Pat Robertson, a prominent Baptist minister known for his involvement in politics and the founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network, has passed away at the age of 93. Robertson, who gained fame as the host of The 700 Club, had a significant impact on Christian conservatives and played a key role in helping Republicans secure control of Congress in 1994.
Born Marion Gordon Robertson in 1930, he defied conventions throughout his life, embracing the nickname “Pat” given to him by his brother. Robertson founded the Christian Broadcasting Network in 1960, and his vision and entrepreneurial spirit led him to establish a Christian university, a law school, and an international NGO focused on disaster relief.
While his approach to business and his on-air persona were considered unconventional by some, Robertson’s influence spanned various interests and industries, breaking barriers for countless Christian leaders. Despite facing criticism for mixing church and state during his unsuccessful 1988 campaign for the Republican presidential nomination, he continued to be politically active and founded the Christian Coalition, which contributed to the conservative faith-based political resurgence of the 1990s.
Robertson had a multifaceted personality, alternating between a friendly local minister and making statements that were seen as controversial and divisive. He attributed the 9/11 terrorist attacks to American sinfulness and claimed that Haiti’s earthquake was divine retribution. He made provocative remarks about liberal Protestants, feminism, and even called for the assassination of President Hugo Chávez of Venezuela. Robertson also claimed that his prayers had the power to avert hurricanes.
His legacy encompasses a broad range of achievements and controversies, leaving a lasting impact on the intersection of religion, media, and politics in the United States.