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A movement to paint Obama as the Antichrist?
President Obama reacts as he's heckled at a Los Angeles fundraiser Monday night.
September 27th, 2011
04:54 PM ET

A movement to paint Obama as the Antichrist?

By Dan Gilgoff and Eric Marrapodi, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editors

(CNN) - On our sister blog The 1600 Report, CNN's Alex Mooney notes a discrepancy in the official White House transcript of a California fundraiser Monday night, during which a person who heckled President Barack Obama was escorted out by security.

Here's the White House transcript's account of the heckler:

AUDIENCE MEMBER: The Christian God is the only true living God, the Creator of the heavens and the universe.

But Mooney observes that the White House pool report records the heckler as being much more blunt, yelling "'Barack Obama is the Antichrist!"

The president interrupted his remarks at the fundraiser, held at Los Angeles' House of Blues, to respond to the heckler.

"First of all, I agree Jesus Christ is the Lord," Obama said. "I believe in that. I do have a question, though. I think the young man may have left his jacket... "

Ironically, the remark about Obama as the Antichrist came the same day that The New York Times ran an op-ed arguing that the Antichrist is assuming a bigger place in the public discourse, as evangelical Christian ideas about the end times gain traction.

In a piece titled "Why the Antichrist Matters in Politics," Washington State University history professor Matthew Avery Sutton argues that, for some Christians, Obama fits into ideas about the Antichrist, whose arrival is believed to be a portent of the end times and Jesus' second coming:

For some evangelicals, President Obama is troubling. The specious theories about his place of birth, his internationalist tendencies, his measured support for Israel and his Nobel Peace Prize fit their long-held expectations about the Antichrist. So does his commitment to expanding the reach of government in areas like health care.

The op-ed was the most e-mailed piece on nytimes.com for much of Tuesday.

In the 2008 campaign, Republican presidential nominee John McCain released an anti-Obama ad called "The One" that ridiculed Obama for what it said was his messiah complex. Some critics claimed the spot was a veiled attempt to paint Obama as the Antichrist, though the McCain camp denied it.

What do you think? Is there a gathering movement to paint the president as the Antichrist? Are such charges overblown attempt to discredit Obama's critics?

Read Mooney's full report here.
- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Barack Obama • Belief • Christianity • Politics

soundoff (2,491 Responses)
  1. KS Christian

    Actually, back in the day, I was afraid Ronald Wilson Reagan was the antiChrist. His initials numbered 666 and there's been nothing but hell to pay since the day he took office and created the original "Greed is Good" environment.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:50 am |
    • Bayousara

      Reagan was the worst president of the century by virtue that he was the most dangerous. And his treatment of women was an abomination. The women's movement suffered greatly under Reagan and his wife, who ran his administration after he started losing his mind.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  2. Bayousara

    Geez! Don't we have far more important things to worry about in this country? Let's just wait awhile as we vegetate and see what happens....then the Jesus folk can wonder why their prayers didn't come true! Our nation is going to hell iin a handbasket and all we talk about is religion and all the trouble it causes (witness the mid-East's problems). Is this what our younger generation (me being a senior) is putting time and effort and few brain cells into?

    September 28, 2011 at 11:50 am |
  3. pam

    Antichrist?-this is totally nuts..... where the heckis this country going? ignorance and illiteracy is what voted in our government in the first place. I would be more concerned with the possibility of Bachman or Perry becoming president.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
  4. ajgorm

    Lets just say when you die there is no turning back.. If you believe at all then you must admit to the possibility of an Anti Christ..And if you admit to being any form of believer then you are as liberal as all the sheep. I believe ! An Anti Christ wants to destroy the garden that God gave us to take care of,,,, Love the garden and you will be on the path to salvation.....avoid temptation...The Power of Love !

    September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • Bayousara

      I don't really care what your religious views are! Go to church, listen to the propaganda, and just keep to yourselves, you who believe all that garbage! All churches should be closed down, sanitized, and reopened to do NOTHING but take care of the poor, the sick, the dying. That is what the biblical Jesus taught, isn't it? Instead churches stand on the corner filled with hypocrites in their fine clothes when those folks could be out in their community worshiping by helping others–lots of people need help with lots of things! Imagine what one congregation could accomplish on a Sunday instead of sitting in a building, then having a koffee klatch, then out to brunch, home for the football games, etc. etc.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  5. s.positive

    THE BIBLE IS CLEAR THAT THE ANTICHRIST IS FROM THE OLD ROMAN EMPIRE. THIS SHOWS WHO READS THE BIBLE. READ REVELATIONS AND THE BOOK OF DANIEL. IT IS KIND OF BLACK AND WHITE.
    AGAIN, AMERICAN CHRISTIANS WITH POLITICAL FOCUS GETTING IT WROUNG AGAIN...

    September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
  6. William Hopper

    'Faith' is personal. 'Religion' is political. The goal of many right-wing politicians is to make sure listeners don't understand the difference between the two. Heathensguide.com

    September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
  7. No apologies

    Another example of CNN speculative tripe. Might as well ask "A Movement to Paint Obama as the Great Pumpkin?"

    September 28, 2011 at 11:48 am |
    • u r a nutjob

      i HEARD THE REPUBLICANS AND TEAPARTS HAVE ALREADY STARTED A CAMPAIGN

      September 28, 2011 at 11:50 am |
  8. Paul

    I think Obama is a WITCH!!!! Let's see if he floats! If not, burn him at the stake.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • Cindy

      Rick Perry might float, what with all that grease in his hair. Or maybe his hair is plastic and he'll sink, like he is in the polls.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • u r a nutjob

      POOP FLOATS

      September 28, 2011 at 11:50 am |
    • JohnQuest

      I think anyone that even speaks of doing harm to our President should be in jail. I didn't like the policy of President Bush nor do I like the policy of President Obama but I would never contemplate doing harm. If you don't agree with his policies, work to vote him out. If I knew who you were I would be the first to call the feds on you, if you are an American I am ashamed of you, your words offend me.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • Bayousara

      I agree that what you are saying is a borderline threat to our president. Watch your door, the feds might show up there any day.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:59 am |
    • Talonthaloth

      that people are even discussing this makes me want to move to europe. as a proud white american i can only say that i wish clinton would have declared a war on terror after mcveigh bombed oklahoma and we would have eliminated these fundamentalist christians the way we went after their muslim counterparts. obama may be flawed and have flawed policies but its nice to have someone in the office who at least appears to really give damn about us. these right wing tea party evangelical psychos are going to be bummed when their final days never come. Send them all some purple nikes and lets get on with a real political discussion like Special Interest groups and lobbyists or tax reform, or medical care or god forbid the wars in afghanistan or iraq.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:59 am |
  9. Sam I Am

    Anyone who believes in an "antichrist" probably also believes the world is flat and the sun revolves around the earth. The fact that we are actually discussing this as a serious subject is more terrifying than some antichrist boogyman. What it really comes down to is pure racism from the trailer trash states that should have been allowed to leave the union in the 1800's. There should be requirements to vote. Requirement #1: An education.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • justathough

      Well-said. How can you make a educated vote if you are moron? And...we should require a competency test for all our legislators. You have to take a test to work for the post office, you should have to take a test to become a congressmen.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:53 am |
    • svann

      The father of genetics, Gregor Mendel, was a christian monk. Sir Isaac newton also was christian. Just to relieve you of some of your ignorance. You're welcome.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • svann

      Oh, and Galileo.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • Renewed Mind

      The Bible does talk about an antichrist in the end times. Whether or not Obama is that person is not really important, because focusing on things like that is not the main point of the Bible. To lump people who believe the Bible along with uneducated people demonstrates your own great ignorance, not only of world history, but also of what the Bible's message is. Name calling does not validate your point and only serves to paint yourself as biggoted and closed minded. Your whole little hate speach blurb there is a moo point. :p

      September 28, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
    • svann

      Speaking of Galileo, its ironic that someone that claims christians believe that the sun revolves around the earth did not know that Galileo was christian. The man who proved that the earth revolves around the sun.

      September 28, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Sid

      svann, at the time, people were persecuted for not being Christian. Galileo included. So no surprise that the scientist of the time were publicly Christian. Privately, not so much, I think. So get over yourself. The world is leaving religion behind, albeit too gradually, and stupid folk like you will get left behind.

      September 28, 2011 at 12:21 pm |
  10. gcs

    The only reason that the (hopefully few) Christians believe Obama is the AntiChrist is because he is black. If he was a white guy nobody would be saying he's the AntiChrist.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • svann

      Thats not true. There were plenty of people willing to call Bush antichrist.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:55 am |
  11. Super Gus

    I'm a Christian and a conservative but believe calling the President the "AntiChrist" is totall uncalled for. As a conservitive tea party member, I support this president 100%. I believe Obama is a good and decent person, as well as a positive roll model. I respect the fact that he is of strong family values. I just disagree with most of his politics and policies. If he fails as the President, so do we as a country, If we fail as a country so does he as the President. The two are not exclusive of one another.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • Cindy

      Gus, that's super. You're well on your way to becoming a decent, reasonable human being. Now all you need to do is leave the Christian hoopla behind.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • William Hopper

      I'm a left-wing liberal, and wanted to say that it's genuinely nice to hear from someone whose opposition lies in politics and policy, while retaining a respect for the common good and the success of the country. Kudos.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:56 am |
  12. The Dancer

    The greatest threat to America is the so-called Christian evangelical movement that is determined to bring about the End Times. They will break every law and moral code available to promote their Taliban-style theocratic aspirations. The efforts to paint their ideological opponents as The Devil, AntiChrist, Hitler, etc. is just part of their neo-con Take No Prisoners philosophy that reduces the universe to zero sum Manichaeanism and Us versus Them-ism. In fact, as a Christian that shares none of their neanderthalish fascist values, I wholeheartedly condemn them as traitorous Satan worshippers that should be deported or jailed.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:46 am |
  13. John Zee

    Yep that's Christianity in a nutshell. A black man becomes President of the United States and the Christian excuse to hate the man is that he's the Antichrist.

    For a religion based upon a man that was so concerned with love for his fellow man and always turning the other cheek, it is a religion that is overloaded with racism, intolerance, and the despising of your fellow man for the most shallowest of reasons.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:46 am |
    • Brian

      Clearly you're passing your athiest views here and don't know anything about Christians. Remember, many African Americans are Christians as well and Evangelicals to boot. Don't make so many generalizations about a group.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:55 am |
    • crying wolf....

      What's wrong in being an anti christ....most of the problem is because of Christianity....now Islam is replicating the tactics Christians used under Vatican....evil must be eradicated..anti christ is the messiah that will give world truth and democracy..free from dictator like pope, Saudi kings, etc....

      September 28, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
  14. James Ruston

    Evangelicals are basically nuts.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:45 am |
  15. See the Light

    Now I know why I received the NRA anti-christ phone message last night. This incident gives them ammunition to go after the Democrats again for gun-control (which has never happened yet). Just waiting for the abortion issue to return since elections will be around the corner. They have to have something to bash the Democrats about because they sure cannot do it when it comes to doing God's work and helping others. Something a Republican "ME ONLY" person would not know anything about.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:44 am |
  16. Knucklehead

    Satan is fooling you....

    Rick Perry is the real Antichrist...and Michelle Bachmann...that yahoo from Arkansas...what's his name? Oh yeah...Huckabee...there's a freaking army of them coming for us... Better stock up on crucifixes and holy water.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:44 am |
    • Bates

      They are vampires too?!?!?!?!?1

      September 28, 2011 at 11:47 am |
    • u r a nutjob

      SERIOUSLY, BACHMANN? SHE IS A WASTE OF FLESH.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:52 am |
  17. xatch

    that is the most stupid idea ever.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:44 am |
  18. Clark Hamilton

    Crusing the tele, came across an interesting and ridiculous silhouette of the "antichrist" from http://www.beyondtoday.tv. To me, it looks a lot like Obama. I remember around the time he got elected, people had mentioned they thought he might be the antichrist. With the next election coming up, maybe this will again be a spin to keep certain people from voting for him. Crazy televangelists!

    September 28, 2011 at 11:43 am |
  19. BubbasWorld

    Hogwash.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:43 am |
  20. svann

    For one thing, he doesnt fit the biblical prophecy. For another thing, if he was the anti-christ you could not do anything about it except run. If you believe in biblical prophecy then the prophecy MUST happen. You could not stop the anti-christ anymore than you could stop judgement day.

    September 28, 2011 at 11:43 am |
    • Ed Galbraith

      "judgment day"? Wish you people would get a life.

      September 28, 2011 at 11:49 am |
    • Sid

      Prove that any bible prophecy with a specific date to it has ever come to pass.

      Your bible is just old goat-herder mythology. Get over it, stupid.

      September 28, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.