jerry falwell miami hostel
Details about what the photos showed and who had them remain murky. Note: VirtualGlobetrotting is an entertainment website is and is not associated Until now, Falwell had made no public comment about his role in the business, a dormitory-style hotel in Miami Beach. After the post drew criticism on Twitter as being beneath a religious leader, Mr. Falwell responded that he did not need to adhere to strict religious standards.

Nor is it certain whom Mr. Cohen hoped to pay off. The building also housed a restaurant and a liquor store. The evangelical Christian Trump backer, an acquaintance of Michael Cohen’s, helped a hotel pool attendant in a business after befriending him in 2012.

But more broadly, this is a tale of financial, institutional, and political corruption involving one of the most prominent evangelical organizations in the country — and the saga may even have helped make Donald Trump president. The trio evidently became very close very quickly. His articles have appeared in the New York Times, Boston Globe and the BBC, among other outlets. Their name changes took place after Mr. Cohen intervened.

Unsure how to capitalize on the offer, Mr. Granda consulted a close high school friend, Jesus Fernandez Jr., whose father, Jesus Fernandez Sr., had worked in Miami real estate for decades, the Fernandezes would later assert.

Over the last two years, Mr. Arnold has fashioned himself an anti-Trump sleuth and crusader, working to dig up evidence of past malfeasance on television and in social media. There is no evidence that these discussions played any part in the endorsement. “For those of the more fundamentalist variant of evangelicalism, the Falwell family, and the Falwell endorsements, are an important factor,” said Jim Guth, a political-science professor at Furman University who has long studied evangelical politics. Evangelical leader Jerry Falwell Jr. resigned as president of Liberty University Tuesday amid an unfolding sex scandal. Mr. Trump lacked the religious bona fides of those who typically filled the school’s speaker lineup. He told journalist Richard Chumney that his exit was a “relief,” and added that “the quote that keeps going through my mind this morning is Martin Luther King Jr.: ‘free at last, free at last, thank God almighty I’m free at last.”’. Cohen was sentenced to three years in prison in federal court earlier this month after pleading guilty to lying to Congress and unrelated illegal campaign finance violations. For the past 21 years, Browarnik has photographed Miami nightlife.

Senator Ted Cruz announced his presidential run at Liberty University in 2015.

Mr. Granda, who traveled to Liberty to hear Mr. Trump speak in 2012, was photographed on a private plane with a copy of “Trump: The Art of The Deal.”. The Falwells denied making any such promise, and in his affidavit, Mr. Falwell sought to minimize his involvement, saying that, as an adviser on the deal, he could not have given them a stake. The comedian and actor Tom Arnold, left, secretly recorded Mr. Cohen describing his plan to help the Falwells by paying off someone who claimed to have compromising photos.

Then, on Sunday, Falwell suddenly confirmed to a friendly columnist at the Washington Examiner that his wife did in fact have a “personal relationship” with Granda, though he maintained he didn’t know about it and it caused him great pain when he found out. He parlayed that national fame into political influence by founding the Moral Majority, a political group that mobilized conservative evangelical Christians to play a greater role in politics — and to support the Republican Party. One of Cohen’s most important duties for Trump had long been to make embarrassing or potentially damaging problems go away. Falwell played a key role in the 2016 presidential election four years later when he abruptly endorsed Donald Trump and helped to deliver the overwhelming support of white evangelical Christians. By signing up you agree to receive email newsletters or updates from POLITICO and you agree to our privacy policy and terms of service. Within months, they were offering to help him get started in business in Florida. Around that time, Mr. Falwell was coming under heavy pressure to get behind Mr. Trump, according to someone who spoke to Mr. Falwell then. Jerry Jr. never did become a minister, and his credentials in providing religious guidance may have been questionable. ), Trump had flirted with running for president the previous year, with Cohen taking a leading role in that proto-campaign. That conversation, two months before Mr. Cohen went to prison, left more questions than answers. “That’s why I have an archive of five million photos,” Browarnik told me. He took the leading role in negotiating with creditors, and he made a flurry of real estate maneuvers that helped get the university out of its hole. Granda, who met Falwell while working as a pool attendant at the … And there’s a Trump angle. For a while, it looked like it all worked out. In all, three people said they had seen at least one photo, though their descriptions varied and could not be verified. By Monday night, there were conflicting reports on whether Falwell had in fact resigned, but on Tuesday, Falwell confirmed that he was out. What’s more, he said, Mr. Cohen “did nothing more than ask” Mr. Falwell to endorse Mr. Trump. “Later, my wife and I provided additional funds of $800,000 for renovations of Alton Hostel which are being treated as an additional loan.”. If you haven’t, please consider helping everyone understand this presidential election: Contribute today from as little as $3. “If the person in the picture is me, it was likely photo-shopped,” Falwell said. His involvement came to light only because two former participants, a father and son, said they were pushed out of the deal. Granda now tells Politico that, at the time, Becki Falwell told him that “Michael is well-connected in Miami,” and that he’d “get this buried and will make those photos go away.”. One day after POLITICO published a piece in which Jerry Falwell Jr. denied visiting a Miami Beach nightclub in July 2014 and alleged that any images showing such were “photo-shopped,” a new trove of photos showing Falwell at the club has been released.

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