Bernie Sanders In The Lion’s Den As He Speaks At A Right Wing Christian College (VIDEO)

Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia, was founded in 1971 by evangelist Jerry Falwell, who also founded the Moral Majority, one of the first major organizations that connected religion with Republican politics. The private school, which is now run by Falwell’s son, says that it offers “a world-class education with a solid Christian foundation, equipping men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for success in every aspect of life.” Liberty will be hosting a guest who may be a little out of the ordinary for them today, as Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders pays a visit.

It will be interesting to see what sort of reaction Sanders gets when he delivers a convocation speech to the students and faculty at Liberty. One thing that even his critics give him credit for is the consistency of his message. So there will probably not be any watering down of any of his positions when he addresses what is likely to be an audience that ranges from indifferent to hostile towards many of his ideas.

According to USA Today, Jerry Falwell Jr., Liberty’s president said:

“I’m still looking hard for something he and I agree on. I’m pretty conservative but I think some of the things he said about the middle class being destroyed in this country, I think that is a problem. He and I may not agree on how to fix that, but I’m open to hearing what he’s got to say.”

For his part, Sanders says that he doesn’t expect to get a lot of support for his positions on things like gay rights, or abortion. But he acknowledges that one of the problems with American politics in recent years is the fact that too many politicians don’t talk to each other any more. Instead, they tend to talk past each other, and to only talk to those of like mind. Sanders wants to change that.

“It’s easy enough to talk to people who agree with you. It’s a lot harder to talk to people who have some fundamental disagreements with you.”

Sanders hopes that he can find some common ground with his audience on issues such as childhood poverty and wealth inequality. Those were, after all, issues that Jesus spoke to. He may find some receptive ears for his message, but it will be interesting to see exactly how many. According to the school, 93 percent of Liberty students supported Mitt Romney for president in 2012.

In this video, Bernie explains what he’s hoping will come out of his visit to Liberty, via USA Today:

Featured image via Marc Nozell/Flickr