FlashPoint Victory Channel GOP

Andrea Austria/Media Matters

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Ahead of 2024, Republican politicians are appearing on the Victory Channel’s FlashPoint, a show helmed by Christian nationalist “prophets” who warn of “demonic influence”

Donald Trump to FlashPoint’s host: “You do a great job and I appreciate it. And we're with you 1,000%.”

As Christian nationalism gains influence in the Republican Party, right-wing Christian TV network the Victory Channel’s FlashPoint has emerged as a show where pro-Trump “prophets” warn of “spiritual war,” as well as a friendly platform for prominent GOP officials and candidates to spread political misinformation. FlashPoint advocates imposing fundamentalist Christian values on American society, frames opponents as “demonic entities,” and spreads vitriol about LGBTQ people and abortion by claiming they are “demonic.” 

  • The Victory Channel promotes Christian nationalist and apocalyptic rhetoric on its panel program FlashPoint

    • The Victory Channel was founded in 2015 by televangelist and ardent Trump ally Kenneth Copeland when “God brought a new idea … to build a faith-based Christian television network unlike any other.” The Victory Channel broadcasts its content through DirecTV, Facebook, Rumble, and other social media platforms, and its website states that its content “is available to all cable systems in the United States at no cost.”
    • Copeland is a proponent of “dominionism,” which asserts that Christians have been called by God to impose fundamentalist values on every aspect of society. He also has a history of hateful anti-LGBTQ rhetoric, such as conflating being gay with “murder” and “stealing.”
    • FlashPoint was launched on the Victory Channel in September 2020, after “Copeland was led by the Lord to provide programming on VICTORY to address current issues in our government and the 2020 elections from a biblical perspective.” After the election was called for President Joe Biden, pro-Trump pastors provided “prophetic updates” on the show suggesting that God would keep former President Donald Trump in office and feverishly propagated Trump’s lies about voter fraud. After the attack on the Capitol on January 6, 2021, FlashPoint was an early purveyor of the conspiracy theory that anti-fascist protesters — not Trump and his supporters — had instigated the violence. Due to the show’s “overwhelming popularity and the current political climate,” FlashPoint became a permanent panel-style program that airs twice weekly and is helmed by a now-regular panel of so-called “prophets” and “apostles.” 
    • FlashPoint pledges to provide “commentary on current issues from a conservative and prophetic viewpoint” — and Gene Bailey, FlashPoint’s host who is also a pastor at Copeland’s church, has been “unabashed” about embracing the “Christian nationalist” label. At a FlashPoint Live event earlier this year, Bailey said that the show is “to the right of center. You won't find us in the center or in the middle. We do have an agenda, and that is I am a Christo-fascist, Christian nationalist.”
    • Experts have noted that Christian nationalism — which has been on the rise in the GOP and right-wing media — played a role in inspiring violence during the January 6 insurrection. Violence on that day was in part the result of apocalyptic rhetoric and calls to “Stop the Steal” from pro-Trump “prophets” and “apostles” — including FlashPoint commentators Lance Wallnau and William “Dutch” Sheets. Since January 6, Christian nationalism and talk of “spiritual war” have continued to grow in the Republican Party, and several of FlashPoint’s “prophet” contributors even took a leading role on the 2022 midterm campaign trail. 
    • Flashpoint has received glowing endorsements from prominent Republicans including Trump and Rep. Lauren Boebert (R-CO). The program has also attracted prominent conservative media figures as guests, including Turning Point USA founder Charlie Kirk, Fox News host Jeanine Pirro, former Trump national security adviser Michael Flynn, former Trump strategist Steve Bannon, BlazeTV founder Glenn Beck, and anti-LGBTQ shill Chaya Raichik
  • FlashPoint is a key platform for a “prophetic” Christian nationalist movement that frames political opponents as demons waging spiritual war

  • Ahead of the 2024 elections, right-wing media figures and Republican politicians have created a dangerous political atmosphere by adopting apocalyptic language about “demonic” influence and “spiritual war,” framing that stems from an increasingly influential right-wing Christian movement known as the New Apostolic Reformation. For years, the NAR movement has promoted a form of dominionism and sought to impose fundamentalist Christian values “over politics, business and culture in preparation for the end times and the return of Jesus.” In a profile of one of the movement’s leading figures, “prophet” and FlashPoint commentator Lance Wallnau, Rolling Stone described the NAR belief that political enemies are literal “demons” engaged in a “spiritual war”:

  • Wallnau is a leading figure in the New Apostolic Reformation, or NAR, whose followers believe that we are living in an age of new apostles and prophets, who receive direct revelations from God. NAR believers hold that the second coming of Jesus is fast approaching, and that it is the destiny of Christians is to accelerate the End Times by exerting “dominion” over the world. Wallnau is best known for popularizing a quasi-biblical blueprint for theocracy called the Seven Mountains Mandate.

    NAR followers like Wallnau believe that America is specially anointed by God to project Christianity across the globe. And the NAR movement’s followers view foes of their quest as satanic. This is not metaphorical. They hold that the physical world is enveloped by a supernatural dimension, featuring warring angels and demons, and are convinced that demons afflict their enemies on behalf of the devil.

  • The NAR movement's worldview is apparent on FlashPoint — not only does the show feature some of the movement’s leading “prophets” and “apostles” as contributors, but a producer has also used specific NAR terminology of the “fivefold ministry” to describe the show. FlashPoint producer Jason Smith said that when the panel is discussing current events, “the show itself becomes apostolic and becomes the fivefold ministry in action,” and Wallnau claimed that when the “prophets” are talking, “what you have is the mind of Christ revealed in that segment.”

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    Citation From an August 2, 2021, video on The Victory Channel's YouTube account

  • FlashPoint’s “prophetic” personalities analyze political developments in the context of a “demonic spin cycle”

  • FlashPoint promises to help viewers “discover how prophecy & current events are aligning to usher in the greatest awakening the world has ever known.” These are FlashPoint’s pro-Trump “prophets” who are fixtures of the show:

    • Wallnau is a self-proclaimed “prophet” and “Christian nationalist” who falsely prophesied Trump would win the 2020 election. He has been dubbed the “father of American Dominionism” for authoring the movement’s “quasi-biblical blueprint for theocracy called the Seven Mountains Mandate.” A leading figure in the NAR movement who sometimes speaks in tongues, Wallnau has an extensively documented history of extreme and violent rhetoric. In the last several months, he has warned that God may soon start killing those who are “persecuting” Trump and called Biden the “antichrist," telling FlashPoint’s audience, “You don’t deal with current events, you deal with a demonic spin cycle."
    • William “Dutch” Sheets is a longstanding leader and considered to be an “apostle” in the NAR movement seeking to transform America into a Christian theocracy. Sheets was a loud supporter of Trump’s efforts to overturn the 2020 election and was reportedly at the White House in the days ahead of the January 6 insurrection. Sheets made headlines last year when he prayed over Rep. Marjorie Taylor Greene (R-GA) at a FlashPoint Live event and insisted she was “covered in the blood of Jesus.” Sheets also has a history of violent language and has preached against the acceptance of Muslims and Hindus.
    • Hank Kunneman is a self-proclaimed “prophet” and pastor who repeatedly and falsely prophesied that Trump would win in 2020 and now claims there is a “spiritual bounty by the hand of God” against those who stole the election. Kunneman also said last year that Biden should be in prison for “treason” and a “demonic agenda” and that he was potentially replaced by a demon.
    • Mario Murillo is a “prophet” and was a regular contributor on FlashPoint until earlier this year, when he announced that he would stop regularly appearing as a panelist due to “false prophets.” Murillo maintains close ties to other FlashPoint personalities and has continued holding tour events with Wallnau seeking to break “demonic strongholds” supposedly preventing the GOP from winning elections. 
  • FlashPoint’s host and guests frame their political opponents as “demonic entities” and embrace Christian nationalism

    • Kunneman suggested that people who support the movement for trans rights are “demonic entities.” Kunneman said that “we don't wrestle against flesh and blood, but principalities, powers, spiritual wickedness in high places, you know, demonic entities,” and “that’s why we’ve got to keep speaking out against critical race theory, we’ve got to keep speaking out against gender mutilation and transgender.”
    • Bailey agreed that the church must be the “epicenter of everything,” while regular panelist Rick Green claimed that “to preserve the constitutional republic, the Founding Fathers said you can only do that if faith was infused into everything.” Green is a former Texas state representative who has sought to dismantle the separation between church and state for years and now leads Patriot Academy — an initiative of Christian nationalist activist David Barton’s group WallBuilders — which seeks to “train citizens to understand and influence government policy with a Biblical worldview.” During the panel discussion, Kunneman declared that scripture should be society’s “moral standard” and that the “separation of church and state really was that God wanted the church to affect the state, not the state coming and trying to control the affairs of the church.”
    • Wallnau gave the FlashPoint audience an overview of his “Seven Mountain Mandate,” which calls on right-wing Christians to take over all aspects of society. “Thirty percent of the population is Christian,” Wallnau lamented. “How is it the 30 percent are dominated by 3 percent?” He claimed, “They changed the definition of marriage, so they’ve taken over family. They’ve totally taken over academia, so the education institutions are teaching leftist theology or leftist ideology and silencing conservatives. They’re controlling government right now. They’ve taken over legacy media, Hollywood, entertainment and the arts. And now they’ve got Wall Street.” 
    • Sheets called on God to send angels to bring “sweeping victory in the state of Arizona” in the midterm elections. On the FlashPoint Live stage, Sheets said, “Lord, give us angelic hosts. Many of them. To go to work for us. Send Michael if you have to. Do whatever it takes to stop any cheating, any lying, anything that the enemy would do to steal this."
    • Bailey called the separation of church and state “a lie” and claimed that “the church should infect the state.” Bailey told a FlashPoint Live event audience that, “You and I have been fed a lie for decades that says the church and state shouldn’t be together. No, what Jefferson wrote was the state should not infect the church, the church should infect the state.” 
    • Appearing on FlashPoint, Salem Radio’s Eric Metaxas called Biden’s election a “satanic usurpation.” During a panel discussion, Metaxas vowed never to accept the 2020 election results, likening it to moving on from someone having “raped and killed somebody I love.”
    • Sheets led Bailey, Wallnau, Kunneman, and the FlashPoint Live crowd in reciting the “Watchman’s Decree,” asserting that “We, the Church, are God’s governing Body on the Earth.” FlashPoint’s personalities and audience recited the Watchman Decree, which was co-authored by Sheets, asserting that “we have been given legal power and authority from Heaven” and “delegated by Him to destroy every attempted advance of the enemy.”
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    Citation From a July 1, 2022, FlashPoint Live event in Atlanta, Georgia 

    • Former Rep. Michele Bachmann (R-MN), who has repeatedly been a FlashPoint guest, claimed that the term “Christian nationalist” was “coined by those on the progressive left” to make “toxic anyone who takes the Bible seriously at its word and anyone who loves the country, and then they want to apply the Bible to the way that America lives.” Bailey responded by saying that the church needs “to grow a backbone and stand up. And, you know, I'm like, yes, I'm a Christian. And yes, what she said, I believe in the United States of America, and I stand for that based on biblical values. Guilty as charged.” During the segment, Bailey also agreed with right-wing pastor and frequent FlashPoint guest Tony Suarez that we’re engaged in “spiritual warfare,” and “on Earth, you’ve got to fight it with your vote and your voice.” 
    • Trinity Broadcasting Network host Kirk Cameron said that God “was given all authority, both in heaven and on Earth,” and promoted making a “disciple of all nations” for Christianity. Cameron, who is a repeat guest on FlashPoint, said the audience must “apply the word of God not only to our hearts and our homes, but to our churches, the marketplace, and civil government.” 
    • Wallnau and Bailey endorsed the “precinct strategy” to take over and “occupy” school boards to “termite the devil down, state by state.” Wallnau directed the audience to “PrecinctStrategy.com” and said, “We’ve got to flood these precincts so that elections don't get stolen and we're going to have to move to the school boards, take them over. Every state we're now going to begin to occupy till he comes. And we're going to begin to kind of like termite the devil down, state by state.” Bailey responded that “we do have to do exactly all that, and so you can see it’s a multipronged effort that we’ve got to stay engaged.” (The precinct strategy to take over local government has also been championed by Bannon and QAnon supporters.) 
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    Citation From the June 28, 2022, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • FlashPoint personalities “prophesied” natural disasters in response to Trump’s criminal indictments and said there’s an “anointing” on him

  • In reaction to Trump’s indictment for potentially mishandling classified documents, Kunneman “prophesied” natural disasters and said that God will kill people soon. Speaking to a FlashPoint Live event audience, Kunneman said, “God is doing this on purpose. He is allowing them to sit there and bring indictments against an innocent man, a man that has been anointed for this time so that God can raise up something in the people that will be a righteous rebellion.” Responding later to a news story that noted FlashPoint personalities had claimed God will kill Trump’s opponents, Kunneman said, “I didn't say that. God said it in his word,” adding to “p​ay attention where the Earth's soil shakes, even in you, United States.”

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    Citation From the June 8, 2023, FlashPoint Live event in New Albany, Ohio

    • Claiming God would cause the indictments to fail, Kunneman said there’s an “anointing” on Trump that “brings a certain preservation.” Kunneman said: “Here's how it's going to turn out. God said all of these indictments are like these feathers, and we're going to watch them just begin to fall because there's something on President Trump that the enemy fears. It's called the anointing. And when the anointing is there on a person, it brings a certain preservation. And as long as we the people pray like in Luke 18 and we have faith, we're going to see things turn around. We’re going to see a great reversal and a great reset come to our country.”
    • While condemning the indictment of Trump for allegedly falsifying business records related to hush money payments he made to an adult film actress, Sheets said that the left “will be judged” by God and “he is about to act.” Sheets called the indictment “a battle against the purposes of God,” and complained that “the left, the antichrist crowd,” is “open about their intentions: the border, kids — mutilating them, indoctrinating them, taking them from parents — the transgender issues, the pro-life. They are out in the open now, and that says to me that their arrogance has reached the point where now they will be judged. … I would just say God is weighing all of these actions and he is about to act.”
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    Citation From the April 4, 2023, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • FlashPoint spreads hatred about LGBTQ people, claiming that they are possessed by “Satan” and “death in the pot” of American culture


    Wallnau said that the high suicide rate among transgender people “isn't because society doesn't affirm them,” but because “a demon comes along that enters into that confusion that affirms that they are the opposite gender” and causes “a suicidal psychological breakdown.” Wallnau complained that acceptance of gay people “created a culture where people are sympathetic with evil rather than discerning evil,” lamenting that the “original problem of homosexuality has metastasized into the queer and transgender manifestation.”

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    Citation From the March 28, 2023, edition of The Victory Channel's Flashpoint 

    • Bailey suggested that “demonic influence … has got to the point where people really think a man can have a baby.” Bailey’s guest, anti-abortion activist Abby Johnson, responded by suggesting being trans is a “sin” caused by “Satan.”
    • FlashPoint condemned Trump for hosting a pro-gay Republican group at his Mar-a-Lago resort, with Bailey saying, “Log Cabin Republicans is gays for Republicans. … Obviously, we don't support that. We don't believe that.” “If we organized and were as aggressive at getting into media and entertainment and business and HR departments as the gays are, then we would have leverage, too,” Wallnau ranted. He added that Christians need to be “militant” and claimed that Trump hosting the event at Mar-a-Lago represented how Christians are losing the "battle for influence.” 
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    Citation From the January 3, 2023, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • Kunneman said that taking children to a LGBTQ Pride parade is “exposing them to a form of pedophilia,” demanded to know “where is the law enforcement,” and complained that “these people get 30 days to display, basically, their arrogance and their pride, their sin, their perversion.” During a panel discussion on Pride Month, Green said “this LGBTQ agenda” is “sick,” and Wallnau said that “Sodom and Gomorrah manifests its pride and its agenda” of “coming for your children.” Kunneman said that “God is going to step in and there is a sexual revolution that is going to come in reverse,” and that the church needs to act as “the measuring stick of morality according to God and biblical truth.” 

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    Citation From the June 27, 2023, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

    • Metaxas said there’s “evil afoot in the land” and “we in the United States need the churches to be speaking out — the transgender lunacy is at the heart of it.” Metaxas said, “In the 1930s, the silence of the German church led to the death camps.” 
    • Wallnau likened LGBTQ people to “death in the pot” of American culture. “The good news … 80% of America is repulsed by aggressive transgender manipulation, chemical castration and perversion or grooming of their children,” Wallnau said, claiming that God is “bringing America to the point where the sons of the prophets were when they were tasting the soup and said there’s death in the pot. America's tasting something that is so bad that they're actually going to be driven to look for a redemptive solution. God's using the depravity of culture to create a contrast between beliefs.” 
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    Citation From the May 23, 2023, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • Right-wing pastor Jack Hibbs said that pastors should not affirm transgender people in their church because “transgenderism, just like adultery, … is a sin and it needs to be repented of.” Bailey said pastors are asking, “What do I do with this transgender issue?” Hibbs said they should reject trans people, saying that “I think we're doing people a great disservice and a great injury when we pat people on the back and say, 'Well, I love you. Do whatever you want.’”

  • FlashPoint spreads baseless lies about abortion, claiming it is “demonically inspired” and “a holocaust” that makes “Nazi Germany look like Girl Scouts”

    • Turning Point USA Faith co-chair and right-wing pastor Rob McCoy said that abortion is “a holocaust” and that abortion services in California make “Nazi Germany look like Girl Scouts.” McCoy said: “It's a holocaust in the Black community. And people are waking up to this and realizing here in California, we are an abortion destination where we don't just rip the baby apart in the womb of its mother and then flush its parts into the sewer system. We harvest the organs before we do that. And so people are just starting to realize this is making, like I've said before, Nazi Germany look like Girl Scouts.” 
    • Murillo said it was “demonically inspired” and part of “spiritual warfare” for the Biden administration to consider providing financial resources for women to seek abortions in neighboring states. While celebrating the overturning of Roe, Murillo said the Biden administration plans “to give people vouchers to go and kill their baby. … It's demonically inspired. It is spiritual warfare. And we can defeat it by prayer, the power of God, and preaching the gospel without apology and without any kind of weakness or stepping back. We've got to do it forcefully.”
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    Citation From the June 28, 2022, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • FlashPoint celebrated the Supreme Court ruling that overturned the legal right to abortion, with Wallnau saying that those protesting the decision were a “demonic manifestation.” Wallnau claimed: “I now realize that when the devil is mad, God is glad. And a lot of the time the political mechanism is such that when you see the left having a meltdown and getting hysterical, it’s maybe because God is actually taking ground back. You’re looking at a demonic manifestation.” 

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    Citation From the June 28, 2022, edition of The Victory Channel's FlashPoint 

  • Johnson said that “the pro-abortion agenda and the LGBT movement fit hand-in-hand because they are both profoundly anti-life and they are both profoundly anti-God.” “They’re both symptoms of the same root,” Johnson claimed, adding that “the root of the problem is the destruction of the family, which is really the destruction of the image of Jesus Christ.” 

  • Trump and other Republican politicians have developed close relationships with FlashPoint amid rising Christian nationalism

    • As Christian nationalism’s influence grows in the GOP, Trump has developed a deep connection with FlashPoint — conducting at least six interviews with the show between September 2021 and May 2023. In the interviews, Trump lavished praise on the show and its host while bragging about his accomplishments for conservative Christians. Other elected Republicans at the state and local level have also associated with FlashPoint.
    • In his first interview on the show in September 2021, Trump praised Bailey and claimed that “nobody has done more for Christianity or for evangelicals or for religion itself than I have.” Trump told Bailey: “You are a great man and everybody respects you and respects your voice. And I am one of them. I'm at the top of the list. So I just want to tell you, thank you very much for everything you've done. We've had tremendous success with exactly what you do, and it's an honor to have helped.”
    • In a December 2, 2021, phone interview, Trump said that then-House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) “is crazy” and “very bad for Christianity, for evangelicals," and hyped the end of Roe. In the 10-minute interview, Trump again touted “the great success that we've had for evangelicals and everybody else and all religions.” He also told the host that he was hearing “you and a lot of people that are listening right now will be happy” about the pending Dobbs decision that was set to be announced the following summer, and wished Victory Channel founder Kenneth Copeland a happy birthday, calling him “a fantastic man.” 
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    Citation December 2, 2021, edition of The Victory Channel's Flashpoint 

  • Trump conducted his first in-person interview for FlashPoint at a Turning Point USA conference at the end of December 2021 and praised Bailey when he said the show refers to Biden as “illegitimate Joe.” Trump said that “I knew I liked you” when Bailey falsely asserted that the 2020 election was stolen. Trump also complained that the media pointed out his embrace of Russian President Vladimir Putin, saying, “They say he loves Russia. He loves Russia. And I did. I get along great with Putin.”

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    Citation From the December 21, 2021, edition of The Victory Channel's Flashpoint

  • Trump called into FlashPoint to seemingly counterprogram a House January 6 committee hearing in June 2022, telling Bailey, “You do a great job and I appreciate it. And we're with you 1,000%.” Trump slammed the hearing and the investigation into the January 6 attack on the Capitol as a “continuation” of the “Russia, Russia, Russia hoax” that is “so disgraceful to our country.” 

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    Citation From the June 16, 2022, edition of The Victory Channel's Flashpoint 

  • Trump claimed in an October 2022 phone interview that evangelical Christians have been “treated unbelievably badly” by the Biden administration and told Bailey, “You're a highly respected man, and it's an honor to do your show again.” Trump also claimed that other countries are “emptying out” their prison populations and sending them to the U.S. and falsely claimed the 2020 election was “rigged and it was stolen.”

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    Citation From the October 20, 2022, FlashPoint Live event in Phoenix, Arizona

  • During an on-camera interview that aired on May 2, Trump told Bailey that Christianity “is being hit much harder than any other religion,” and pledged to permanently end restrictions against churches weighing in on politics in a second term. Trump said he would have ended such restrictions but “unfortunately we had a horrible election. Horrible. Just horrible what happened, like a Third World country, we had a Third World country election and bad things happened and I wasn't able to finish it, but I'll finish it this time. … The people I want to hear from are essentially not allowed to speak. I want to hear from you.”

  • Trump and Gene Bailey at mar-a-Lago
  • Boebert endorsed the Victory Channel as “where you’re going to get unfiltered truth” and has appeared on FlashPoint at least seven times since April 2021. In a video posted to the Victory Channel’s Twitter account, Boebert said that the channel “is where the church is getting equipped from their living rooms” and encouraged people to watch to “get wisdom from people who love God and serve God.”

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    Citation From a March 3, 2022, post from the Victory Channel on Twitter 

  • Failed 2022 Arizona Republican gubernatorial nominee Kari Lake has appeared on FlashPoint at least four times and told its host, “I’m glad to come on your show any time.” Lake, who has still not conceded her election, recently used FlashPoint to promote her baseless claims of election fraud, declaring: “We're coming at it with our fists up. We're in a battle right now. And I just ask for the FlashPoint army out there to pray for me, pray for these judges that we find somebody with courage.” (At a FlashPoint Live event in Phoenix ahead of the 2022 election, the show’s personalities prayed over Lake that God would deliver her a victory.) 

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    Citation From the October 21, 2022, FlashPoint Live event in Phoenix, Arizona

  • Various Oklahoma elected officials attended an April 2022 FlashPoint Live event, including Rep. Kevin Hern (R-OK), and state Attorney General John O’Connor. Per Right Wing Watch, Bailey opened the event by recognizing the officials in attendance, including “multiple state senators and representatives, as well as various members of law enforcement and local elected leaders.” 

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    Citation From an April 21, 2022, FlashPoint Live event in Tulsa, Oklahoma 

  • Sen. Josh Hawley (R-MO), Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, and Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) have also appeared on FlashPoint. Vivek Ramaswamy, a candidate in the 2024 Republican Presidential primary, is slated to appear on FlashPoint on July 18, 2023.