IFAS | Freedom Writer | January/February 1999 | robertson.html

Robertson under fire on impeachment issue

Virginia Beach, Virginia After Pat Robertson said on his "700 Club" (January 20, 1999) that President Bill Clinton had won "from a public relations standpoint" and "they might as well dismiss" the trial, conservatives attacked him for his statements.

"If Pat Robertson said, in fact, it's time for Republicans to give up - and give in - to Clinton, my membership in the Christian Coalition is over," said one woman, Hazel Staloff, of Brooklyn.

Idaho Congresswoman Helen Chenoweth said, "I was surprised. We wouldn't have even fought the War of Independence if we had taken a poll."

Robertson defended himself saying, "The outcome seems at this point settled, but I wasn't saying I favored that."

On another front, in a January 23, 1999 editorial, The Virginian-Pilot called for the completion of an investigation concerning possible consumer fraud by Robertson. In 1997, the Virginia Beach newspaper accused Robertson of using Operation Blessing, a Robertson nonprofit charity, to carry diamond-mining equipment to Zaire on behalf of Robertson's for-profit mining company, the African Development Company. Robertson claims he reimbursed Operation Blessing for the use of the planes.

The Virginia Office of Consumer Affairs filed a report with the state's Attorney General, Mark L. Earley. After five months, Earley says the document remains under review. Pat Robertson gave Earley $35,000 for his 1997 campaign, becoming Earley's single largest donor.

© 1999 Institute for First Amendment Studies, Inc.