Mar. 3, 2016 10:04am Billy Hallowell
A meme featuring an old photo of Donald Trump and an apparent quote from 1989 claiming that he’s an atheist has been circulating on social media — but there’s just one problem: Snopes determined that it’s a total fake.
“I have a really high I.Q., Phil, I mean, c’mon,” the quote reads. “It’s impossible for me to not be atheist.”
The quote is attributed to a 1989 episode of “The Phil Donahue Show,” but Snopes noted in a post on Wednesday that the photo of Trump came from an Oprah Winfrey interview, that Trump wasn’t on the Donohue show that year — and that there’s no evidence that the statement is legitimate.
“We found no evidence that Trump uttered this phrase, and no evidence that he even appeared on ‘The Phil Donahue Show’ in 1989,” Snopes explained. “The media mogul was a guest on the show in 1987, but there is no record of him discussing his religious views (or, more accurately, his lack thereof) during that appearance.”
The faux meme comes as Trump — a Presbyterian — has faced criticism surrounding his handling of faith issues, despite gaining the support of many U.S. Christians and evangelicals, in particular.
Despite these stories, though, many pastors have rallied around Trump, though some have also vocally spoken out against endorsing the Republican candidate, citing his oft-times brash tactics and claims.
As TheBlaze reported this week, the Christian Post, a website that describes itself as the largest evangelical news site in the U.S., has, for the first time in its existence, taken a specific editorial position in a presidential race, telling its readers that Donald Trump is “especially bad.”
“We the senior editors of The Christian Post encourage our readers to back away from Donald Trump,” opens an op-ed from the site’s senior editors. “As the most popular evangelical news website in the United States and the world, we feel compelled by our moral responsibility to our readers to make clear that Donald Trump does not represent the interests of evangelicals and would be a dangerous leader for our country.”