Conservative stalwart and director of “2016: Obama’s America” has landed himself in some very hot water. Christian magazine World reported on Tuesday that in late September, D’Souza was joined at a post-speech book-signing table by a young woman who was not his wife, Dixie. He apparently introduced Denise Odie Joseph II to several people as his fiancée:
Finally, near 11 p.m., event organizer Tony Beam escorted D’Souza and Joseph to the nearby Comfort Suites. Beam noted that they checked in together and were apparently sharing a room for the night in the sold-out hotel. The next morning, around 6 a.m., Beam arrived back at the hotel and called up to D’Souza’s room. “We’ll be down in 10 minutes,” D’Souza told Beam. D’Souza and Joseph came down together, and Beam took them to the airport.
The next day another conference organizer, Alex McFarland, distressed by D’Souza’s behavior, confronted him in a telephone conversation. D’Souza admitted he shared a room with his fiancée but said “nothing happened.” When I called D’Souza, he confirmed that he was indeed engaged to Joseph, but did not explain how he could be engaged to one woman while still married to another. When asked when he had filed for divorce from his wife, Dixie, D’Souza answered, “Recently.”
According to San Diego County (Calif.) Superior Court records, D’Souza filed for divorce only on Oct. 4, the day I spoke with him. Under California law, that starts the clock on a six-month waiting period for divorce. D’Souza on Oct. 4 told me his marriage was “over,” said he “is sure Denise is the one for me,” and said he had “done nothing wrong.”
“Done nothing wrong”? Not so fast. D’Souza claims that it never occurred to him that Christianity would frown upon infidelity, emotional or otherwise:
“I asked a lawyer whether there was anything wrong in being engaged while separated but prior to being divorced,” he said. “I was told there’s no problem with that and actually that happens all the time. I proposed to Denise and we became engaged.”
“I believe I have good biblical grounds for divorce and was going through the legitimate process,” said D’Souza. “The thing I will admit: I did not have any idea that it is seen as wrong in Christian circles to be engaged prior to being divorced even though separated. … That was a true error of judgment, but it was truly a case where I didn’t know better.”
“My purpose was to put our relationship on a legitimate and honorable foundation,” said D’Souza. “I’m a college president at King’s and a public figure as a Christian apologist, and I thought it very important that any woman I appear with have a legitimate relationship with me.”
So, his divorce still pending, D’Souza got engaged to another woman. Did he honestly believe that would be seen as acceptable? Not the wisest move. And he’s paying for it dearly.
Yesterday, he issued a response to the World article:
He insisted that he and his wife have been separated for two years and that Marvin Olasky, former King’s College provost and current World editor, is sensationalizing the story in order to get back at him.
Nevertheless, this morning, he resigned from his post as President of King’s College, an evangelical Christian college in Manhattan.
Here is the college’s full statement:
NEW YORK, NY, OCTOBER 18, 2012—The Board of Trustees of The King’s College in New York City has accepted the resignation of its president, Dinesh D’Souza, effective immediately. D’Souza was appointed president of the Christian college in 2010.
Board Chairman Andy Mills stated, “After careful consultation with the Board and with Dinesh, we have accepted his resignation to allow him to attend to his personal and family needs. We thank him for his service and significant contribution to the College over the last two years.”
The Board has asked Andy Mills to assume the position of interim president and will immediately begin a search for the new president. Mills urged the King’s community to pray for Dinesh and his family during this difficult period.
Unsurprisingly, liberals are having a field day:
For many years, D’Souza has been a reliable voice for conservatism and the Christian faith. And, while we clearly don’t share the Left’s glee at his resignation, we are shocked and disappointed by what has happened. He appears to have exercised some poor judgment, and if the affair allegations are true, he must face the consequences of his actions.