Senator John Ensign’s Devestating Public Admission

senator-john-ensign-sin-and-grace
Nevada Senator John Ensign admits he had an affair.  This admission has created a wave of disappointment among many Americans and certainly among family, but his announcement also has broken the hearts of many of his good friends, including me.  His affair has devastating consequences, many of which will be unfolding in the months ahead.

Earlier I wrote on this blog how Senator Ensign was a man of integrity with traditional values and the only politician I truly respected on the national scene.

While at Nellis AFB, I began working with prisoners to help them rehabilitate themselves, and I eventually left the military after four years to become the Prison Fellowship Ministries Area Director of Nevada and Utah.  It was a great experience for a year, and I did see many lives transformed.

At that time there was a young man who was a veterinarian in Las Vegas, and he became the Chairman of my Prison Fellowship Board of Directors for Nevada and Utah.  We had many great planning sessions, and he played a major role in helping to establish the weekend seminars and all of our prison work.  I got to know him well enough to know that he was a man of deep convictions and traditional values.  He was very loyal and definitely a man of integrity.

One morning we were having breakfast, and he told me he was thinking of getting into politics by running for Congress.  I queried him, “That’s interesting, but you’ve never even been on the local city council.  To run for Congress your first time out and to win would be an extraordinary miracle.”  He admitted it would be, and we talked about it.  He planned on talking with Chuck Colson, our boss at Prison Fellowship Ministries, because Chuck knew politics and had friends who might offer wise counsel.

That was back in about 1993.  Today John is the esteemed Senator John Ensign from the great state of Nevada.  I haven’t talked to him since I left Nevada in 1994, but I can testify that John is without question a man of integrity, and in truth, he is the only man in national politics I trust without hesitation.  I miss talking to John.  He’s the kind of person you grow to love and appreciate.

It was at that breakfast that I asked John this question, “John, if you get elected, what about all the compromise that goes on in Washington.  It seems like every politician starts compromising the truth after he gets elected.”

John looked at me across the table at this Las Vegas IHOP restaurant and said, “I will never compromise the truth.  Never.”

I knew John was telling me from his heart that he intended never to compromise the truth in politics and in the matters that our nation holds sacred, but I remember as though it were yesterday not feeling confident that a man, even John Ensign, could go to Washington and not compromise.

I do not doubt that John kept the vows of his oath of office, but my friend compromised the most sacred of vows, the vows he took to his wife and to God.  It’s one thing when a vulgar politician commits adultery in Washington.  That probably happens every day of the week.  But when a man of great religious faith commits adultery, the consequences shake the foundation of the earth, especially someone who plays such an important public role as John Ensign.

I, and millions like me, are deeply disappointed in the man.  Can we forgive John?  Yes, I certainly can and have.  Do I have confidence in him as the man to be our next president?  No.  He has lost my confidence, and I’m sure that many of his friends feel as I do–John has breached a sacred trust.

If you have not seen his admission, here is the vido replay.

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