In 2016, Trump won Wisconsin by 23,000 votes. According to the Public Religion Research Institute, white evangelicals make-up 17% of the state’s population. Trump needs to win these evangelicals in order to win the state again.
Jess Bidgood of the Boston Globe talked to Wisconsin evangelicals. Here is a taste of her piece “Trump’s evangelical support mystifies his critics, but in Wisconsin, it looks stronger than ever.”
Here is a taste of her piece:
NEW LONDON, Wis.—After it was clear that neither of her preferred candidates, Ben Carson and Ted Cruz, was going to be elected president in 2016, Linda Behm prayed.
Behm is an evangelical Christian and keeps a calendar filled with volunteer shifts at a thrift store and a food pantry in this small community an hour away from Green Bay. She wasn’t sure about supporting Donald J. Trump, the New York business magnate with a penchant for insults and crude behavior. But after asking God whether she should back him or Democrat Hillary Clinton in the general election, she decided Trump was the lesser of two evils.
These days, Behm, 69, finds the president to be coarse and exasperating, especially his tweets — and she took issue with his summertime missive urging four Democratic congresswoman of color to “go back” to other countries.
“We should be treating them like Christ should treat them,” Behm said. “Trump has to figure that out.”
But still, she feels better than ever about her decision to vote for the president, because she thinks he has delivered on the two issues she cares most about: curtailing abortion rights and protecting Israel. Behm expects to vote for Trump again in 2020.
“He’s our only choice,” she said.
In 2016, Trump’s alliance with white evangelical voters was obvious — 80 percent of white, self-identified born-again or evangelical Christians supported him, according to exit polls — but, for some of those voters, it was also uneasy. The president’s personal behavior and some of his core political beliefs, including his hostility toward refugees, seem at odds with the major moral tenets of Christianity. What’s more, many of his evangelical supporters weren’t exactly sure what they were getting from a nominee who was neither deeply religious nor a lifelong Republican and who described himself some years ago as “very pro-choice.”
Read the rest here.