During the 2018 message, the American people sent an unmistakable message–after two years of one-party Republican government, they wanted Donald Trump held to account. The Democratic majority in the House heard that message loud and clear. That’s why they have pushed for the full details of Robert Mueller’s investigation to be released.
Contrary to what Trump and his acolytes would have you believe, this report was far from, in Trump’s words, a “complete and total exoneration.” Mueller explicitly stated that while he was unable to conclude Trump obstructed justice, he could not exonerate him either. The House committees investigating Trump are thus more than justified in seeking the underlying evidence that suggested there may have been obstruction.
The House isn’t just seeking answers about Russia. For instance, House Intelligence Committee chairman Adam Schiff is leading a wide-ranging investigation into the prospect that Trump’s checkbook is corruptly influencing his actions as president. Judiciary Committee chairman Jerry Nadler is doing a deep dive into potential corruption and obstruction of justice by Trump and his acolytes.
But to hear a leading charismatic Christian businessman talk, this drive to hold Trump to account isn’t just wrong. As he sees it, it’s demonic.
Ron Allen is an accountant who has also founded and led a number of ministries, such as Corporate Prayer Resources, an outreach to intercessors. He is also a frequent columnist at Charisma magazine, the leading charismatic/Pentecostal-oriented magazine in the nation. On Monday, he penned an op-ed in which he echoed what has become the standard party line in Trumpland. That is, Trump has been “vindicated” of potential collusion with Russia after being framed up by “a cabal of government officials.” And yet, the Democrats are still out to “bring down his presidency.”
From where Allen is sitting, though, this continued push against Trump is being driven by an “inquisition spirit”–the same spirit that has supposedly resulted in the federal government “persecuting people for their political and religious views.” The message here is obvious–the same people who drove the investigation into Trump are the same people ganging up on evangelicals who just want to practice their faith.
It’s rather ironic that Allen is railing about Trump being attacked by an “inquisition spirit.” After all, the religious right has been leading an inquisition of its own over the last three or four decades. In many of the more hidebound elements of the evangelical/fundamentalist/charismatic world, supporting a Democrat puts your salvation at risk, and even mildly liberal sympathies are a sign that you don’t have a proper walk with God.
This inquisition has ramped up to another level in the Trump era. Almost from the moment Trump locked up the Republican nomination, the nation’s so-called moral guardians have told us that the opposition to Trump is demonically driven, that daring to oppose Trump risks letting the devil himself into your house, and that those who oppose Trump are children of the devil. So Allen’s acolytes are using language like this, and he’s accusing Democrats of being driven by an “inquisition spirit”? Pot, meet kettle.
This article from Allen is ironic on another count. It comes just 24 hours acting White House chief of staff Mick Mulvaney told the nation that even if his boss’ campaign acted unethically, it doesn’t matter. Watch here, courtesy KTVQ in Billings, Montana.
Last week, Schiff turned heads when he denounced the Trump campaign for engaging in “unethical” and “unpatriotic” behavior even if it may not have crossed the line into criminal conduct. In response, Mulvaney told CNN’s Jake Tapper that “the issue is not whether it’s ethical,” and it’s not Congress’ job to pass judgment on whether Trump acted unethically.
Wait a minute. So even if a presidential campaign engaged in behavior that breached every standard of ethics and morality that we expect from those working to get someone in the White House, Congress doesn’t have a right to hold Trump to account for it? And even if a presidential campaign crossed ethical bright lines even if it didn’t cross criminal ones, Congress has no business holding Trump to account for it? It sure sounds like that’s what Mulvaney is saying. And we can only conclude that this is the Trump White House’s official position on the matter.
Under the watch of founder and publisher Steve Strang, Charisma has become a water-carrier for the religious right and for Trump. But just 24 hours after Trump effectively told the nation that we shouldn’t care if his campaign acted unethically, a Charisma column effectively suggests holding Trump to account for doing so is demonic. Who are Allen and Strang worshiping here–Jesus, or Trump?
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