The Corner

Politics & Policy

Vander Plaats Fires Back at Trump, Mocks ‘Two Corinthians’

Ottumwa, Iowa – Hours after Donald Trump took to Twitter to hurl a series of insults and accusations at Bob Vander Plaats, the influential Iowa Evangelical and Ted Cruz backer, Vander Plaats returned fire during a Cruz rally here Tuesday afternoon.

Earlier in the day Tuesday, Trump ripped off a series of antagonistic tweets aimed at Vander Plaats. Two in particular turned heads:

To the second charge, Vander Plaats replied:

When he took the stage here to kick off Cruz’s townhall-style event, Vander Plaats immediately referenced his “little spat” with Trump over Twitter, and cited it as evidence that Trump lacks the “judgment and discernment” to be president.

This wasn’t an isolated incident, Vander Plaats argued. He pointed to four episodes that he said similarly demonstrated Trump’s poor judgment: His assertion last summer that he’d never asked God for forgiveness; his ridiculing John McCain for being captured as a prisoner of war; his apparent mocking of a disabled reporter; and his recent claim that he could “shoot somebody” without losing any support for his presidential bid.

Vander Plaats told the audience of several hundred here that Trump “is a friend of mine,” but quickly added, “That kind of pride, that kind of arrogance, in my opinion has no business in the White House.”

At an event where Cruz swore he would not “respond in kind” to Trump’s attacks on him, Vander Plaats had no problem picking up the slack. The longtime Christian activist argued that Trump has no core values when it comes to the social issues that play so prominently in Iowa Republican politics.

“Right now Donald Trump is saying, ‘The establishment is warming up to me. Why? Because I know how to deal,’” Vander Plaats said. “Well I’m sorry, but the sanctity of human life is not up for the art of the deal. God’s design for marriage is not up for the art of the deal. The US Supreme Court trying to make law is not up for the art of the deal. Our alliance with the nation of Israel is not up for the art of the deal.”

The audience roared with approval. Vander Plaats piled on by taking a parting shot at Trump’s recent mispronunciation of the Biblical book of 2 Corinthians. Citing a verse from the 18th chapter of the book of Exodus, Vander Plaats told the audience, “The scripture is very clear on who you should choose to represent you. If you don’t know what that scripture is, I’d ask that you go home and study it.”

He paused, then added: “It’s well before Second Corinthians.”

Most Popular

White House

The Damning Inspector General’s Report

It is hard to believe that the run-up to the presidential-election year has plumbed such a depth of farcical degradation. It must be that Trump’s influence has contributed to unserious responses, but he can’t be blamed for the unutterable nonsense of his opponents and the straight men of the political class ... Read More
White House

The Damning Inspector General’s Report

It is hard to believe that the run-up to the presidential-election year has plumbed such a depth of farcical degradation. It must be that Trump’s influence has contributed to unserious responses, but he can’t be blamed for the unutterable nonsense of his opponents and the straight men of the political class ... Read More
World

Present at the Demolition

Economists at the World Bank and International Monetary Fund must feel pretty lucky these days. They work for just about the only institutions set up in the aftermath of World War II that aren't in the middle of an identity crisis. From Turtle Bay to Brussels, from Washington to Vienna, the decay of the economic ... Read More
World

Present at the Demolition

Economists at the World Bank and International Monetary Fund must feel pretty lucky these days. They work for just about the only institutions set up in the aftermath of World War II that aren't in the middle of an identity crisis. From Turtle Bay to Brussels, from Washington to Vienna, the decay of the economic ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
Elections

Diversity Panic Hits the Democratic Field

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before. An Asian guy, two black guys, three white women (one of whom spent much of her life claiming to be Native American), a Pacific Islander woman, a gay guy, a Hispanic guy, two elderly Caucasian Jews (one a billionaire, the other a socialist), a self-styled Irishman, and a ... Read More
World

Well . . . .

So much for my prophecies of doom. Britain's Conservatives won, and they won with a very healthy parliamentary majority, breaking through Labour’s “red wall” across the industrial (and post-industrial) Midlands and the North. The BBC: Leave-voting former mining towns like Workington, which was seen as ... Read More
World

Well . . . .

So much for my prophecies of doom. Britain's Conservatives won, and they won with a very healthy parliamentary majority, breaking through Labour’s “red wall” across the industrial (and post-industrial) Midlands and the North. The BBC: Leave-voting former mining towns like Workington, which was seen as ... Read More
White House

The Costs of Trivializing Impeachment

Resorting to a vague “abuse of power” theory, the House Judiciary Committee Friday morning referred two articles of impeachment to the full House on the inevitable party-line vote. The full House will impeach the president next week, perhaps Wednesday, also on the inevitable party-line vote. The scarlet ... Read More
White House

The Costs of Trivializing Impeachment

Resorting to a vague “abuse of power” theory, the House Judiciary Committee Friday morning referred two articles of impeachment to the full House on the inevitable party-line vote. The full House will impeach the president next week, perhaps Wednesday, also on the inevitable party-line vote. The scarlet ... Read More