In the context of a world where an utterly incompetent federal response has resulted in a rapidly climbing body count from a pandemic that is completely out of control, and also protests in the streets demanding racial justice, and even the tear-gassing of peaceful protesters simply for a propaganda photo op, you have to wonder who is still seriously rolling with “Yep, this is my guy, this is the man I want in charge”.
Survey Results – Approval
Roughly seven-in-ten white evangelical Protestants (72%) say they approve of the way Trump is handling his job … but …. the share of white evangelicals who say they “very strongly” approve of Trump’s performance is now at 59%, down 8 points from 67% in April.
Here is how the survey results pan out over time and across the various religious groups …
Where will the Votes Go?
Quite independent of the approval rating is where votes will go. Often people don’t approve of a candidate, but they will still hold their nose and vote that way because they perceive the alternative as even worse.
In response to the question “If the election where held today, who would you vote for?” we find different numbers.
82% of white evangelical Protestant registered voters would vote for Trump or lean toward voting for him, while 17% say they would back the Democratic Party’s presumptive nominee, Joe Biden.
Back in 2016 77% of white evangelical Protestant voters backed Trump.
Here is how the numbers for this question panned out …
This of course is just one poll and is at best an indication of which way the political wind is blowing at a point in time.
The reality is that most of the polls, like this one, do reveal that Biden will probably win, but it is not a done deal, there is still a great deal of support for Trump.
It truly makes no rational sense
Just how delusional to you have to be to seriously embrace the idea that Biden would be poor or terrible, but Trump would be fine.
It should perhaps not surprise us. We have already seen that no amount of pussy grabbing mattered, and so why should anything else that has happened change minds?
What it does of course do is point to what is coming in the months ahead. He needs those evangelical votes, so he will continue to lie to them and pander to them, and they will continue to lap it all up.
Is this adoration for Trump utter stupidity?
I recently covered this, but it is worth repeating.
Consider for a moment what we have seen.
- When they saw a man who had owned a fraudulent University, intent on scamming poor people, they thought “Fine.”
- When they saw a man who had made it his business practice to stiff his creditors, they said, “Okay.” (https://thedailybeast.com/trump-hotel-paid-millions-in-fines-for-unpaid-work…)
- When they heard him proudly brag about his own history of sexual abuse, they said, “No problem.” (https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/list-trumps-accusers-allegations-sexual-misconduct/story?id=51956410…)
- When he made up stories about seeing Muslim-Americans in the thousands cheering the destruction of the World Trade Center, they said, “Not an issue.” (https://washingtonpost.com/news/fact-checker/wp/2015/11/22/donald-trumps-outrageous-claim-that-thousands-of-new-jersey-muslims-celebrated-the-911-attacks/…)
- When they saw him brag that he could shoot a man on Fifth Avenue and they wouldn’t care, they exclaimed, “He sure knows me.” (https://usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/10/23/president-donald-trump-could-shoot-someone-without-prosecution/4073405002/…)
- When they saw him mock the disabled, they thought it was the funniest thing they ever saw. (https://nbcnews.com/politics/2016-election/donald-trump-criticized-after-he-appears-mock-reporter-serge-kovaleski-n470016…)
- When they heard him brag that he doesn’t read books, they said, “Well, who has time?” (https://theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/01/americas-first-post-text-president/549794/…)
- When the Central Park Five were compensated as innocent men convicted of a crime they didn’t commit, and he angrily said that they should still be in prison, they said, “That makes sense.” (https://usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2019/06/19/what-trump-has-said-central-park-five/1501321001/…)
- When they heard him tell his supporters to beat up protesters and that he would hire attorneys, they thought, “Yes!” (https://latimes.com/politics/la-na-trump-campaign-protests-20160313-story.html…)
- When they heard him tell one rally to confiscate a man’s coat before throwing him out into the freezing cold, they said, “What a great guy!” (https://independent.co.uk/news/people/donald-trump-orders-protesters-coat-is-confiscated-and-he-is-sent-into-the-cold-a6802756.html…)
- They have watched the parade of neo-Nazis and white supremacists with whom he curries favor, while refusing to condemn outright Nazis, and they have said, “Thumbs up!” (https://theatlantic.com/politics/archive/2018/08/why-cant-trump-just-condemn-nazis/567320/…)
- They hear him unable to talk to foreign dignitaries without insulting their countries and demanding that they praise his electoral win, they said, “That’s the way I want my President to be.” (https://huffpost.com/entry/trump-insult-foreign-countries-leaders_n_59dd2769e4b0b26332e76d57…)
- They have watched him remove expertise from all layers of government in favor of people who make money off of eliminating protections in the industries they’re supposed to be regulating and they have said, “What a genius!” (https://politico.com/agenda/story/2017/12/29/138-trump-policy-changes-2017-000603…)
- They have heard him continue to profit from his businesses, in part by leveraging his position as President, to the point of overcharging the Secret Service for space in the properties he owns, and they have said, “That’s smart!” (https://usnews.com/opinion/articles/2018-03-05/how-is-donald-trump-profiting-from-the-presidency-let-us-count-the-ways…)
- They have heard him say that it was difficult to help Puerto Rico because it was in the middle of water and they have said, “That makes sense.” (https://washingtonpost.com/news/politics/wp/2017/09/26/the-very-big-ocean-between-here-and-puerto-rico-is-not-a-perfect-excuse-for-a-lack-of-aid/…)
- They have seen him start fights with every country from Canada to New Zealand while praising Russia and quote, “falling in love” with the dictator of North Korea, and they have said, “That’s statesmanship!” (https://cnn.com/2019/07/02/politics/donald-trump-dictators-kim-jong-un-vladimir-putin/index.html…)
- That Trump separated children from their families and put them in cages, managed to lose track of 1500 kids, has opened a tent city incarceration camp in the desert in Texas – he explains that they’re just “animals” – and they say, “Well, OK then.” (https://nbcnews.com/news/us-news/more-5-400-children-split-border-according-new-count-n1071791…)
- That they have witnessed all the corruption and lacking moral character, rudeness and contempt for the working American voter, and they still show up grinning and wearing their MAGA hats and threatening to beat up anybody who says otherwise. (https://americanprogress.org/issues/democracy/reports/2018/06/04/451570/confronting-cost-trumps-corruption-american-families/…)
What they don’t get is that our succumbing to frustration, thinking of them as stupid, may very well be wrong, but it’s also…hear me…charitable. Because if they are NOT stupid, we must turn to other explanations, and most of them are less flattering.
(Hat tip to Ryan Shead for the above)