"William Barr, Official Portrait" by DOJ is licensed under Public Domain

Barr and Pompeo Speeches Show Why Evangelical Warriors Won’t Abandon the President

Oct 23, 2019

By Bradley Onishi

One of the questions over the past couple of weeks has been whether or not white evangelicals would break with President Trump in reaction to his decision to abandon the Kurdish people in Syria. Elizabeth Dias wrote a piece at the New York Times that outlined how prominent evangelical leaders such as Franklin Graham, Pat Robertson, Tony Perkins, and Erik Erikson all criticized the president’s policy change. Her question was a familiar one: Is this enough to cause white evangelicals finally to stop supporting Trump?

The threat was serious enough for the president to make a last-minute speech at the Values Voter Summit in Washington D.C. last weekend. For a man who often seems to operate according to instinct more than strategy, this was a calculated move. He needed to shore up his support among his most devoted base. In his speech, the president explained his policy change in Turkey and Syria as a choice to bring home American troops.

“I don’t think our soldiers should be there for the next 50 years guarding a border between Turkey and Syria when we can’t guard our own borders at home,” Trump said. “I don’t think so.”

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