Democratic presidential candidate Marianne Williamson posted and then deleted a tweet Wednesday morning that suggested the “power of mind” could deter Hurricane Dorian from slamming into the US.
“The Bahamas, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas…may all be in our prayers now. Millions of us seeing Dorian turn away from land is not a wacky idea; it is a creative use of the power of the mind. Two minutes of prayer, visualization, meditation for those in the way of the storm,” her now-deleted post read.
She replaced the tweet with a post offering prayer for “people of the Bahamas, Florida, Georgia and the Carolinas.”
“May the peace of God be upon them and their hearts be comforted as they endure the storm,” she wrote.
In an email to CNN on Wednesday, Patricia Ewing, a campaign spokeswoman, said Williamson’s original post “was a metaphor” and explained that the tweet was replaced because it “led to confusion.”
She also accused the media of treating the 2020 hopeful unfairly.
“When others speak of prayer and the mind it’s considered profound, but Williamson is held to a different standard,” Ewing wrote.
Though she removed the post, Williamson defended herself against criticism on social media.
In response to a reporter’s screenshot of her original post, Williamson wrote, “Since you obviously want to debunk, counter or mischaracterize anything I do, would you like to have an honest and fair public dialogue? Since I’m neither crazy, irresponsible nor dangerous, I would appreciate the opportunity to counter the caricature.”
Later Wednesday afternoon, Williamson alluded to her comment’s reference to prayer and accused critics on “the overly secularized Left” of ostracizing those who think prayer helps during natural disasters.
“I was born and raised in Texas so I’ve seen it,” she tweeted. “Millions of people today are praying that Dorian turn away from land, and treating those people with mockery or condescension because they believe it could help is part of how the overly secularized Left has lost lots of voters.”
Hurricane Dorian pulverized the Bahamas for two days, leaving the islands in an apocalyptic wreckage and devastating destruction. At least seven people, including an 8-year-old boy, were killed and authorities expect that number to rise.
As of Wednesday morning, Hurricane Dorian remains a category 2 hurricane as it heads toward a possible landfall in the Carolinas. The eye of the storm is about 100 miles off Florida’s east coast, with heavy rain and tropical-storm-force winds pounding the coast. The storm is expected to turn northeast along the US coastline, teeing up what could be devastating flooding Thursday in Charleston, South Carolina.
A spiritual guru and author, Williamson, who announced her campaign in January, has called for a “moral and spiritual awakening” for America and promised to “harness love for political purposes” to defeat President Donald Trump.
Williamson, after appearing in the first two Democratic debates, failed to qualify for September’s debate in Houston. She had reached the fundraising threshold set by the Democratic National Committee, but didn’t meet the polling minimum to qualify.
Williamson was one of the most searched candidates following her debate appearances, but she has drawn controversy for her past comments on vaccines and depression.
CNN’s Keith Allen, Allison Gordon, Holly Yan, Patrick Oppmann, Christina Maxouris and Eric Levenson contributed to this report.