Live

Watch CBSN Live

Rick Perry told Trump he was chosen by God

Outgoing Energy Secretary Rick Perry says he told the president recently that he was the "chosen one" sent to accomplish God's plan. Perry recalled the conversation in an interview aired partially on "Fox and Friends" over the weekend. 

"God's used imperfect people all through history. King David wasn't perfect. Saul wasn't perfect. Solomon wasn't perfect. And I actually gave the president a little one-pager on those Old Testament kings about a month ago," Perry said in the clip played over the weekend, referencing biblical kings who were accused of everything from adultery to ordering murders.

"And I shared it with him, I said, 'Mr. President, I know there are people that say you know you said you were the chosen one.' And I said, 'you were.' I said, if you're a believing Christian you understand God's plan for the people who rule and judge over us on this planet in our government."

Fox News' Ed Henry, who interviewed Perry, noted Perry also said former President Obama was chosen. 

Perry becomes just the latest to point to Mr. Trump as divinely chosen. Former White House press secretary Sarah Sanders drew headlines in January when she said God "wanted" Mr. Trump to be president.

The comment from Perry touches on a theological divide among Christians — between those who believe God specifically chooses a political leader, like Mr. Trump, and those who believe God knows who the next political leader will be and can use them to further divine purposes, but doesn't necessarily prefer or pick that leader. 

Perry notified Mr. Trump in October that he plans to resign by the end of the year. Perry has said his departure has nothing to do with the Ukraine scandal he has emerged as a player in recent weeks. 

Perry was a rival and critic of the president during the primaries leading up to last year's election. During a speech in Washington in July 2015, Perry said, "Let no one be mistaken - Donald Trump's candidacy is a cancer on conservatism, and it must be clearly diagnosed, excised and discarded."

View CBS News In