A lot of people are scratching their heads wondering why the Rev. Pat Robertson, an ultra-conservative pro-life Republican, has thrown his support behind Rudy Giuliani, who is pro-abortion and anti-gun rights. They just can’t understand it, even though the answer to the question is simple: it’s all about money and power.
The French explain that behind most puzzling questions is a woman. “Cherchez la femme” is the way they put it – follow the woman. In America, however, when a public figure does something that seems totally out of character you can’t go wrong if you follow the money and the quest for power.
Pat Robertson is about money. Pat Robertson is about business. He looks at the contest for the Republican presidential nomination and he asks who the candidate is most likely to stop the Hillary train from roaring into the White House.
He’s fully aware that if Hillary wins the presidency, his businesses throughout the world – not just The 700 Club – and everything he stands for could be in absolute jeopardy. He knows what Hillary thinks about his operations. In backing Giuliani, he’s trying to protect his many interests because he thinks Rudy is the GOP candidate most likely to beat Hillary. To his mind, Rudy is the lesser of two evils.
I’m sure he said to himself, “Sure, Rudy is pro-choice and for gay rights and licensing of guns, and all these liberal issues but look at Mitt Romney, he’s a Mormon, a member of a cult.”
I think he understood that many conservative Christians oppose Romney exactly because he is a Mormon and would be more upset if he were to back Mitt instead of Rudy.
As far as the other conservative in the race -- Fred Thompson, the sentimental favorite -- Pat Robertson recognizes that he’s going nowhere. He’s failed to light any fires among conservatives. After all, Pat Robertson was once a candidate for the GOP nomination himself years ago, and he knows what it takes to win and he knows that Thompson doesn’t have it.
Taking all this into account, Pat Robertson sees Giuliani rising in the polls, Hillary slipping, Romney lagging back in the national polls, and apparently concludes that Giuliani is a winner and he wants to be on Rudy’s side when he reaches the Oval Office.
The same applies to the people backing Hillary. They know how vindictive the Clintons are and how vindictive the Democrats are, and they understand what will happen to them is they don’t get behind Hilary now, when it counts, and not after she wins when their backing would be meaningless.
The bottom line is there is always the fear that if you get on the wrong side when it counts, you’ll be frozen out when it comes to sharing in the spoils.
This is what Pat Robertson is showing us by getting behind Rudy now, still early in the game. In Robertson’s opinion, Rudy will go all the way, and he wants to be at the winner’s side when he enters the winner’s circle.
He knows that the guy who gets there first – the guy who gets on the train when it leaves the station -- is the guy who gets the most when it gets where it’s going.
Now all he has to do is explain why he’s backing a man who stands opposed to just about every moral issue of vital importance to most Christians. He’s going to have to explain how he can back a man who is stubbornly pro-choice, who supports gay marriage and sanctuary cities and opposes Second Amendment rights to gun ownership.
That question will be put to Pat Robertson, not Rudy Giuliani, because Rudy is not changing his position. Pat Robertson, on the other hand, is making a 180-degree turn from his vehement opposition to Rudy’s stand on the moral issues.
It’s going to be interesting to see how Robertson answers those inevitable questions.
The real answer, of course, is that after Rudy wins the election he will be able to say, "Rudy, I brought the Christian community in when Dr. Dobson and all the other Christian community leaders were chasing them away from you, and now you owe me big time."
And he can look at the defeated Hillary and say, “You don’t scare me one little bit.”