Politics

GOP congressman calls on Christian leaders to repent for lying to congregations about Trump

JANUARY 29, 2016: U.S. Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois speaks at a political rally.
JANUARY 29, 2016: U.S. Representative Adam Kinzinger of Illinois speaks at a political rally.Photo: Shutterstock

Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-IL) has been one of President Donald Trump’s most outspoken critics from inside the GOP and he has consistently pushed back against the president’s unfounded claims of voter fraud. Kinzinger was the only Republican to vote in favor of calling on Vice President Mike Pence to invoke the 25th Amendment to remove Trump and one of ten to vote in favor of impeachment.

Now the member of Congress is calling on evangelical Christian leaders to account for their role in stirring Trump’s insurrection. And he’s naming names.

Related: Evangelical leader Franklin Graham praises Trump attack on protestors & chastises Christians instead

“I believe there’s a huge burden now on pastors and clergy who openly spread the conspiracies of a stolen election, like @robertjeffress @BeholdIsrael @Franklin_Graham among many others, to admit their mistakes and lead their flocks out of darkness to truth,” Kinzinger tweeted, referencing South Baptist Pastor Robert Jeffress, founder of Behold Israel Amir Tsarfati and evangelical leader Franklin Graham.

All three have been staunch Trump supporters. Both Graham and Jeffress are vociferously anti-LGBTQ and regularly blame the queer community for all of life’s ills.

While Jeffress has prostrated himself before Trump throughout the administration, he did not promote the president’s conspiracy theory that he actually won the election – and he quickly shot back to demand an apology.

“Adam, you need to get your facts straight,” Jeffress tweeted in response. “I’ve never once claimed the election was ‘stolen.’ If anyone needs to ‘admit their mistake,’ it’s YOU. Will be awaiting your apology.”

“You know sir?” Kinzinger responded, “You are absolutely correct. You did act honorably, and while my point remains about the Church and the need for pastors to lead, you did not press those stolen election conspiracies. I am sorry for including you in that.”

He deleted the original tweet, but followed up with another.

“I believe there is a huge burden now on Christian leaders, especially those who entertained the conspiracies, to lead the flock back to truth,” he sent.

As recently as last month, Graham was still claiming it was only a “potential” that Biden had won and that the election “isn’t finalized yet.” It had been.

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