US President Donald Trump has done more than any previous president, including George W. Bush, to reach out to evangelicals, says First Baptist Church of Dallas Senior Pastor Robert Jeffress.
Pastor Jeffress was an early supporter of then Republican candidate Trump, stating at one point that while Trump was not an evangelical, “at least he likes us.”
In an interview with The Christian Post, Jeffress, who is a member of Trump’s Evangelical Advisory Board, argued that the Trump campaign and administration has an unprecedented evangelical outreach.
“There’s been no American president in history who has reached out to evangelicals to the extent that President Trump has done,” said Jeffress.
As an example of this, Jeffress recalled an event before the election in which he moderated a discussion between GOP nominee Trump and a group of Catholic and evangelical leaders.
“I asked everybody in the room with the president seated beside me, I said, ‘how many of you were ever invited by Romney, or McCain, or Bush to a meeting like this where you got to openly dialogue with the president?'” noted Jeffress.
“Maybe two raised their hands on one of those presidents. But I said, ‘that tells you something.’ This president has done more, this candidate has done more to reach out to evangelicals than really any president alive and I think that speaks a great deal to President Trump’s interest in what evangelicals think.”
During the 2016 presidential primary season, Trump had a tenuous relationship at times with the Republican Party’s evangelical voting bloc.
As Trump secured the Republican nomination, a growing number of evangelicals rallied to his side, if nothing else but to see him as a better alternative to Democratic Party opponent Hillary Clinton.
Some, including bestselling Christian author Philip Yancey, expressed surprise at the amount of support Trump had within the evangelical community.