Quick to Listen/Episode 101 |51min

On Being an Evangelical Senator During the Trump Presidency

Oklahoma's James Lankford on supporting and criticizing the president, fellowshipping across the aisle, and speaking up for Dreamers.
On Being an Evangelical Senator During the Trump Presidency
Image: Bill Clark / Getty Images

Oklahoma politician James Lankford became a US Senator in 2015, the year before Donald Trump officially became the Republican Party’s candidate. Lankford didn’t support Trump in the GOP primary, but ultimately backed him during the election.

“What I really look for in a presidential candidate is someone who is a great role model, and I didn’t get that this time,” said Lankford. “I was very frustrated. I didn’t have a good option. I didn’t have that person who I would say is a great role model for my daughters and for my family.”

Lankford has served nearly a decade in Washington, DC. Before that, the Southern Baptist thought he had found his calling as a Christian summer camp director. When he decided to make the transition, he found peace about the change in his calling after observing the Bible’s attention to politics.

“There are about 36 and a half books in the Old Testament that are written to, by, or about a political leader. It was often the prophet going to a king, King David writing in a psalm, or Solomon writing in Proverbs,” said Lankford. “A third of the New Testament was written to a political leader: the Book of Luke and the Book of Acts.”

Lankford joined associate digital media producer Morgan Lee and editor in chief Mark Galli to discuss why he started a bipartisan Bible study, what he thinks of the President’s tweets, and why he’s challenging white people when it comes to race.

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Quick to Listen is produced by Morgan Lee, Richard Clark, and Cray Allred

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