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When Did Trump Become A Christian

How Donald Trump Became The Most Powerful Religious Leader On The Right

How Trump talks about his faith: God is the ultimate

As Salon’s Kathryn Joyce reported on Friday, Manhattan Institute senior fellow Christopher Rufo, who fashions himself “the new master strategist of the right,” is not a man afraid of the spotlight. On the contrary, he’s surprisingly candid for a man whose policy ambitions, such as destroying public education as we know it, are deeply unpopular. He loves to brag, on social media and into any microphone you’ll put in front of him, of how he cynically concocts baseless moral panics with repeated false claims about everything from “critical race theory” to conspiracy theories about Disney “grooming” children for pedophilia.

But there’s one thing that Rufo is surprisingly mum about: Religious faith.

Turns out that Trump is the most powerful religious right leader of all, precisely because he so obviously isn’t a believer. He created a “secular” cover that allowed the Christian right to hide in plain sight. Now he’s out of office, but the lesson was learned well: The best way to impose theocracy on Americans is to dress it up as a secular movement.

That the QAnon-style conspiracy theories would work better than lots of public praying seems weird at first blush. But it works for one simple reason: The Christian right has terrible branding.

Donald Trump’s Religious Background And The 2016 Presidential Election

Professor of History and Law, Ohio State University

Now that the Republicans are about to nominate Donald Trump as their party’s presidential nominee, a look at his religious background seems in order. It will likely tell us how well he will fare with churchgoing voters, and especially the most committed Christians among them, this fall.

One key factor in this area is generational. American religion has changed a lot over time, and Trump’s generation was a distinctive one in terms of what religion was like when they were growing up. Donald Trump is an “early” baby boomer. Like Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, Trump was born in 1946, the first year of the post-World War II baby boom. Trump grew up in New York City during an era when a higher fraction of Americans engaged in weekly religious observance than at any other time in modern American history.

Trump’s parents were Presbyterians, and they and their five children attended Marble Collegiate Church in lower Manhattan. Donald Trump retained a connection to that church in his adult life. He and his first wife, Ivana, were married there in 1977. Though not currently an active member, Donald Trump has stated publicly that he considers Marble Collegiate to be his church.

The author gratefully acknowledges of the assistance of Reverend Tim Ahrens of First Congregational Church in Columbus, OH and Professor David Brakke of the Ohio State University History Department in preparing this blogpost.

A Rare Exchange About Religion

WASHINGTON In an exclusive interview with Religion News Service, President Trump said in a written statement that he no longer identifies as a Presbyterian and now sees himself as a non-denominational Christian.

Though I was confirmed at a Presbyterian church as a child, I now consider myself to be a non-denominational Christian, Trump, who has repeatedly identified as a Presbyterian in the past, said in a written response to RNS.

Saying that his parents taught me the importance of faith and prayer from a young age, Trump went on to say that Melania and I have gotten to visit some amazing churches and meet with great faith leaders from around the world. During the unprecedented COVID-19 outbreak, I tuned into several virtual church services and know that millions of Americans did the same.

The revelation about Trumps religious identity appeared in an interview that was conducted in writing and covered a variety of faith topics, ranging from the presidents own spiritual life to his plans for the White House office tasked with engaging faith groups.

In this Sept. 1, 2017 file photo, religious leaders pray with President Donald Trump after he signed a proclamation for a national day of prayer to occur on Sunday, Sept. 3, 2017, in the Oval Office of the White House in Washington.

White House staffers said that the answers are attributable to the president.

Read Also: What Time Is President Trump’s Speech Tonight

Trump Once Presbyterian Now Says Hes A Nondenominational Christian

President Donald Trump prepares his offering as he attends church at International Church of Las Vegas, Sunday, Oct. 18, 2020.

Washington In an exclusive interview with Religion News Service, President Donald Trump said in a written statement that he no longer identifies as a Presbyterian and now sees himself as a nondenominational Christian.

Though I was confirmed at a Presbyterian church as a child, I now consider myself to be a nondenominational Christian, Trump, who has repeatedly identified as a Presbyterian in the past, said in a written response to RNS.

Saying that his parents taught me the importance of faith and prayer from a young age, Trump went on to say that Melania and I have gotten to visit some amazing churches and meet with great faith leaders from around the world. During the unprecedented COVID-19 outbreak, I tuned into several virtual church services and know that millions of Americans did the same.

The revelation about Trumps religious identity appeared in an interview that was conducted in writing and covered a variety of faith topics, ranging from the presidents own spiritual life to his plans for the White House office tasked with engaging faith groups.

Questions for the interview, which were first negotiated with the White House press office, were presented to the president by Paula White, a Florida pastor and the head of the White House Faith and Opportunity Initiative, according to the White House.

Approval Ratings And Scholar Surveys

Pope says Trump

Trump was the only president to never reach a 50% approval rating in the Gallup poll dating to 1938. The approval ratings showed a record partisan gap: 88 percent among Republicans, 7 percent among Democrats. Until September 2020, the ratings were unusually stable, reaching a high of 49 percent and a low of 35 percent. Trump finished his term with a record-low approval rating of between 29 percent and 34 percent and a record-low average of 41 percent throughout his presidency.

In Gallup’s annual poll asking Americans to name the man they admire the most, Trump placed second to Obama in 2017 and 2018, tied with Obama for most admired man in 2019, and was named most admired in 2020. Since Gallup started conducting the poll in 1948, Trump is the first elected president not to be named most admired in his first year in office.

Read Also: Why Is Trump’s Approval Rating Going Up

Lafayette Square Protester Removal And Photo Op

On June 1, 2020, federal law enforcement officials used batons, rubber bullets, pepper spray projectiles, stun grenades, and smoke to remove a largely peaceful crowd of protesters from Lafayette Square, outside the White House. Trump then walked to St. John’s Episcopal Church, where protesters had set a small fire the night before he posed for photographs holding a Bible, with senior administration officials later joining him in photos. Trump said on June 3 that the protesters were cleared because “they tried to burn down the church and almost succeeded”, describing the church as “badly hurt”.

Religious leaders condemned the treatment of protesters and the photo opportunity itself. Many retired military leaders and defense officials condemned Trump’s proposal to use the U.S. military against anti-police brutality protesters. The chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, General , later apologized for accompanying Trump on the walk and thereby “creat the perception of the military involved in domestic politics”.

Most Americans Dont See Trump As Religious Fewer Than Half Say They Think Hes Christian

President Donald Trump has often used religious language while in office, and he has surrounded himself with evangelical leaders and supported conservative Christian causes. But Trumps personal religious beliefs and practices have not been as public.

Indeed, half of U.S. adults either say theyre not sure what Trumps religion is or that he has no religion , while just 33% say hes Protestant.

And Americans overall dont think Trump is particularly religious: A majority say Trump is not too or not at all religious, while 28% say hes somewhat religious and only 7% say hes very religious, according to a new Pew Research Center survey.

The findings in this post are drawn from a new survey exploring the intersection of religion and politics in the U.S. The survey of 6,395 U.S. adults was conducted Feb. 4 to 15. All respondents to the survey are part of Pew Research Centers American Trends Panel , an online survey panel that is recruited through national, random sampling of residential addresses. This way nearly all U.S. adults have a chance of selection. The survey is weighted to be representative of the U.S. adult population by gender, race, ethnicity, partisan affiliation, education and other categories. Read more about the ATPs methodology.

Here are the questions used for the report, along with responses, and its methodology.

What is Trumps religion?

Recommended Reading: Who Is Trump’s Personal Lawyer

One Of The Abiding Mysteries Of Contemporary Times Is How A Man Described As A Morally Louche Adulterer With Scarcely A Hint Of Faith Love Or Charity Won The Fealty Of Americas Evangelical Christians

Star Editorial Boardtimer

One of the abiding mysteries of contemporary times is how a man described as a morally louche adulterer with scarcely a hint of faith, love or charity won the fealty of Americas evangelical Christians.

Yet Donald Trump did just that in 2016 even if it was the most cynical of marriages and it carried him to the presidency of the United States.

As Trumps former lawyer/fixer Michael Cohen has written since seeing the light, places of religious worship held absolutely no interest to him and he possessed precisely zero personal piety in his life but he knew the power of religion, and that was the language he could speak.

Everything Trump told evangelicals about himself was untrue, Cohen wrote in his book Disloyal.

He was pro-abortion… He didnt care about religion. Homosexuals, divorce, the breakup of the nuclear family hed say whatever they wanted to hear.

He could lie directly to the faces of some of the most powerful religious leaders in the country and they believed him.

And so a deal was struck: evangelicals laid their hands on Trump and delivered their votes Trump delivered rants about godless liberals and, most important, nominated to the Supreme Court conservative judges who seemed open to revisiting abortion rights.

In 2020, however, Trumps grip on that key sector of the electorate seems to be slipping. Not hugely. But possibly enough to, God willing, humble him.

Not Our Faith is not alone.

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Presidential Campaign And 2011 Hints At Presidential Run

Inside the American Redoubt: Trump voters building a new state | Times Documentaries

In 2000, Trump ran in the California and Michigan primaries for nomination as the Reform Party candidate for the 2000 United States presidential election but withdrew from the race in February 2000. A July 1999 poll matching him against likely Republican nominee George W. Bush and likely Democratic nominee Al Gore showed Trump with seven percent support.

In 2011, Trump speculated about running against President Barack Obama in the 2012 election, making his first speaking appearance at the Conservative Political Action Conference in February 2011 and giving speeches in early primary states. In May 2011, he announced he would not run, and he endorsed Mitt Romney in February 2012. Trump’s presidential ambitions were generally not taken seriously at the time.

Read Also: Do You Approve Of Donald Trump Survey

There Is No Christian Case For Trump

When faith is treated as an instrumentality, its bad for politics and worse for the Christian witness.

About the author: Peter Wehner is a contributing writer at The Atlantic, a senior fellow at the Trinity Forum, and the author of The Death of Politics: How to Heal Our Frayed Republic After Trump.

An editorial last month in the evangelical worlds flagship publication, Christianity Today, argued that Donald Trump should be removed from office.

The editorial, the last one written by the editor in chief Mark Galli before his planned retirement, heartened those evangelicals who have been unsettled by their co-religionists enthusiastic support for Trump. But the editorial upset many others, since white evangelicals constitute arguably the strongest base of support for the president.

Among those who fired back was Wayne Grudem, a distinguished research professor of theology and biblical studies at Phoenix Seminary, in Scottsdale, Arizona. Grudem is hardly a household name, but he is a significant theologian within evangelicalism. A dedicated Calvinist, he has been at the center of many recent theological debates. Grudem, who served as the general editor of the English Standard Version Study Bible, has taught ethics courses in higher education for more than 40 years. Hes the author of several major books.

Grudem ends this portion of his defense of Trump by writing:

Then theres this, by Grudem:

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Donald Trump Is A Christian Can You Believe It Really Can You

When I first read in my news feed that Donald Trump had become a Christian, I chuckled. With Jesus being Middle Eastern and all, I was certain Trump had built a wall around his heart a long time ago to keep him out. Although, there are those on the right who insist, as Fox NewsMegyn Kelly stated, that not only is Jesus white, but the fictitious character of Santa Clause is white, too!

Truth is irrelevant in the game of politics. It’s all about stirring the passion of the people who can get you where you want to go. In Hitler’s Mein Kampf, he said, “All propaganda must be presented in a popular form and must fix its intellectual level so as not to be above the heads of the least intellectual of those to whom it is directed…” Donald Trump is a master at reaching the least of the intellectuals.

Political strategist, Paul Weyrich, also knew this well. It was his decision to involve the untapped fundamentalist Christian right in the mid-60s while working with Barry Goldwater. Goldwater famously denounced the unholy union of politics and religion when he said:

But it’s all good now. He’s a “baby Christian,” according to James Dobson. In the evangelical faith, a mere admission of acceptance of Christ — particularly if you are person in power — and all is forgiven.

After 2016 Bible Slip Trump Lashed Out At So

Jim Wallis Warns Trump Has Become the âMoral Definitionâ of the ...
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By Maggie Haberman and Jonathan Martin

    Furious after he was criticized by evangelicals for stumbling in his reference to a book of the Bible during the 2016 campaign, Donald J. Trump lashed out at so-called Christians and used an epithet in describing them to a party official, according to a new book.

    Mr. Trumps anger was aroused after he stumbled in an appearance at Liberty University by referring to Second Corinthians as Two Corinthians as he was competing for the votes of evangelicals traditionally critical to a Republicans success in the Iowa caucuses with Senator Ted Cruz of Texas.

    Allies of Mr. Cruzs, including Bob Vander Plaats, a well-known evangelical leader in Iowa, seized on the slip-up to taunt Mr. Trump.

    According to a new book, American Carnage: On the Front Lines of the Republican Civil War and the Rise of President Trump, by Tim Alberta, the chief political correspondent for Politico Magazine, Mr. Trump was incensed by Mr. Vander Plaats and others hanging around with Ted, and referred to them in the most vulgar of terms.

    Evangelical voters make up a core constituency for Mr. Trump. Without their support, he would not have won the presidency, his advisers acknowledge. And the president has sought ways to engage those supporters.

    Recommended Reading: What Is Trump Planning To Do

    Trump Says He Now Identifies As A Non

    President Trump, who has long identified as a Presbyterian, now considers himself a non-denominational Christian, a new report said.

    The president shared his change in religious identity in a written interview with the Religious News Service.

    Though I was confirmed at a Presbyterian church as a child, I now consider myself to be a non-denominational Christian, Trump wrote, without giving an explanation for the transformation or saying when it occurred.

    Trump has a loyal base among white evangelicals, who in 2016 helped propel him to victory.

    That year, the religious group made up roughly a quarter of the electorate, and 81 percent of them voted for Trump, according to a report by The Washington Post.

    The president told RNS that his parents taught me the importance of faith and prayer from a young age.

    Trump, who contracted COVID-19 in early October, attributed his swift recovery to his faith.

    I said, There were miracles coming down from heaven. I meant it Melania and I are very thankful to God for looking out for our family and returning us to good health, he told the outlet.

    The president received a cocktail of anti-virus drugs while battling COVID-19. After taking an antibody treatment by drugmaker Regeneron, Trump said he felt like Superman.

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