological expert and he might say two Corinthians instead of second Corinthians, but when you look at the fruits of his life and all the people he’s provided jobs, I think that’s the true test of somebody’s Christianity not whether or not they use the right theological terms,” he contended.

Others have stated that generosity alone is not the defining mark of a Christian as even the unconverted support humanitarianism and good deeds.

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  • BarkingDawg

    You still read the line out loud, trump.

  • squared@363

    Seriously Mr Fallwel, you really believe that the true measure of a mans walk with God is based on the wealth that he amasses? Is pride fullness not a sin.? Is berating your fellow man not a sin? iS his life that which Christ would exemplify? I am profoundly perplexed as to your motives in endorsing this man who feels that he need not repent to anyone.

    • Josey

      I am not perplexed as Trump has stated he will in his first day in office undo Obama’s executive action concerning gun rights which Falwell recently voiced his opinions about, that would be a good thing to have done, I agree but making evangelicals think that Trump is born again based on good works is not right and is error and self serving by Falwell. Trump has never claimed to be born again, he admits he knows little about the Bible or forgiveness given he can never recall asking God for forgiveness. Trump should be careful not to become someone he is not to get a vote, it will bite him in the rear in the end. It would be great if Trump actually did become born again for his souls sake and for eternity, would be for everyone, for Christ died for all of us but to fall into a claim of it w/out actually being a born again Christian is a lie.

      • squared@363

        If is only about gun rights then Cruz is the man. Having won the Heller case in the Supreme Court. Further, Cruz makes no apologies for his faith and how it influences his world views. Still perplexed…..Would hate to think that it’s about $$$

  • Wayne Snell

    If Trump truly was for Christian values and NOT just for Christian votes, he would not be pro-abotion. Trump is what is called in political circles as a RINO- a republican in name only. It was not long ago that he was a socialist leaning democrat. Granted people do change but this animal has only done one thing—changed his party name.

    • Jeff King

      Trump has stated repeatedly that he is anti-abortion.

      • Wayne Snell

        In his interview with Dana Bash (CNN) and many others, he states he is “pro-life” with exceptions. Look it up on You Tube. Those exceptions are rape, incest and “life of the mother.” These are exactly the reasons why abortion is ON DEMAND. That doesn’t make you pro-life, it makes you pro-abortion no matter what stories you say after it trying to make people think you are “pro-life”. Saying you are pro-life with these exceptions is like saying you are anti-genocide with the exceptions of the Nazis, Stalin, and Communist China.

      • Well back in the days when he was on that awful Howard Sterns’ radio program all the time, he frequently mentioned being in favor of abortion, and said [often] “Can you imagine how many children I would have now if it weren’t for abortion?”

        To this day, what few “friends” he actually ever had (such as that vile pig, Howard Stern) openly stated that he did not ever hold any of his “Candidate opinions” prior to running for office, and that he only started barking supposedly Christian-sounding things when he realized he’d get votes from it.

        It certainly worked… although six out of ten of his voters now state they wish they hadn’t been so easily duped into voting for him. Heck, it’s been two years… maybe you’ve wised up by now too?

  • gizmo23

    FRC uses Christians for political gain, nothing more.

  • Josey

    I agree Trump has done a lot of good things for people and so have others but I disagree that is the standard of who is a born again Christian or not. The bible clearly states what one must do to be born again. Yes there will be fruit of the Holy Spirit and the desire to do the will of God and obey Him in one’s life is that fruit that will follow, it’s not about me as much as it’s about Jesus. Paul said he died daily to his own desires as we also do when following Christ. There are always times when I want to do something that inside I get a check that says,”No, not the way to go, follow me.” I have to choose at that moment whether I’ll follow Christ’s way or my own way.
    Trump may even be a good president I don’t know but to sell him to evangelicals in error is not right, imo.

  • The Skeptical Chymist

    Trump is the kind of person who’ll take credit for positive things that other people do, and blames others for everything that is negative that he does. Blaming this on Tony Perkins is just an evasion of his responsibility for the incident – totally in character for him.