Evangelical Support for Trump is Divided After Video Leak

Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0

Top Evangelical leaders have criticized Trump for his lewd comments on women while others like Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell still stand with him.

Republican nominee Donald Trump will need to brace himself for some tough times ahead. Just when he had managed to get evangelical Americans on his side, a leaked video has changed everything. The video clip shows Trump making 'misogynistic' and vulgar comments on women. Top Evangelical leaders, particularly women, were shocked and threatened to withdraw their support for Trump.

In the video, Trump can be heard making lewd comments about how he used his fame to seduce women. Trump bragged about his ability to sexually assault any woman of his choice because women cannot refuse a star. He described incidents where he 'groped' and 'kissed' women forcibly. He even bragged about trying to sleep with a married woman.

These comments have not gone well with evangelical leaders. A member of his own evangelical council, James MacDonald, the pastor of megachurch Harvest Bible Chapel, heavily criticized him. The pastor, through a sharply worded email, described Trump's comments as “misogynistic trash,” and revealed him to be a “lecherous and worthless” person. MacDonald made it clear: unless Trump has a “change of heart,” he will withdraw all support.

Female evangelicals like Beth Moore were particularly bitter about Trump's remarks. Evangelical figures like Sara Groves, Christine Caine, Katelyn Beaty, and Moore herself spoke about how they themselves have been victims of sexual abuse. They expressed their sorrow that male Evangelicals are still ignoring this harsh reality by continuing to support Trump. As of now, they believe that a number of Evangelical leaders are simply aiming for political gains rather than spiritual fulfillment.

The disappointment of women evangelicals is not without reason. Male evangelists like televangelist like Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell Jr., president of Liberty University, said they will continue supporting Trump. They believe Trump's words are just “locker-room” banter. Robertson defended Trump comments as someone trying to look “macho,” and claimed the remarks made over ten years ago do not reflect the man he is today.

Whether he has changed or not, the clip has been successful in dividing the evangelicals on their support for Trump.

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