FALWELL SAYS HE’S RESIGNED FROM LIBERTY UNIVERSITY
RICHMOND, Va. — Jerry Falwell Jr. announced his resignation Tuesday as the head of Liberty University after a provocative photo and revelations of his wife’s extramarital affair roiled the evangelical school founded by his father.
Falwell’s exit marks a precipitous fall from power for one of the country’s most visible conservative Christian leaders and ardent supporters of President Donald Trump. He confirmed his decision to resign in a wide-ranging interview with The Associated Press.
According to the school, he initially offered to resign Monday, hours after a news outlet published an interview with a man who said that he had a yearslong sexual relationship with Becki Falwell and that Jerry Falwell participated in some of the liaisons as a voyeur. Falwell, who denied any participation, later reversed course on his resignation. Then he changed direction again.
“That’s the only reason I resigned: because I don’t want something my wife did to harm the school I’ve spent my whole life building,” he said in a phone interview. “I never broke a single rule that applies to staff members at Liberty, which I was. So I want everybody to know that.”
Becki Falwell also spoke with the AP on Tuesday, saying she and her husband are “more in love than ever” — a sentiment echoed by an audibly tearful Jerry Falwell.
“We have the strongest relationship, and Jerry is the most forgiving person I’ve ever met,” she said. “It’s a shame that Christians can’t give us the same forgiveness that Christ gave us.”
On Tuesday, Giancarlo Granda released a statement reaffirming his allegation that Jerry Falwell was aware of Granda’s relationship with his wife and acted as a voyeur.
Falwell did not address Granda’s version of events during Tuesday’s interview, but has previously said they were false. Granda called the Falwells’ denials of his account a “fiction” akin to victim shaming.
Jerry Falwell Jr.