WASHINGTON (CNN) -- In remarks at Bob Jones University in 1999, John Ashcroft, now attorney general-designee, told a commencement audience that "America is different. We have no king but Jesus."
"When you have no king but Jesus, you release the eternal, you release the highest and best, you release virtue, you release potential," continued Ashcroft, who was a U.S. Senator from Missouri at the time.
Ashcroft, speaking after receiving an honorary degree, said, "Unique among the nations, America recognized the source of our character as being godly and eternal, not being civic and temporal."
Bob Jones University, in Greenville, South Carolina, is a college known for its strict religious academic and social programs. Activists opposed to Ashcroft's nomination are using the former senator's speech there as proof that he would not uphold certain civil rights and abortion laws. ...