Donald Trump says it’s Tony Perkins’ fault he said “two Corinthians” instead of “Second Corinthians” during a speech at Liberty University this week — a mistake that raised questions about his biblical knowledge as he courts evangelical voters.
The Republican presidential front-runner said in an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon Wednesday that Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council, had given him notes on what to say when he visited the evangelical university in Lynchburg, Virginia.
“Tony Perkins wrote that out for me — he actually wrote out 2, he wrote out the number 2 Corinthians,” Trump said. “I took exactly what Tony said, and I said, ‘Well Tony has to know better than anybody.’ “
Trump’s pronunciation of the Bible verse drew laughter from the Christian audience — but he downplayed it, saying his Scottish mother would have said “two Corinthians,” as well.
“It’s a very small deal, but a lot of people in different sections of the world say two, and I’ve had many, many people say that to me. My mother, as you know, was from Scotland, and they say two,” Trump said.
Perkins said Thursday he was “guilty as charged” of writing the verse the way Trump described.
“No, I don’t dispute it at all. I wrote the scripture reference, which is 2 Corinthians 3:17, which is how it’s written,” he told CNN’s Erin Burnett on “OutFront.” “I’m guilty as charged. That’s exactly what I did. I sent him a couple of suggestions of some things he could talk about as a connection point.”
“It shows that he’s not familiar with Bible,” Perkins added. “Donald Trump’s a very interesting guy. There are some things about him that I find fascinating, that I like about him, as well as other evangelicals.”
Perkins, who has not yet endorsed a candidate, said “there’s a lot more to consider” before he gets behind a candidate.
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