A pastor in Virginia is facing a revolt from his own congregation after he put up a sign echoing controversial comments from President Donald Trump.
Pastor E.W. Lucas of Friendship Baptist Church in Appomattox made headlines last week after putting up the sign “America, I love it. If you don’t love it, leave it.”
The pastor put up the sign the same week that Trump lashed out at progressive congresswomen with a racist demand they “go back” to their country of origin.
“People that feel hard about our president and want to down the president and down the country and everything, they ought to go over there and live in these other countries for a little while,” Lucas told WSET.
This past Sunday, however, members of his church walked out of the service.
According to WSET, “the church was empty for its 11 a.m. service.”
But the pastor is standing behind his message.
“I’ve tried to be honest,” Lucas told WSET. “I’ve tried to do what’s right. But I believe in my country. I love my country. And I don’t mind standing up for the country.”
WATCH: CNN fact checker shows how Trump campaign ‘egregiously altered’ Biden photos in new ad
CNN fact checker Daniel Dale on Thursday showed on President Donald Trump's campaign has been blatantly manipulating photos of former Vice President Joe Biden to make it look like he has spent the last year sitting in his basement.
While appearing on "New Day," Dale dissected images of Biden in Trump's new ad and showed how the campaign used Photoshop to put the photos in a completely different context.
"[The ad] uses three misleading images, one of which is egregiously altered," Dale said. "That first image shows Joe Biden speaking at a town hall in Iowa outdoors at a nature preserve... what the ad does is remove the microphone from his hand and remove the trees, replacing it with a wall to make him seem like he's alone and not talking to anyone."
Expert explains the psychopathology that underlies Trump’s dictatorial behavior
I’m not being hyperbolic or melodramatic when I say that democracy itself is on the line on November 3. Donald Trump has been on a mission to subvert our democracy and to push it toward an autocracy. No president has ever disavowed democracy like Trump. No president has ever wanted to change our democratic way of life like Trump.
Trump has shown little interest or intent in following our Constitution. He is not abiding by the emoluments clause. He breaks norms and rules at will. He does not recognize that the three branches of government are co-equal. He operates as if the executive branch has total power. Our democracy is not based on the executive branch having absolute power. It requires that the three branches have separate powers in a check-and-balances system. Trump impugns democracy because it limits his power and requires him to be held accountable.
‘Donald who?’ Presidential historian predicts GOP support for Trump will erode in the face of a ‘blue wave’
MSNBC's Jon Meacham predicts that President Donald Trump won't be able to count on Republican support through a lengthy vote-counting process.
The historian and author told MSNBC's "Morning Joe" that GOP support may wane if Democrats strengthen their House majority and take over the Senate from Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, even if the results of the presidential election aren't known until weeks later.
"There's a much better chance that Joe Biden will end up somewhat centering the Democratic Party than anybody is going to come along and center the Republican Party," Meacham said, "and I think that's an existential threat to a Republican Party that has sold its soul, the check bounced, and they've got to figure out what are they going to do to attempt to be something approaching majority party in this demographically changing country."