Jerry Falwell Jr. gained power and prestige after becoming President of the nation’s largest Christian university.
But his position at Liberty University appeared to go to his head, with several controversies surrounding his personal life in recent years.
And Jerry Falwell Jr. fell hard and fast after these embarrassing photos hit the press.
Presiding over the famous school his father founded, Jerry Falwell Jr. leveraged his position for political power and prestige.
It wasn’t necessarily a bad thing, given how he used his influence to encourage evangelicals to support President Donald Trump during the 2016 election.
But as the head of the largest Christian university in the country, Falwell painted a target on his back for leftists who hate everything about the Christian values the school promotes.
You’d think knowing that Falwell would walk the straight and narrow path.
Instead, rumors and stories dogged him for years about living a playboy lifestyle in Miami where he owns property.
The press had a field day when pictures of him in a Miami nightclub emerged. Leftist reporters slammed him for hypocrisy given that Liberty University has strict rules against alcohol consumption and co-ed dancing – both of which were clearly occurring in the nightclub.
But despite all of that, Falwell maintained his influence and position in the evangelical community.
Until new pictures came out, that proved to be the final straw.
One of the pictures shows Falwell on a yacht with his arm around a woman who isn’t his wife, with both of their midsections being pulled up on their shirts, and their pants unzipped, as Falwell appears to hold an alcoholic drink in his hand.
Falwell said the picture was of his wife’s assistant, and it was meant as a joke.
“She’s pregnant, so she couldn’t get her pants up,” he said in the interview. “And I had on a pair of jeans that I hadn’t worn in a long time so I couldn’t get mine zipped either. And so I just put my belly out like hers.”
“She’s my wife’s assistant and she’s a sweetheart, and I should never have put it up and embarrassed her,” he continued.
The whole thing was part of a costume party, Falwell claimed, hoping to play it off as innocent fun.
But a video put together by Pulpit and Pen of the now-deleted photos shows a stunning lack of judgement given that the “costume party” was themed as an imitation of Trailer Park Boys, a raunchy Canadian TV show that features characters who run around smoking pot, drinking, and swearing in virtually every episode.
Despite his apology and excuses, it wasn’t enough to save his position at Liberty University.
The question is, will it have an impact on evangelical’s voter enthusiasm for Trump heading into the critical 2020 elections.
Only time will tell.
Political Animal News will keep you up-to-date on any developments to this ongoing story.