Romney Condemns Pastor Scheduled to Open New Jerusalem Embassy

Former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, who is now bidding for Senate, criticized the pastor that is scheduled to give a speech at Monday’s ceremony for the opening of the new U.S. embassy in Jerusalem.

“Robert Jeffress says ‘you can’t be saved by being a Jew,’ and ‘Mormonism is a heresy from the pit of hell.’ He’s said the same about Islam. Such a religious bigot should not be giving the prayer that opens the United States Embassy in Jerusalem,” Romney tweeted.

The Hill reported that Jeffress, a Dallas-based pastor and known supporter of President Donald Trump, stated over the weekend that he would be leading the prayer at the dedication of the new embassy.

Trump in December announced his decision to relocate the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem. The decision was met with strong criticism from U.S. international partners and sparked concerns of a widening conflict in the Middle East.

According to another report from Haaretz, Jeffress has made derogatory remarks about Islam in the past, calling it “a religion that promotes pedophilia” and a “heresy from the pit of hell.”

He has also called Mormonism “a cult” that is not a true part of Christianity and said “you can’t be saved by being a Jew,” Haaretz reported.

However, Jeffress still endorsed Romney, who is Mormon, for president back in 2012, despite derogatory comments the pastor made at the time about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

The pastor is known to be a strong defender of Trump in the midst of numerous controversies, including allegations that the president had an affair with adult film actress Stormy Daniels.

“Evangelicals know they’re not compromising their beliefs in order to support this great president,” he told Fox News in March. “And let’s be clear, evangelicals still believe in the commandment ‘thou shalt not have sex with a porn star.’”

“However, whether this president violated that commandment or not is totally irrelevant to our support of him,” he said.

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