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Romney criticizes Jeffress as wrong man to give Jerusalem embassy prayer

16 May 2018

A leading Baptist minister who prayed at the opening of the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem is being attacked for past statements about other faiths.

Speaking on Fox News Radio, Jeffress said he had a specific plan for his prayer at the new embassy.

A Southern Baptist pastor who once called Mormonism "a cult, ' said Jews were 'going to hell, ' and that Catholicism was 'the genius of Satan" has been picked by the Trump administration to lead the prayer for the new United States embassy in Jerusalem.

Jeffress responded to Romney's criticisms.

He also once compared the Catholic Church to a cult which was the result of "genius of Satan".

Smith went on to relate those views: "Here's Robert Jeffress in his own words".

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"Islam is a false religion", Smith said, quoting Jeffress. "The fact that I, along with tens of millions of evangelical Christians around the world, continue to espouse that belief is neither bigoted nor newsworthy", he said.

This is not the first time that Jeffress has been called on to speak during a big occasion involving Trump or his administration.

Jeffress, who was involved with the 2016 Trump campaign, has been part of Trump's inner circle and addressed his family in private before the inauguration.

Mitt Romney called Dr. Robert Jeffress a "religious bigot" for believing that salvation is found through Jesus Christ.

Although Shah said he hasn't seen the remarks in question, he assured that such comments "aren't' remarks that the president agrees with".

Leeanne Naramore of Media Matters for America posted a video showing a compilation of some of Jeffress' most degrading comments.

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The only major Republican to complain was Mitt Romney. "US embassy opening in Jerusalem will be covered live on [Fox News] & [Fox Business]", he wrote, advertising his favoured TV network.

In his ceremonial prayer, Jeffress thanked God "for your providential and powerful protection of this nation from all who would seek to destroy her".

Both Jeffress and Hagee have been big Trump supporters, and they help cement the affection that conservative evnagelicals, the core of Trump's base, have for the president. But his unapologetic support of President Donald Trump over the past two years has brought him out of the shadows and into the light.

"One of the men who gave a prayer before the ceremony in Jerusalem today says he believes all Jews are going to hell", Smith, who serves as Fox News's chief news anchor, told his viewers.

"I have determined that it is time to officially recognize Jerusalem as the capital of Israel", Trump said.

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Romney criticizes Jeffress as wrong man to give Jerusalem embassy prayer