I'm reading about more and more former people like Erick Erickson. They were once Never-Trumpers, but they would vote for him in 2020 if he runs again. What's changing their minds?
I too once opposed Donald Trump. I didn't like his past. I didn't trust his intentions. His character, to me, was highly suspect.
I had no idea what he really believed or stood for. And I certainly questioned if his outreach to evangelical Christian leaders was sincere. Wasn't he just using them, as others had in the past?
To be totally honest, I had actually forgotten just how deeply I disliked him when he was a Republican primary candidate. But when editing my new book on Trump, which includes 90 Trump-related articles from August 2015 to August 2018, I realized just how much of a problem I used to have with this highly controversial figure.
You see, most of us remember the past through the filter of the present. It's like the man who says to his wife after 30 years of marriage, "I want a divorce. The truth is, I never really loved you."
His present attitude has clearly distorted the facts of the past.
It was the same with Donald Trump and me. It was only while re-reading my articles written about him during the primaries that I remembered just how much I did not want to see him win.
And, to be brutally honest, since I had endorsed Ted Cruz, and Trump was his main opposition, on some level, even subconsciously, I must have looked at Trump as the competitor. So, just like you root for your home team and against the opposition, I rooted for Cruz and against Trump.
How did I go from that attitude to rooting for him and voting for him? How is it that today, despite my ongoing concerns about some of the president's message and methods, I'm hoping for a red wave in the midterms? (For the record, I'm registered as an Independent but consistently vote Republican, especially because of key social issues.)
Let's think about what is changing the minds of some formerly Never-Trumpers:
- The Kavanaugh hearings revealed just how intense and ugly the opposition can be.
- The Democrat-inspired mobocracy is deeply disturbing.
- The radicality of the pro-abortion movement has been unveiled for all to see, along with the radicality of the extreme feminist movement.
- The outright hostility of the left-wing media has revealed their depth of antipathy, not just to Trump but to conservative values in general.
- The emergence of die-hard socialist candidates has made our choices starker.
- It's even increasingly hard to deny that some kind of "deep state" exists.
On the positive side, Trump has done a great job with the economy. He is doing better against ISIS and Islamic terrorism. He has proven to be a true friend to Israel. He has made some positive progress with hostile countries. He is absolutely keeping his promises about Supreme Court and Federal Court nominees. And he has proven sincere in his commitment to stand with evangelical Christians.
In my case, there were several factors that led to a change of thinking, all of which can be followed in the chronological reprinting of the 90 aforementioned articles included in my book.
First, I always said that if it was Trump vs. Hillary, I would reevaluate my opposition to him.
Second, prophetic words from friends of mine saying that God had raised up Trump like a Cyrus-type figure (a foreign king who was not a worshipper of Yahweh) had me asking the whole time, "Am I wrong here?"
Third, the fact that he struck a chord with so many Americans got my attention.
Fourth, the fact that he beat so many fine Republican candidates suggested strongly to me that there was a supernatural wind in his sails.
Fifth, close friends of mine who were respected evangelical leaders spent lots of time with him and assured me that he was open and listening.
Sixth, his positions became more consistent, leading me to believe (or, at least) hope, that he would keep his word, hence my vote for him.
Now, during his presidency, while I certainly do not support his every word and deed, I must say he is doing the things I hoped he would do if elected.
Would it be great if he would be a good role model too? Absolutely.
Do I often wish he could unify more people behind him? Certainly.
But am I glad I voted for him? Without a doubt.
And, as I've often said, if it were Trump vs. Hillary today, I'd vote for him without any hesitation.
Perhaps this analogy will prove helpful.
There are a bunch of pit bulls with rabies terrorizing a neighborhood and biting the children. But there is no town dogcatcher, and kids are suffering and dying.
Two candidates emerge.
One is the nicest guy in the world. He's happily married with great kids, and you'll never hear a foul word from him. But he can't even catch a fly. The guy is hopeless.
The other candidate is as nasty as they come. His three ex-wives hate him. He curses like a drunken sailor. But the guy can catch a dog with his teeth.
For whom would you vote?
That's where many formerly Never-Trumpers are today. The stakes are that high, and he's the man for the job. A great role model would be a wonderful plus. It's just not in the cards right now.
So, let's keep standing with President Trump, both in prayer and in face to face support, helping him become a better man. And let's make our voices and votes heard for the good of the nation. The political stakes are really that high.
Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is His latest book is Jezebel 's War With America: The Plot to Destroy Our Country and What We Can Do to Turn the Tide. Connect with him on Facebook or Twitter, or YouTube.
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