Rev. Jerry Falwell may have founded Liberty University, but students there seemed more interested in firearms than Christ during a Wednesday event featuring Republican presidential candidate Rick Perry.
Mention of the National Rifle Association (NRA) drew noticeably louder cheers than did the notion of “Christian values,” which only prompted a smattering of applause.
Upon announcing the Texas governor, Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr. noted Perry’s support for the rights of gun owners.
“Liberty became one of only 78 universities in the nation to receive to receive a credit rating of AA or higher from Standard & Poor’s,” he said, adding that the credit rating agency had given the institution a positive outlook, while “they gave President Obama and the United State of America a negative outlook. So, we’re proud of that.”
“Today’s speaker also has an A+ rating, but it’s from the National Rifle Association,” Falwell said.
The chancellor’s remarks were interrupted with enthusiastic cheers from the audience of about 10,000 students.
Perry began his speech by thanking American Renewal Project’s David Lane for helping him to organize a prayer event called “The Response” earlier this year.
“What a powerful message that we brought pastors together across the state of Texas, sharing with them the importance that they need to stand in the pulpit every day and defend the values, those Christian values,” Perry said. “America is going to be guided by some set of values. The question is going to be who’s values?”
“And David Lane and I — and I would suggest the people in this audience — believe it’s those Christian values that this country was based upon!”
Perry paused for a reaction, but the audience could only muster reluctant applause.
Watch this video from CNN, broadcast Sept. 13, 2011.