Half of Pastors Approve of Trump’s Performance, but Generational Gap Remains

Michael Foust | ChristianHeadlines.com Contributor | Monday, October 15, 2018
Half of Pastors Approve of Trump’s Performance, but Generational Gap Remains

Half of Pastors Approve of Trump’s Performance, but Generational Gap Remains


A slight majority of Protestant pastors approve of President Trump’s job performance, although there is a difference in support between younger and older pastors, according to a new poll.

The LifeWay Research survey of 1,000 pastors was released Oct. 11 and shows 51 percent of Protestant pastors approve of Trump’s job performance, while 28 percent disapprove and 20 percent aren’t sure. 

“After almost two years of actions and statements from the White House, most pastors likely consider some positive and others negative,” said Scott McConnell, executive director of LifeWay Research.

“When asked to evaluate the president’s job performance with no neutral option, most pastors approve.”

Among younger pastors (ages 18-44), 41 percent approve of Trump’s job performance. That number jumps to 56 percent among pastors 45 years old and older. 

Young pastors, McConnell said, are “less tied to traditional political identities and remain slow to express approval of President Trump.”

Only 4 percent of African-American pastors approve of Trump’s job performance, compared to 85 percent who disapprove. 

The survey also found that:

  • Pastors of churches “with less than 50 in attendance are the least likely to approve of President Trump’s job performance (42 percent).”
  • Pastors in the South (55 percent) and West (57 percent) support Trump more so than those in the Northeast (40 percent).
  • Self-identified evangelical pastors (63 percent) “are more likely to approve” of Trump than self-identified mainline pastors (41 percent).

A significant minority of pastors (20 percent), McConnell said, refused to either approve or disapprove.

“There is no lack of information on what President Trump is doing or how he is doing it,” McConnell said, “so the undecided posture appears to be an unwillingness to identify with either of the political sides that have emerged in American politics.”

Michael Foust is a freelance writer. Visit his blog, MichaelFoust.com.

Photo courtesy: Getty Images/Spencer Platt/Staff

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