Presumptive Republican nominee Donald Trump has seen a rise of nine points in his favorability ratings during the month of June among white Protestant Republicans, according to a new Gallup poll, and one evangelical takes a bold stand in a public letter.
Trump favorability rating was 57 percent among the “highly religious” from February to May, but has increased to 66 percent during the month of June.
On Tuesday, June 21, Trump met with almost 1,000 evangelical leaders in New York City to listen to their feedback and answer their questions and concerns. Franklin Graham, Tim Wildmon, Gary Bauer, Gov. Mike Huckabee, Michelle Bachman, Dr. James Dobson, and Jerry Falwell, Jr. were just some of the Christian leaders in attendance.
Other Christians in the “Never Trump” camp were quick to criticize the meeting, labeling it the “end of the Christian Right,” as it if were shameful for their fellow evangelicals to meet with Trump.
Walker Wildmon, of the American Family Association, posted a letter on Thursday, addressing it “To My ‘Never Trump’ Brethren.” Wildmon wrote:
“Simply because evangelical leaders met with a candidate and asked him questions about his positions doesn’t equal the end of the conservative movement. This meeting only shows that there are hundreds of Christian leaders that care enough about our country to try and influence the potential leader of the free world.”
Wildmon chided critical Christians, saying the most negative comments have come from those who weren’t even there to get the facts.
“The gaping hole in the ‘Never Trump’ movement is the complete lack of a plausible alternative if winning the November election is in the equation. No write-in or third party candidate has any chance of winning. Even if there was any hope for that kind of far-fetched win in November that would still not be just cause to denigrate those who choose to engage in dialogue with Trump.
Yet that is exactly what the conservative ‘Never Trump’ folks are doing. They are blasting and shaming anyone and everyone who disagrees with their view of the 2016 election. Along with the public bashing, these fellows are bringing into question the integrity of some of the most trusted evangelical leaders in our country.
It is very telling that they have chosen to zero in on the sins of Donald Trump and impugn the integrity of fellow Christians who were simply seeking answers to their questions about what a possible Trump presidency might look like instead of the prolific and egregious sins of his presumptive Democratic opponent in the November election.”