Jerry Falwell Jr.’s Leadership at Liberty Appears Near End

On Monday, a enterprise affiliate named Giancarlo Granda alleged in an interview with Reuters that for years he had common sexual liaisons with Mr. Falwell’s spouse, Becki, as Mr. Falwell regarded on. He mentioned he met the couple in 2012 whereas a younger pool attendant at a luxurious lodge in Miami.

In an announcement launched Sunday night that appeared to anticipate the revelations, Mr. Falwell conceded that his spouse had engaged in an “inappropriate personal relationship” with Mr. Granda, however mentioned that he “was not involved.” He added that Mr. Granda tried to extort the couple to maintain the affair a secret, an ordeal so upsetting that it had triggered him to hunt psychological well being therapy.

Mr. Falwell and Ms. Falwell didn’t reply to requests for remark.

The affiliation with Mr. Granda first acquired consideration in 2019 after reviews emerged that years earlier, Mr. Falwell had requested Michael Cohen, a fixer for President Trump, for assist suppressing images that will have embarrassed the household. Mr. Falwell introduced his endorsement of Mr. Trump quickly afterward, shocking advisers to Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, who had been anticipating Mr. Falwell to help his marketing campaign.

The finish of Mr. Falwell’s tenure would mark the autumn of a pugnacious chief who took over management of Liberty, one of many largest Christian faculties within the nation, someday after his father’s dying in 2007.

Liberty has had a Falwell at its helm since Mr. Falwell’s father, a pastor with a style for conservative politics, based the varsity as Lynchburg Baptist College in 1971. Jerry Falwell Sr. aimed to show the school right into a nationwide establishment and soccer powerhouse, with the slogan “Champions for Christ.”

The youthful Mr. Falwell appeared to satisfy his mission. The faculty now performs within the high division of faculty soccer, successful its first bowl sport final 12 months. Liberty reviews an enrollment of greater than 120,000 college students, together with 15,000 who attend lessons on its increasing campus in Lynchburg, Va.

Mr. Falwell’s personal nationwide profile has risen dramatically since he endorsed Mr. Trump’s presidential bid in early 2016, earlier than the Iowa caucus and considerably earlier than most conservative evangelicals had warmed to him. He turned one of many president’s most vocal evangelical supporters, talking at the 2016 Republican National Convention and turning into a daily presence on Fox News.

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