There is a divergence of political opinion in Louisiana’s conservative first family.
No, not the Jindals, but the Robertsons.
Patriarch Phil Robertson is in the Cruz corner, and Willie is down with The Donald.
“Mr. Trump is a real leader,” Willie Robertson said Thursday, according to a release from the Trump campaign. “He represents success and strength, two attributes our country needs. Like me, he is a successful businessman and family man, and I endorsed his candidacy for president of the United States.”
In a pilgrimage to Sin City, Willie joined the thrice-married Trump at the Outdoor Sportsman Awards in Las Vegas. In the temporary camo capital of the world, we do not doubt that Robertson’s blessing helped his candidate.
Alas, his father already had endorsed U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, of Texas. The two hunted together, the elder of the Robertson clan said, and he’s one of our kind.
How much do these endorsements matter? That’s a topic of debate for every endorsement, whether it is from an officeholder or a pop star or someone in between, such as former Gov. Sarah Palin. (She is for Trump, by the way.)
In terms of deliverables, as Trump might say, his new endorsement perhaps does counterbalance dad Robertson’s endorsement of the Harvard-educated lawyer from Texas.
In terms of family values, though, we are doubtful the Robertsons have as much sway as they used to, having supported the losing candidate in the 2015 governor’s race, U.S. Sen. David Vitter, who was much criticized because of past sins.
In yet another case of Louisiana’s political heft in the GOP, it was revealed that Trump took coaching on his Liberty University speech from Tony Perkins, former legislator and head of the national Family Research Council.
Regrettably for Trump, he took his script too literally, reading one of the Bible citations as “Two Corinthians.” Running for president does take one away from Sunday school, in more ways than one, but Trump’s is a lapse that can hardly be blamed on Perkins.