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Pat Robertson's apology - so am I back in on the $50 million contract?

Reported by Chrish - January 12, 2006

John Gibson used his "My Word" segment on The Big Story today 1/12/06 to aid in the rehabilitation of religious right-winger Pat Robertson and to admonish that he should be careful what he says because it could be misconstrued. Over a chyron of "Reverend Pat Robertson put his foot in mouth the other day" Gibson said that Robertson "seemed to say" that Israeli Prime Minister Sharon's stroke was an act of God, punishment for Sharon's policies. Video was played of Robertson reading his apologetic letter to Sharon's son.

Gibson appeared to try to ameliorate Robertson's comments:

"The point of this episode for Robertson and anyone else who speaks out in public on these major issues is be careful, and be afraid. Sometimes what you can say may be taken in a way you may not have meant it, and sometimes it can come back to haunt you. "

Comment: Perhaps Gibson is feeling a little simpatico with the "Reverend."

Robertson had just recently entered into a business deal to build a center for evangelical Christians to patronize in Israel. He apologized as Israel's Tourism minister rescinded the deal per an AP report:

Israel will not do business with Pat Robertson after the evangelical leader suggested Prime Minister Ariel Sharon’s massive stroke was divine punishment for the Gaza withdrawal, a tourism official said yesterday.

Robertson is leading a group of evangelicals who have pledged to raise $50 million to build a large Christian tourism center in Israel’s northern Galilee region, where tradition says Jesus lived and taught.

But Avi Hartuv, a spokesman for Tourism Minister Avraham Hirschson, said Israeli officials were furious with Robertson, a Christian broadcaster. A day after Sharon’s Jan. 4 stroke, Robertson said the prime minister was being punished for "dividing God’s land" — a reference to last summer’s pullout from the Gaza Strip and four West Bank settlements.

Hartuv said the Christian Heritage Center project is now in question, though he left the door open to develop it with others.

"We will not do business with him, only with other evangelicals who don’t back these comments," Hartuv said. "We will do business with other evangelical leaders, friends of Israel, but not with him."

I'll leave you to decide when Pat Robertson was being sincere.

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