Quick to Listen/Episode 30 |47min

Trump Tape Forces Deeper Conversations on Evangelical Ethics

Purity teachings, abortion, Hillary Clinton, and what really matters to American Christians in 2016.
Trump Tape Forces Deeper Conversations on Evangelical Ethics
Image: Photo by Washington Post / Getty

By now, you’ve probably seen the 2005 video of Donald Trump bragging to then–Access Hollywood’s Billy Bush about his aggressive groping and kissing of women.

If you’re running for election as a Republican, it may have encouraged you to change your strategy. (Arizona Senator John McCain dropped his endorsement. GOP House Leader Paul Ryan has said he’ll stop campaigning for Trump.)

But so far, Trump’s most vocal evangelical supporters—including James Dobson, Eric Metaxas, Tony Perkins, and Jerry Falwell—haven’t wavered in their support. (Read CT’s full report.)

“The whole thing is baffling yet predictable,” said Jemar Tisby, the president and co-founder of the Reformed African American Network.

While allegations of Trump’s previous sexual attacks on women currently make the news, his campaign won the primary while proposing a ban on Muslims from entering the US and attacking a Mexican-American judge for his heritage, actions indicative of a larger thread in Republican history, said Tisby.

“That Donald Trump, out of 16 candidates, would end up being the nominee is on one hand utterly perplexing. On the other hand it doesn’t surprise me in the sense that what he’s playing to what has been present in the GOP for decades,” he said.

But will this be true in the future?

“I’ve seen a lot of people want to say ‘The Religious Right is finished. They don’t have the clout that they had,’” said Matthew Lee Anderson, the founder of Mere Orthodoxy. “I think that it’s way too premature to say that sort of thing. We do need a couple of election cycles…One of the things that I will watch very ...

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