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As Reuters was preparing to publish that story, Falwell issued a statement on Sunday night to the Washington Examiner in which he said Becki Falwell had had an affair with Granda. Becki Falwell did not respond to questions from Reuters. Falwell’s statement did not mention Granda’s allegation of a love triangle and he did not address questions from Reuters about the matter.
In the statement quoted by the Examiner, Falwell said that “Becki had an inappropriate personal relationship with this person, something in which I was not involved.”
Falwell, 58, had taken an indefinite leave of absence earlier this month from Liberty, the school he has run since 2007. The leave, announced in a terse statement from the school’s board of trustees, came days after Falwell posted, then deleted, an Instagram photo of himself with his pants unzipped, standing with his arm around a young woman whose pants were also partly undone.
Falwell later told a local radio station that the picture was meant as a good-natured joke.
Falwell’s departure from that high-profile perch represents a remarkable fall from grace for a man who has been a potent force in American conservative politics. His surprise 2016 endorsement of Trump helped the twice-divorced New Yorker win the Republican nomination for president.
Becki Falwell, 53, is a political figure in her own right. She served on the advisory board of the group Women for Trump, which advocates for the president’s reelection campaign. She also spoke as part of a panel with her husband and Donald Trump Jr at last year’s Conservative Political Action Conference, or CPAC, the signature annual gathering of conservatives. Jerry Falwell and others refer to her as “the first lady of Liberty University.”