Take a good look at that pic, evangelical Trumpsters, because that's Donald Trump's idea of a man of the cloth.
Not that y'all will, of course. As Fred Barnes of the Weekly Standard wrote yesterday:
A focus group of Trumpies on Monday night in Alexandria, Virginia, was just that—quite revealing. It was organized by Frank Luntz, Mr. Focus Group himself. He’s conducted more than a thousand of them. Yet he was at times surprised by how the gang of twenty-nine—seventeen women, twelve men—talked about Trump.
They view Trump as different from all the other presidential candidates. He’s not just their favorite candidate. Their tie to him is almost mystical. He’s a kind of political savior, someone who says what they think. [emphasis added]
Does that sound eerily familiar? It ought to, because it's the same idolatrous fever that gripped the Left and Center in 2008 regarding Barack Obama. He was a "light-bringer," he was a "messiah" with Mosaic powers to "lower the seas" and "cool the planet" and....
Well, let's climb in the Wayback Machine and revisit the infamously drivelous Mark Morford piece from the San Francisco Chronicle:
Many spiritually advanced people I know (not coweringly religious, mind you, but deeply spiritual) identify Obama as a Lightworker, that rare kind of attuned being who has the ability to lead us not merely to new foreign policies or health care plans or whatnot, but who can actually help usher in a new way of being on the planet, of relating and connecting and engaging with this bizarre earthly experiment. These kinds of people actually help us evolve. They are philosophers and peacemakers of a very high order, and they speak not just to reason or emotion, but to the soul. [emphases added]
O would be the "great post-partisan/post-racial uniter," O was "the one we'd been waiting for," O was the "blank screen on which we could project our hopes and dreams," O "looked like America," etc., etc. etc.....
....so much so that nobody bothered to vet him, nobody bothered to find out anything about him, and thus nobody knew or cared about his Islamic Fundamentalist childhood or his radical and divisive Marxist-Alinskyist adolescence and young adulthood or his unAmerican communizing activities or his launch into elective politics by two prominent members of the old communist Weather Underground. All of that was ignored, all his swoon-inducing stump speech horse manure was proclaimed, well, "Gospel," and he ascended to what quickly and usurpatiously become total power.
How's that turned out for us?
And you know what, evangelical Trumpsters? You morons are even worse. You know why? Because while "independents" sure as shootin' got fooled in 2008, lefties didn't. They knew that Obama was one of them. But Trump isn't one of you.
Remember this story from only five weeks ago?
But for the actual voters who were in the room when Trump spoke to the Family Leadership Summit in Ames, Iowa, Saturday, it's possible Trump's greater sin has nothing to do with McCain. Instead, Trump's casual and disengaged characterization of religious faith may have made a far worse impression on the mostly evangelical conservatives who came to hear Trump and other Republican hopefuls speak.
If a candidate wants to make a good impression on religious voters in Iowa, he probably should not offer the answer Trump gave when moderator Frank Luntz asked whether Trump had ever asked God for forgiveness. "I am not sure I have," Trump said. "I just go on and try to do a better job from there. I don't think so. I think if I do something wrong, I think, I just try and make it right. I don't bring God into that picture. I don't."
A candidate who seeks to make a good impression should also probably refrain from describing Holy Communion in the way Trump did: "When I drink my little wine — which is about the only wine I drink — and have my little cracker, I guess that is a form of asking for forgiveness, and I do that as often as possible because I feel cleansed. I think in terms of 'let's go on and let's make it right.'"
A senior Iowa Republican who was in the room, sitting with a group of grassroots activists as Trump spoke, was dumbfounded by the candidate's views of religion. "While there were audible groans in the crowd when Trump questioned whether McCain was a war hero," the senior Republican said via email, "it was Trump's inability to articulate any coherent relationship with God or demonstrate the role faith plays in his life that really sucked the oxygen out of the room.."
The senior Republican continued: "Milling around talking to activists in the hallways/lobby after Trump's speech, THAT is what those Iowa conservatives were discussing, not the McCain comment."
New York Times reporters Jonathan Martin and Alan Rappeport noticed the same thing: "It was these comments, not his attack on Mr. McCain, that prompted the most muttering and unease in the audience." Attendees told the Times that Trump's casual use of the words "damn" and "hell" made a bad impression. "I was turned off at the very start because I didn't like his language,'' one woman who had been considering supporting Trump told the paper. Admitting he never asks God's forgiveness didn't help. ''He sounds like he isn't really a born-again Christian," the woman added. [emphases added]
And let's not forget that Trump is, in his words, "very pro-[abortion]," and the pro-life con he's running is precisely that:
After a week of silence, Trump finally voiced calculated outrage over revelations of Planned Parenthood’s secret baby organ racket. Given Trump’s history on the issue of abortion, the pro-life community shouldn’t fall for the Donald’s latest con....
Instead of immediately decrying the institutionalized slaughter and sale of innocent, healthy, and viable unborn babies, Donald Trump waited seven days to gauge which way the political winds would blow. He shouldn’t just be embarrassed that it took so long for him to predict the fall out. He should be ashamed.
There are few moments in politics that unmistakably cut black and white. The piecemeal auction of dead babies is one of them. That’s why the majority of the GOP presidential field quickly decried the practice the day the first ghastly Planned Parenthood video dropped.
Former Texas Governor Rick Perry called it “disturbing.” Jeb Bush tweeted that it was “shocking.” [Wisconsin Governor Scott] Walker expressed “horror,” and the rest of the candidates quickly followed suit. Trump, however, didn’t say a word. Now that the nation has expressed viral disgust, now that there’s no political risk, Trump has decided to shop around his pro-life pedigree. Conservatives should acknowledge that Trump is “a total phony” and recognize him as a “loser.” [emphases added]
This is the guy that his Kool-Aid-swilling followers call a "leader".
But are they - even evangelicals - acknowledging Trump as a "total phony" and recognizing him as a "loser"? You be the judge:
Evangelical Christian support for GOP presidential front-runner Donald Trump shouldn't surprise anyone, says Family Research Council President Tony Perkins.
"Evangelical voters are more complex than people give them credit for," Perkins said Thursday on Fox News Channel's The Kelly File.
"They don't vote just for who goes to church on Sunday. They vote for someone who they feel confident will lead this nation forward."
And what about Trump's background and issue stances up until the past two months gives any evangelical voter any confidence that he would "lead this nation forward"? Heck, "forward" in the current context means a continuation of authoritarian Obamunism, does it not?
Trump's popularity over other candidates such as Mike Huckabee, who is an ordained Baptist minister, or multiple others who tout their faith, including Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Ben Carson, Rick Santorum, Bobby Jindal or John Kasich, is the result of voter anger, he said.
All emotion, no reason. All heart, no brain. The perfect combination for exploitation by a skilled demagogue with ulterior motives.
"Donald Trump is the result of a Republican leadership here in Washington, D.C. that has been playing political footsies with Barack Obama rather than fisticuffs," Perkins said. "People are tired of it, and that includes evangelicals."
Calm down your emotions and reboot your brains and you would realize that the Republican leadership in Washington, D.C. has not be "playing footsies" with Barack Obama, they've been functioning within the institutional boundaries of our constitutional system - which, if you'll recall, is constructed to make wild swings in policy direction exceedingly difficult, something lefties understand a lot better than Tea Partiers do, apparently - as well as the perverse constraints of what is politically possible (themselves borne of the last round of "mystical messiahnism" seven year ago). Or, put another way, Republicans are not revolutionaries, and Democrats are. A counter-revolution is what is needed, but there aren't any counter-revolutionaries out there. That's not the GOP's fault. That's simply the political reality. Barack Obama's "fundamental transformation" has been carried out easily "under the radar" of an ignorant, anesthetized public incapable of realizing what's being done to it or the need for a counter-revolution, and highly unpersuadable of and apathetically indifferent to such a need by its eagerness to believe everything The One tells them. A suicidal orgy of rage from a tiny minority is not going to change that, but rather lay the groundwork for something even worse.
And THAT is what Donald Trump actually represents. Which y'all would realize if you'd all stop and breathe into paper bags for a few minutes.
Trump is promising action over lip service, he said.
But what "action" can we expect if what comes out of his lips contradicts everything the man previously stood for?
And then comes this perfunctory, almost gratuitously intelligence-insulting caveat:
Whether Trump delivers on that and continues his conversation with evangelicals and corrects some of his miscommunication or mixed signals he's been sending is yet to be seen, Perkins said.
Well, golly gee whiz, Tony, why didn't you throw out all of your "lip service" before that sentence and just go with that? It might have saved you this well-deserved spanking.
As I discussed on the podcast this afternoon, Donald Trump is the Republican Obama. The difference being that in this case, his followers not only don't care that he, unlike The One, is ideologically opposed to everything they've claimed to believe in, but they are evidently eager to heave overboard everything they've claimed to believe in in order to follow him....somewhere. An exercise in blind faith.
As Jim Geraghty wrote in today's Morning Jolt e-newsletter, "Jesus isn’t coming back just to run for president."
Exit quote from Matthew 24:23-28:
Then if anyone says to you, ‘Behold, here is the Christ,’ or ‘There He is,’ do not believe him. For false Christs and false prophets will arise and will show great signs and wonders, so as to mislead, if possible, even the elect. Behold, I have told you in advance. So if they say to you, ‘Behold, He is in the wilderness,’ do not go out, or, ‘Behold, He is in the inner rooms,’ do not believe them. For just as the lightning comes from the east and flashes even to the west, so will the coming of the Son of Man be. Wherever the corpse is, there the vultures will gather. [emphasis added]