Mitt Romney did not mince his words when it came to calling out an Evangelical pastor who ended up speaking at the opening ceremony for the new U.S. Embassy in Jerusalem, Israel on Monday.

Mitt Romney Criticizes Pastor Robert Jeffress

The Republican Senate candidate and former Massachusetts Governor, who is Mormon, slammed Rev. Robert Jeffress — who led the opening prayer at the embassy’s unveiling — as a “religious bigot,” citing disparaging comments Jeffress has made about other religions.

Jeffress, who is based in Dallas and is a prominent supporter of President Donald Trumpbacked Romney’s bid for president in 2012, even though he had made offensive remarks about the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints around that time. The pastor has also called Mormonism a “cult.”

The pastor is one of dozens of Evangelicals who have been criticized for standing by Trump despite the many scandals he has become engulfed in, including his 2006 extramarital affair with porn star Stormy Daniels.

“Evangelicals know they’re not compromising their beliefs in order to support this great president,” Jeffress 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 added.

The unveiling of the new U.S. Embassy came in the midst of a series of violent protests from Palestinians, over 52 of whom were killed by Israeli forces near the Gaza border. More than 2,000 other Palestinians were injured in the demonstrations.

Trump officially recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital in December.

Jeffress has also very explicitly stated his disdain for Islam.

“Is Islam just another way to worship God? Let me say this without any hesitation: Islam is a false religion that is based on a false book that was written by a false prophet,” he said on Oct. 9, according to his church’s website. “If you sincerely follow the tenets of Islam, then you will end up in hell when you die.”

Rev. John Hagee, a pastor from San Antonio, recited the closing prayer at the embassy opening.

According to NBC News, approximately 80 percent of white evangelicals voted for Trump in 2016.


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