Republicans don’t seem to have to worry so much about appearing righteous or pious anymore; especially not when you look at their current scandal dripping candidate. The reason behind this odd shift from holier-than-thou politics to accepting Donald Trump may be exposed in a poll explored by NPR. A shocking 72 percent of white, evangelical voters no longer hold immoral acts against elected officials.
What isn’t clear is if this is in response to Donald Trump becoming the GOP nominee, or if it just made it easier for him to get there.
That’s what a new PRRI/Brookings poll says. In 2011, 30 percent of white evangelicals said that “an elected official who commits an immoral act in their personal life can still behave ethically and fulfill their duties in their public and professional life.” Now, 72 percent say so — a far bigger swing than other religious groups the poll studied.
The other thing that this poll showed that really boggles the mind is that over half of Evangelical voters suddenly don’t think that “strong religious beliefs” are “very important” in a presidential candidate. The number that felt that “strong religious beliefs” were important fell from 64 percent in 2011 to 49 percent this year.
The NPR article makes it clear that this is just one poll, but that it “does suggest a sizable shift in how Americans of several religious stripes,” feel when it comes to morality and politics.
This problem is very apparent when you look into the Evangelical community, even into the largest “Christian” university in the world. The students who still believe that morality is important are rebelling against Jerry Falwell Jr., who has been very vocal with his support for Donald Trump.
Evangelical Christians are far more likely than “unaffiliated” Christians to support Trump. This support comes despite his despicable past. Despite his multiple divorces, his overt cheating, his braggadocious nature, his apparent gluttony, and his assertion he has never asked God for forgiveness (or anyone else for that matter). He has been accused of more than 10 different sexual assaults, the horrible rape and abuse of a 13-year-old girl, and marital rape. He is a known liar, as well as a man who does not honor contracts.
What some Evangelicals have come out against in this election cycle, however, is having a vagina. One pastor stated in a video that, basically, it was worse for a politician to have one that to grab one because God said that women shouldn’t be in “authority over a man.” All of the above immorality pales to the fact that Trump’s opponent is a woman.
It appears that situational ethics, flexibility in the application of moral laws according to circumstances, which has been widely decried by the Evangelical community, has become the norm for Evangelicals. It doesn’t really matter if they have changed because of Donald Trump, or not, he appears to have benefitted from changes in the party that overlook immorality.
So much for the sanctimonious right-wing Christian fundamentalist tripe. They are showing us that it doesn’t matter who the candidate is, as long as they promise to be mean to homosexuals and give lip-service to America as a “Christian nation.” Oh, and they are a man.
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