Politicians, faith leaders react to passing of Billy Graham
© Getty Images

Politicians and faith leaders across the country reacted Wednesday to the death of 99-year-old evangelical icon Billy Graham on Wednesday. 

President TrumpDonald John TrumpRepublicans consider skipping witnesses in Trump impeachment trial Bombshell Afghanistan report bolsters calls for end to 'forever wars' Lawmakers dismiss Chinese retaliatory threat to US tech MORE and Vice President Pence, who is an evangelical, both put out tweets praising Graham's work as a televangelist and reverend. 

First lady Melania TrumpMelania TrumpFirst lady lends a hand to 'Toys for Tots' charity drive The Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by UANI — GOP, Democrats square off at final impeachment hearing The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - A crucial week on impeachment MORE praised Graham's "impactful life."

Graham was known for being one of the first televangelists.

Prominent evangelical Christians, including members of Trump's evangelical advisory board, also expressed their condolences following Graham's death. 

“Today, the most influential evangelist in modern history, Rev. Billy Graham, stepped into the corridors of eternity. He preached the Gospel, lived with integrity and changed the world. I will never stop being grateful for the impact he has had on my life. May his death, as in life, point all people to the cross of Jesus Christ and His glorious Gospel," Hispanic Evangelical leader Dr. Samuel Rodriguez said in a statement.  

Graham's son Franklin Graham, an outspoken conservative and an ardent supporter of the president, honored his father's work as a pastor on Tuesday.  

Graham served as an adviser to numerous presidents, including former Presidents Truman, Nixon and Obama. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"Broadminded, forgiving, and humble in his treatment of others, he exemplified the life of Jesus Christ by constantly reaching out for opportunities to serve. He had an enormous influence on my own spiritual life, and I was pleased to count Reverend Graham as one of my advisors and friends," former President Carter said in a statement. 

Former President George H. W. Bush praised Graham's legacy in a statement, calling him "America's pastor."

"I think Billy touched the hearts of not only Christians but people of all faiths because he was such a good man," Bush said. 

Lawmakers, governors, candidates and other members of the U.S. political community also remembered and honored Graham's legacy. 

ADVERTISEMENT

"In 1979, my first year as governor, he invited me to play the piano at the Billy Graham Crusade in Nashville. He took a considerable risk in doing that, but it is an experience I will always remember," Sen. Lamar AlexanderAndrew (Lamar) Lamar AlexanderImpeachment surprise: Bills Congress could actually pass in 2020 Overnight Health Care — Presented by That's Medicaid — Deal on surprise medical bills faces obstacles | House GOP unveils rival drug pricing measure ahead of Pelosi vote | Justices to hear case over billions in ObamaCare payments Obstacles remain for deal on surprise medical bills MORE (R-Tenn.) said in a statement. 

"One of the finest moments of my career was having the opportunity to represent Reverend Graham when his Montreat home was placed in the 10th district. The personal kindness and hospitality Reverend Graham showed when inviting me into his home is something I will never forget," Rep. Patrick McHenryPatrick Timothy McHenryMnuchin expresses concerns about proposed taxes on financial trades Fed's top regulator takes heat from both parties NC rep explores Tillis primary challenge MORE (R-N.C.) said.