Pick out the Trump quote about Billy Graham

Trump twitter

Chris Cillizza posted this:

Here are five from well-known Republican politicians. See if you can pick out the one from President Donald Trump:

1. “Dr. Graham was a counselor to presidents, a pastor to the masses, and most of all — a loving, caring, husband, father, and grandfather. May he Rest In Peace.”

2. “We send our deepest condolences to the Graham family. Billy Graham’s ministry for the gospel of Jesus Christ and his matchless voice changed the lives of millions. We mourn his passing but I know with absolute certainty that today he heard those words, ‘Well done, good and faithful servant.’ Thank you Billy Graham. God bless you.”

3. “I think Billy touched the hearts of not only Christians, but people of all faiths, because he was such a good man. I was privileged to have him as a personal friend.”

4. “The GREAT Billy Graham is dead. There was nobody like him! He will be missed by Christians and all religions. A very special man.”

5. “Billy Graham lifted eyes toward heaven and instilled heaven’s values in hearts. The world mourns this man of character, this man of God.”

Not much of a challenge, is it? You just pick the one that reads like it came from a child who’s trying to sound grownup but not succeeding. Or perhaps from someone whose first language is not English, and who knows next to nothing about religion or Western culture in general.

The others, the ones that sound like they came from articulate grownups, are from Lindsey Graham, Mike Pence, former George H.W. Bush and Mitt Romney.

28 thoughts on “Pick out the Trump quote about Billy Graham

  1. Brad Warthen Post author

    And yeah, I want to say something more substantive about the passing of Graham, but it might be later today. Here was my first reaction this morning:

  2. Claus2

    Anyone else remember as a kid when his specials would come on television? It was worse than when the President would be on.

          1. Barry

            Me too. Love my church. Grew up going, went through college and never stopped.

            My kids love church. My teens ask to go even when I don’t feel well.

  3. Doug Ross

    Are you 100% certain those other quotes came directly from the person or were they written by a staffer? Bush’s wasn’t very much different from Trump;s. Which isn’t surprising… He was known for receiving what he called a “gentleman’s C” at Yale.

    It’s too bad you can’t find anything else to focus on except Trump. Life is passing you by.

  4. Barry

    I picked out Pence’s immedtaley

    Trump’s was as easy as it gets.. He’s mentally challenged (in a good way)

    1. Brad Warthen Post author

      Much worse? You mean he’s a BIGGER supporter of the Vietnam War?

      Sorry, couldn’t resist. It’s the editor in me.

      No, Franklin Graham is definitely not the man his father was. I can’t see Billy propping up Trump…

    2. Barry

      A lot of people supported the Vietnam war. A lot of people didn’t.
      My dad was a supporter of the war effort. His best friend wasn’t.
      Such is America.

  5. Bart

    Toward the end of his life, Billy Graham said he regretted getting involved in politics in any manner. One day I plan to visit the Billy Graham Center in Charlotte just as I want to visit The Wall and Holocaust Museum in DC. Billy Graham had his detractors but his supporters outnumbered them by a margin anyone would respect. I watched many of his sermons and had the pleasure of listening to one of his teachers and mentors tell us about him when his former teacher was a visiting minister at one of our revivals.

    When I open the morning newspaper, one of the first things I find is his daily message. It is a great start to my day.

  6. Mark Stewart

    And yet… he was an antisemite. Far better than his son, true, and yet still like the burning of the sugar cane crop to me.

      1. Mark Stewart

        Windows into the heart. I will give you Graham was a smooth operator. I just don’t believe all the sanctimony.

        I don’t have a high opinion of evangelicalism – in any religion. It’s a holier than thou mentality at its core. While there are universal human truths – such as spirituality – religion is not one of them. The globe is covered in different faiths, approaches, outlooks, religious frameworks, etc. It would seem God intended that plethora. I find it highly credible that he believed his own hype, and therefore viewed others as lesser – deep in his own head. Certainly that is apparent in the echoes of Billy in his son Franklin.

        1. Bart

          It is obvious you know nothing about Billy Graham. He was one of the most self-depreciating individuals to ever stand behind the pulpit. Yes, he had flaws just like any other human being but he was not above changing his mind on positions he once held. He expressed his regret for ever entering the world of politics.

          He never held a “holier than thou” attitude nor was he sanctimonious. I never worship an individual no matter what he or she does but I do hold some in high regard for the body of work they have done. Overall Billy Graham’s body of work is worthy of praise even if he had faults and foibles all humans have. And his failures did appear in the form of rebellion in his sons Franklin and Ted. Read the article about him in the WaPo if you are looking for vindication for your views about Graham, it should be very satisfying.

          Maybe a good idea to do some research on Billy Graham before making broad brush statements about him.

          1. Mark Stewart

            I’m sorry, Bart, but everything about Billy Graham was political. He sought the limelight seeking to tie a new form of American patriotism to a broad evangelicalism – and didn’t care much for civil rights on the whole. It was the mass that mattered to him, not the minorities outside that swayable belt.

            1. Bart

              We will agree to disagree and no need to say “I’m sorry” if that is your opinion. Stand by it and I will stand by mine and do so with respect.

            2. Barry

              Billy wasn’t that political. He had opinions but he did MUCH better than most of putting those opinions aside and creating friendships with people on all sides of issues.

              His wife has said that he fought getting political at times.

              As powerful as he once was, if he had wanted to get political and truly influence political opinions, he could have easily done so and millions would have followed along. He didn’t.

              And Graham would readily agree with anyone that he had huge personal failings as a human being. He said that all the time.

  7. Bart

    From USA Today:

    12. To eliminate even the suspicion of infidelity, Graham vowed never to meet, travel or eat alone with any woman other than his wife.

    “…..and didn’t care much for civil rights on the whole.” Mark Stewart
    13. During the Civil Rights era, Graham integrated his revival meetings, inviting both blacks and whites to attend. He said, “Christianity is not a white man’s religion, and don’t let anybody ever tell you that it’s white or black. Christ belongs to all people. He belongs to the whole world.”

    14. He became a target of the Ku Klux Klan in the 1960s after planning an integrated crusade in Birmingham, Ala., in the aftermath of a church bombing that killed several black children. “The Ku Klux Klan went around and knocked out our signs,” Billy Graham recalled. “The state police had to send policemen with us wherever we went — before my car and after my car. The police were also in the rooms around me because they were afraid we would get shot.”

    In another article in USA Today, his nephew confirmed what all of us who grew up listening to and watching his crusades on television Billy Graham knew about the man. He was asked several times to run for Senator from North Carolina and even encouraged to run for POTUS. His reply was always the same, That’s not what the Lord called me to do.’ He did walk with presidents because he was ‘asked’ to come to the White House and politicians wanted to be associated with him, not the other way around.

    He never wanted the attention to be about him, he wanted it to be about his message about salvation and Christ. Yes, it is very possible that at times the worldwide fame could have been a source of momentary pride but the Billy Graham I knew through his ministry would have recognized it immediately, repented and asked for forgiveness.

    Billy Graham doesn’t need me or anyone else to defend him, his life and message is more than enough for me and millions of others who feel the same way. My life is richer because I did sit and watch or listen to his sermons and crusades.

  8. Brad Warthen Post author

    Going back to this: “I don’t have a high opinion of evangelicalism…”

    I’m really ambivalent about it. On the one hand, one of the reasons I like being Catholic is that we don’t do that. Especially in the South, we sort of keep to ourselves. If someone (like me) wants to convert to Catholicism, there’s a mechanism for it — it takes about a year — but Catholics aren’t out buttonholing strangers on the street or anything.

    (Speaking of being a Catholic in the South…. My wife tells me that my father-in-law, as one of the few Catholics in the communities where she grew up in Alabama and Tennessee, would answer the usual evangelical query of “Do you have a home church?” by saying, “I’m Roman Catholic.” Not just “Catholic,” but “Roman” — just to take them aback even more…)

    Then, on the other hand… if you’re enthusiastic about your faith, aren’t you being rather greedy to hoard it to yourself? If you’re sincere about it, why wouldn’t you want to share it with everybody you meet? “Evangelize” means to share the Good News. Isn’t it natural, and admirable, to want to do that?

    So I’m of two minds on the subject…

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