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God-O-Meter

huckabeepicture.jpgMike Huckabee is standing by one of the six televangelists whose finances are being investigated by Sen. Charles Grassley, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee. The object of Huckabee’s affection is Kenneth Copeland, chief of Kenneth Copeland Ministries and host of its daily Believes Voice of Victory broadcast.
TIME has the story:

In the meantime, Huckabee is standing by the Copelands. In an e-mail message to TIME, Huckabee maintained, “Kenneth and Gloria Copeland are about the most gracious, authentic, and humble people I know and I consider them dear friends. They have brought hope to millions and have operated with the utmost integrity as far as I know. I have found them to be as warm and genuine in their private moments as they are in their public moments.”
That sentiment will find resonance among those Evangelical Christians who worry that Grassley’s pursuit of the six preachers, who all belong to a faction of Charismatic Christianity known loosely as “prosperity gospel,” amounts to what one observer called a “saint hunt.” It will not play as well with others who have grown increasingly frustrated at the opulent lifestyles of the televangelists. In any case, maintaining a friend’s innocence allows Huckabee to continue to access a part of the media important to Republican hopefuls. Charisma’s editor, J. Lee Grady, was slightly amused that anyone would think Copeland would be a burden on Huckabee. “Number one,” he says, “Just because Grassley’s investigating Copeland doesn’t mean Huckabee thinks he’s guilty. And number two, Huckabee is courting so many different camps, he’s gonna go wherever he’s welcomed.” Neither are Huckabee’s presidential rivals likely to press him on the matter: there is no point annoying religious conservatives.

God-o-Meter agrees. At least until it sees what, if anything, Grassley’s probe turns up.


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