Donald Trump’s ability to address issues that are relevant to conservative voters has gained him the evangelical vote, according to current polls.
During an event in Alabama over the weekend, Trump compared himself to the evangelist Billy Graham, saying, "What's my favorite book? The Bible! The Bible. ... We take the Bible all the way."
Although the Alabama crowd only numbered 30,000 attendees and Billy Graham’s last rally had a crowd of 242,000, according to Charisma News, Trump is gaining the loyalty of many evangelicals, similar to the late evangelist.
Trump also vowed to defend Christianity against those who are warring against it, both on American soil and abroad, according to Christian Today.
“There's an assault on anything having to do with Christianity," Trump said. "They don't want to use the word Christmas anymore at department stores."
Trump cited examples of Christian persecution by ISIS in the Middle East and said he will work to end it if elected.
Although polls show that Trump is the leading Republican candidate, even among the evangelical constituency, many are questioning why Trump is so popular with religious conservatives.
Robert Bruni of the New York Times goes so far as to state, “He just about runs the table on the seven deadly sins,” citing Trump’s rudeness on social media, his arrogant attitude toward those who disagree with him, and his boasting in his amassed fortune.
Many, like Bruni, shake their heads over evangelicals’ endorsement of Trump:
“I don’t see someone interested in serving God. I see someone interested in being God,” Bruni stated in regard to Trump.
However, others have stated that perhaps evangelicals embrace Trump’s bluntness as a breath of fresh air from the usual political correctness of politicians.
Trump’s confidence may also be a factor in his popularity.
"This will not be an election based on a nice person. This will be an election based on a competent person,” he reportedly stated, according to Charisma News.
Publication date: August 26, 2015