SIX MONTHS AFTER The Christian Post broke tradition and officially took a fervent editorial stance during the primaries against Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump, the evangelical news outlet is once again speaking out.
The Christian Post’s original editorial titled, “Donald Trump Is a Scam. Evangelical Voters Should Back Away,” made it clear that the outlet wanted Christians to avoid the GOP contender at all costs.
The op-ed, which was released while there were still other Republican options available to voters, was unprecedented, considering that the news site had never endorsed — or come out so fervently against — a candidate before.
But with the political winds now changing and with Trump now officially the definitive GOP nominee, The Christian Post followed the editorial up with a new op-ed published on Wednesday, titled, “‘Crooked Hillary’ vs. ‘Scam Artist Trump’: What’s an Evangelical Voter to Do?”
While the story showers no accolades upon Trump, it does take a relatively different tone when compared to the preceding story.
“During the Republican nominating contests, we, the editors of The Christian Post, encouraged Evangelicals to back away from Donald Trump. It was the first time we had taken a position on a political candidate,” the piece reads. “Given Trump’s claims that he speaks for and represents the interests of Evangelicals, we thought it was important to take a position during the primaries, given Trump’s potentially fatal flaws.”
The editors went on to say that they, like many other evangelicals, are divided on whether to support Trump in the general election, though they said that there are no plans for the outlet to offer an official endorsement.
That said, the editors did unveil a number of considerations that they implored Christians to consider. To begin, The Christian Post believes that “Evangelicals should not vote for Hillary Clinton.”
The rationale, according to the outlet, is that “she supports taxpayer-funded abortion for any reason until the moment of birth” — a stance that they believe disqualifies her among the faithful. The outlet also pointed to her handling of a private email server and purported lies over the years as additional concerns.
The editors also took aim at third-party candidates Gary Johnson of the Libertarian Party and Jill Stein of the Green Party, poking at Johnson’s views on religious liberty and Stein’s perspective on the economy and abortion, among other issues.
Based on the current situation, the editors of The Christian Post came to the following conclusion: “We believe the only options evangelicals should consider are to vote for Trump or to cast a protest ballot.”
To back this ideal, they cited Trump’s pledge to deliver conservative Supreme Court nominees as well as his promise to overturn the Johnson Amendment, an Internal Revenue Service provision that the Deseret News has explored in-depth.
The Christian Post did note, however, that these proclamations change nothing about the editors’ opinions of Trump, saying that he has “questionable moral character” and has demeaned women and minorities in the past. Additionally, his past language and purported lies also made the outlet’s list of grievances.
“Trump is entirely unprepared to fulfill the duties of president — he’s ignorant about basic economics and foreign policy; he has professed affinity for President Vladimir Putin, who seeks to restrict the religious freedom of Russian Christians, who invaded Ukraine and supports war criminal Syrian President Bashar al-Assad,” the outlet continued.
But in the end, The Christian Post reminded readers that it’s either Trump or Clinton come November, acknowledging that it’s a difficult situation.
“Evangelicals who state publicly their support for Trump should only do so with a high degree of consternation in their voice, noting that the only reason they’re voting for a person who is so singularly inappropriate for the office is that the alternative is so much worse,” the editorial proclaims.
Read the editorial here.
There’s been no shortage of debate among evangelical leaders about support for Trump, despite polling last month that showed nearly 80 percent of white evangelicals planned to vote for the Republican nominee.
Still, the American public remains largely dissatisfied with both Clinton and Trump, with polls reflecting large proportions of the public expressing dislike for both major party candidates.
Back in May, 47 percent of voters said they wouldn’t mind a third-party candidate if Trump and Clinton were the contenders. And two months later, a July poll from the Washington Post and ABC News found that 58 percent of voters said they didn’t like the two choices.
Despite many Americans’ dislike for their options for president, Clinton is now up by nearly 8 percentage points in the Real Clear Politics polling average. Deseret News