Robertson resigns from Christian Coalition
Thursday, December 6, 2001
NORFOLK, Va. -- Pat Robertson resigned Wednesday as president and member of the board of directors of the Christian Coalition, a political force of the religious right.
The religious broadcaster said he plans to concentrate on his Christian ministry.
"I'm going to be 72 in March, and I felt that in these years left to me that the most important thing was for me to focus on the spiritual ministry, where I started back in 1960," Robertson said in a telephone interview from his Christian Broadcasting Network headquarters in Virginia Beach. He founded CBN in 1960.
"We have seen what I consider the most extraordinary movement of spiritual revival in my entire lifetime. I want to be part of that."
Robertson said he also wants to be more active overseas, noting that CBN now operates in more than 90 countries. He just returned from a visit to China last week.
"I would rather be active in spiritual ministry than engaged in political activity anymore," Robertson said.
The board chose Roberta Combs, who had been executive vice president, to replace him as president.
Robertson founded the Christian Coalition in 1989, a year after his failed bid for the Republican nomination for president.
Combs said the coalition will miss Robertson's active role.
"He just happens to be focused now on prayer and revival, which the country so desperately needs," she said. "The Christian Coalition itself as an organization will continue to go on. Thousands, millions of Christians out there are still interested in the political process, interested in having a voice at state, local and national levels."
Robertson said he believes the coalition will remain strong without him.
"Any organization can be renewed and refreshed," he said.
He said he will continue to comment on public affairs on his "700 Club" television program. "But my active participation as a member of the Christian Coalition has come to an end," he said.