“You know what? Trump is a test whether you’re even saved. Only saved people can love Trump.”
– TV evangelist Jim Bakker, the “Jim Bakker Show”
Bakker’s comment actually elicited a few laughs from the show’s studio audience. Donald Trump – who has ingratiated himself with far-right Christians and somehow found Jesus squatting in the basement of his Manhattan skyscraper – once declared that he’d never asked God for forgiveness. And, when you have that much money, who needs God?!
Those of us in the U.S. of a “Certain Age” vividly recall the Jim Bakker of the 1980s; the self-proclaimed preacher who, along with his perky makeup-clad wife, Tammy Fay, spent more time promoting his godly hotline seeking donations than actually preaching the word of God – whatever that’s supposed to mean. His and other evangelical scandals of the period were the worst of daytime dramas (the fluff formerly known as “soap operas”), but provided delicious fodder for the tabloid press and comedians.