Before his death, Jerry Falwell was interviewed by CNN’s Christiane Amanpour for her series “God’s Warrirors” and stated that, in the next election, national security was more important than social issues, attacked the Democrats, and stood by his post-9/11 comments blaming “the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians … the ACLU, People For the American Way” for the attacks.
AMANPOUR: In other words, all sorts of compromise is possible in a presidential season when none among the current field of Republican candidates has excited the conservative Christian base of the party. Falwell even told me the 2008 Republican presidential nominee could meet quite a different standard than usual. (on camera): You basically said that for you, in this next election, correct me if I’m wrong… FALWELL: It’s security. AMANPOUR: It’s security…
FALWELL: Oh, yes.
AMANPOUR: …rather than the social issues that you care so deeply about.
FALWELL: Well, certainly, we’d love to get, in one package, a man, a woman, who is strong on security and right on the social issues. We’ve got to find the person closest to where we are.
SEN. HILLARY RODHAM CLINTON (D), NEW YORK: I believe those prayers. Keep them coming.
AMANPOUR: He dismissed Democrats like Senators Clinton and Obama.
FALWELL: That’s like the story, Chelsea Clinton interviewing some Marines returning from Iraq. And she asked one of them the question — what do you fear most? And he, after a thought, said, “Osama, Obama and your mama.” Well, I’m not saying that really happened, but that’s how I feel.
AMANPOUR (on camera): That’s how you feel?
FALWELL: That’s right.
AMANPOUR (voice-over): And Falwell continued to connect liberal beliefs to Islamic terrorism, such as blaming the attacks of September 11th on the prevalence of abortion in America. (on camera): You know, you caused a huge amount of controversy after 9/11 when you basically said that the Lord was removing his protection from America.
FALWELL: I still believe that. I believe that a country that is…
AMANPOUR: And that America probably deserved it.
FALWELL: Here’s what I said, what — no. I said that the people we have no are responsible must take the blame for it.
AMANPOUR: You did…
FALWELL: We were killing (INAUDIBLE)…
AMANPOUR: …but you went on to say what I’ve just said.
FALWELL: We’re killing a million babies a year in this country by abortion. But I was saying then and I’m saying now, that if we, in fact, change all the rules on which this Judeo-Christian nation was built, we cannot expect the Lord to put his shield of protection around us as he has in the past.
AMANPOUR: So you still stand by that?
FALWELL: I stand right by that.