Trump Supporter Franklin Graham Says 'Dark Winter' Is Due to 'Moral Decline,' Not Just COVID

Evangelical leader and President Donald Trump supporter Franklin Graham warned the U.S. is entering a "dark winter" not just because of COVID-19, but because God is "turn[ing] his back" on a country with deteriorating morals.

Graham, head of the humanitarian Samaritan's Purse organization and son of the late Baptist minister Billy Graham, spoke out on Twitter Friday morning. He lashed out at President-elect Joe Biden's November prediction of a "very dark winter" if the pandemic continues to be politicized.

Graham claimed "moral decline" has taken over the U.S. and its political process, suggesting that Trump's loss to Biden was somehow not legitimate—an unfounded claim that has been repeatedly tweeted by the president himself, now just 19 days before Biden's inauguration. Graham, unlike the hundreds of replies which blasted Democrats, did not reference any specific moral failures of either Trump or Biden. There was also no mention of the more than 300,000 cases of U.S. deaths tied to COVID-19 since March.

"@JoeBiden has warned of a 'dark winter' for our nation. But the dark winter we're facing is not due just to #COVID19, it's due to the moral decline & the political corruption we see throughout the US. My prayer is that truth will prevail in the political crisis we're facing," Graham tweeted Friday.

His tweet is in reference to Biden's comments right after his November election victory over Trump. The president-elect declared "a very dark winter" was approaching as U.S. coronavirus cases topped 10 million despite continued politicization of mitigation measures such as the wearing of masks and social distancing.

Graham went on to relay an exchange between World War II-era British Prime Minister Winston Churchill and his father, before declaring "there is no hope for the future of our world" without God. He praised the president's Thursday remarks in which the latter appealed to his evangelical base.

"A society without religion cannot prosper," Trump proclaimed in a call to end "religious persecution" globally.

The longtime evangelical leader continued his early New Year's Day warning to Americans on Twitter: "We could face a dark period of history as God turns His back on our nation because of its sins & our politicians embracing, & even flaunting, sin. Sadly to say, even some churches are embracing what God defines as sin. We need to confess our sins & turn to Him in true repentance."

Trump had boasted during his 2016 presidential campaign: "I have a great relationship with God. I have a great relationship with the Evangelicals. I like to be good. I don't like to have to ask for forgiveness."

.@JoeBiden has warned of a "dark winter" for our nation. But the dark winter we're facing is not due just to #COVID19, it's due to the moral decline & the political corruption we see throughout the US. My prayer is that truth will prevail in the political crisis we're facing.

— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) January 1, 2021

Graham has long been one of Trump's most staunch supporters. He told Axios that his backing of the Republican president is simple: "Trump defends the faith" from financial and political pushback in Washington.

After acknowledging that he was disappointed in Trump's loss just a few weeks ago, Graham wrote a lengthy Facebook post on December 14 in which he thanked God for Trump opposing abortion procedures and nominating conservative judge to the Supreme Court.

Last September, speeches led by Graham and Vice President Mike Pence at an event in Washington, D.C., thanked God that Trump was able to nominate Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court following the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Like many evangelical leaders, Graham has frequently claimed the country is spiraling into moral decline during those same remarks.

"Father, our country is in trouble, we need your help. And father we pray today specifically for the president, Donald J. Trump," Graham said in the prayer.

Newsweek reached out to the White House and representatives for Graham for additional remarks Friday morning.

donald trump franklin graham prayer
President Donald Trump, first lady Melania Trump and Franklin Graham bow their heads in prayer during a ceremony as the late evangelist Billy Graham lies in repose at the U.S. Capitol, on February 28, 2018 in Washington, DC. Rev. Graham is being honored by Congress by lying in repose inside of the U.S. Capitol Rotunda for 24 hours. Graham was the nation's best know Christian evangelist, preaching to millions worldwide, as well as being an advisor to US presidents over his six decade career. SHAWN THEW - Pool/Getty Images