OXFORD — Former football coach Tommy Tuberville, who was elected a United States senator in Alabama last week, told a pre-election gathering of Republicans that “I do believe God sent us, and elected, Donald Trump.”

It’s understandable that Tuberville, who coached at Ole Miss, Auburn, Texas Tech and Cincinnati before going into politics, considers President Trump a personal blessing.

He rode the soon-to-be former president’s coattails to victory in the general election, as any Republican nominee would have done this year in Alabama — or Mississippi for that matter.

But it was in the Republican primary that Trump helped the most.

Tuberville ran against and defeated former popular U.S. Sen. Jeff Sessions who, four years ago, gave up his Senate seat to become Trump’s attorney general.

He then earned Trump’s enmity and retribution for recusing himself in the investigation into possible Russian interference in the 2016 presidential campaign instead of protecting Trump’s interests.

Never mind that Sessions helped Trump secure the Republican nomination for president in 2016. Back then Sessions was a tea party favorite whose early endorsement of Trump helped validate the New York City billionaire with the conservative grassroots.

But Trump is short on the forgiving spirit taught by Jesus in the New Testament.

Despite his habitual behavior contrary to that preached in The Sermon on the Mount, many Christians agree with Tuberville in the belief that God put Trump in office.

I don’t disagree.

But if you’re going to assert that God ordained the presidency of Donald Trump, it stands to reason you’ve got to give God the credit for removing him from office come January.

It’ll be interesting to see how successful Coach Tuberville will be as Sen. Tuberville.

He was a good football coach with an overall winning record everywhere he was head coach.

At Ole Miss, he won despite taking over a program that was on probation and short on scholarships. He was popular in Oxford until he went to Auburn shortly after saying the only way he would leave Ole Miss would be in “a pine box.”

So he may not be a paragon of honesty, but that’s not a requirement in politics. He’ll fit in OK on that quality, or lack thereof.

Kyle Whitmire, a political commentator and columnist for the Alabama Media Group, wrote a piece addressed to Tuberville in which he pointed out some pitfalls Tuberville needs to watch for when he gets to Washington.

One of them is to avoid falling into Ponzi schemes, which he has done in the past.

“I’m not trying to beat you up all over again, but you have to beware — you haven’t been the best judge of character in the past and you need to do better in the future,” Whitmire wrote.

“Because the folks you’re about to meet, they aren’t small-time con artists like (David) Stroud. Nor are they hapless former coaches trying to turn millions into millions more — like former UGA coach Jim Donnan, who got you to invest in yet another get-rich-quick scheme.

“They’re lobbyists. They’re professionals. They know where the lines are, but they won’t care if you cross them.

“You might have won a big victory Tuesday night, but Washington charm is undefeated.”

Charles M. Dunagin is the retired editor and publisher of the Enterprise-Journal in McComb. He lives in Oxford.

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