Reform Party presidential candidate Pat Buchanan called on students, faculty and supporters at Bob Jones University to join his campaign, dubbed “Gideon’s army,” to take America back from moral decadence.
In his first campaign speech since surgery in mid-August, Buchanan said, “I believe, and I hope, that one day we can take America back. That is why we are building this Gideon’s army, and heading for Armageddon, to do battle for the Lord.”
Buchanan attacked Hollywood, homosexuals and the Department of Education, according to news stories in the New York Times, Washington Post, Charlotte Observer, State and Salon.com
In addition to calling for the expulsion of the United Nations from the United States, Buchanan said he would bring home American troops and station them along the Mexican border to the protect the nation from illegal immigration.
Buchanan also said the courts had “dethroned God.”
“Now who deChristianized America?” he asked. “In my judgment the principle culprit is the United States Supreme Court.”
Buchanan told reporters he chose Bob Jones University to send a message that “I stand by my friends.” He said, “I don’t believe in trendy liberal discrimination against fundamentalist religious schools because their interpretation of the Bible does not accord with political correctness.”
Bob Jones III, the university’s president, introduced Buchanan as a “great friend to me personally. I have great admiration for him. He says what he believes and stands up for what he believes.”
Following Buchanan’s speech, Jones said, “America will probably not survive another election as a free people if the Democrats get back into office.”
One newspaper reported that Jones said only a candidate who “stands up and will not shut up” can defeat Democratic nominee Al Gore. Another paper read that Jones said only a man like Buchanan could win. Salon.com cited Jones having “less than kind words for some unnamed candidate who sought to ‘talk like Gore.'”
The Washington Post reported Buchanan plans to spend his $12.5 million from the Federal Election Commission advertising “on Christian and talk radio stations attempting to win at least 5 percent in the general election so that the party will qualify for federal money in 2004.”