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Tony Perkins on Trump's Hillary Attack: Don't Use Faith as Weapon

Image: Tony Perkins on Trump's Hillary Attack: Don't Use Faith as Weapon
(AP Photo/Jose Luis Magana)

By    |   Tuesday, 21 Jun 2016 06:45 PM

Family Research Council President Tony Perkins disagreed Tuesday with Republican Donald Trump's questioning of Democrat Hillary Clinton's faith, but he said Trump made a move toward evangelicals nonetheless.

"I don't think faith should be used as a weapon," Perkins said when questioned about Trump's statements on MSNBC's "MTP Daily."

"We don't know anything about Hillary in terms of religion," Trump told a group of evangelical leaders in New York earlier Tuesday. "Now, she's been in the public eye for years and years, and yet there's nothing out there. There's like nothing out there."

"I don't agree with those statements," Perkins said when asked about Trump's comments on Clinton and during the primaries when he questioned the faith of rivals Ben Carson and Sen. Ted Cruz as well as 2012 nominee and Trump critic, Mitt Romney.

"I think stating where one stands within their relationship with God and how important their Christian faith, in this case, is, and how they come to conclusions, decisions, guidance is important to know," Perkins said. "Attacking another candidate's faith, to me, is not positive, and I think to other evangelicals it's not either."

Most Americans want a leader who recognizes God and prays, Perkins said, adding that the election is not about scaring evangelicals to the polls to vote by speculating what Hillary Clinton might to do the country.

That's one reason a lot of Trump endorsements did not follow the meeting, he said. "It was simply the beginning of a conversation."

Perkins noted that he has yet to endorse anyone in the general election, but he did support Texas Sen. Ted Cruz in the primaries because he knew Cruz's "faith construct was an evangelical, solid Christian worldview."

As for Trump's?

"I'm left with two options," Trump and Clinton, he said, adding that evangelicals have been attacked by the policies of the Barack Obama administration, and that has hindered their ability to live their lives according to their faith.


While Trump may not share the same theological views as evangelicals, "he said I understand the importance of religious freedom, and I'll defend your right to live according to your faith," Perkins said. "That was a very significant and important message to evangelicals."

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Family Research Council President Tony Perkins disagreed Tuesday with Republican Donald Trump's questioning of Democrat Hillary Clinton's faith, but he said Trump made a move toward evangelicals nonetheless.
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Tuesday, 21 Jun 2016 06:45 PM
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