For the last 26 months, I have explained over and again why I, as an evangelical leader, voted for Donald Trump. But in recent days, I have felt the weight of it all over again. There really were strong reasons to vote for Trump, and, given similar circumstances in 2020, I would vote for him again.
To be sure, I regret a lot of the negative fallout that has come with the Trump presidency. Our national divisions have deepened, and it's not all the media's fault or the left. The president can be highly divisive, often in ways that are unnecessary and unjustified.
Quite obviously, as an evangelical, I do not back the president's every word or decision, especially when he waxes ugly and even vulgar. (Please underscore those words "quite obviously.")
But recent developments have reminded me why we made the choice we did and why it was the right choice to make. The critical nature of the issues at stake leave us few to no voting options.
Consider first some of the potential Democratic presidential candidates for 2020.
As noted on The Hill (speaking to fellow Democrats), "we are leaning left too far."
Yes, "For Democrats, one trend that has taken hold is quite alarming: our swing to the far left. That trend has been exemplified by almost all of our putative presidential candidates. The two clearest examples of trying to appeal to our base by being as progressive as possible were the rush to embrace a 'single-payer health care system after Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vermont, publicly endorsed it and the stampede to call for the abolition of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE)."
It is no exaggeration to say that some of the potential Democratic candidates make Hillary Clinton appear moderate.
There is Beto O'Rourke. (In the words of the U.K. Guardian, "If there was a bold progressive in this election [at least one facing an opponent], O'Rourke was that candidate.")
There is Kamala Harris. (A Fox News headline quoted Niall Ferguson's sentiments: "If Democrats Nominate a Far Left Candidate Such as Senators Elizabeth Warren or Kamala Harris, It Improves President Trump's Chances for Re-Election.")
There is Pete Buttigieg. (He is the openly gay mayor of South Bend, Indiana, and if elected, would be the nation's first gay president.)
Once again, there is Bernie Sanders. (Arguably, he is the single person most responsible for popularizing socialism in America.)
And there is Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, the new face of the Democratic party. Need I say more?
As for the issues that matter most to me—starting with the sanctity of life in the womb, the importance of marriage and family, standing with Israel—each of these candidates would be diametrically opposed to a conservative evangelical position.
If 2020 came down to any of these putative Democrat candidates vs. Trump, it would be a no-brainer for me. Trump would get my vote.
And then there is that five-letter word: courts.
Last week, a state judge in Iowa struck down the "fetal heartbeat" bill, which prevents abortions once the baby's heartbeat can be detected.
As reported by a local news outlet, "Judge Michael Huppert found the law unconstitutional, concluding that the Iowa Supreme Court's earlier decisions that affirm a woman's fundamental right to an abortion would include the new law passed last year."
We desperately need judges who will do away with the myth of "a woman's fundamental right to an abortion" and will instead rule in favor of life.
Against this backdrop, it is critically important that Trump recently renominated 50 judges for federal positions, including two for San Francisco's notoriously far left 9th Circuit Court. And Trump's list of 50 is filled with solid conservatives.
In contrast, can you imagine what kind of judges a far-left Democratic president would nominate?
Last July, The New York Times reported that, "Trump Is Putting Indelible Conservative Stamp on Judiciary."
In September, Reuters stated that, "Trump chips away at liberal U.S. appeals court majorities."
And he has two more years to go in his present term and, possibly, another four years after that.
In light of the positive transformation of the courts, I will gladly put up with the president's divisive ways as much as I regret them. Again, the alternative leaves me no choice.
Just last week, the state of New York passed its dreadful abortion law as well as stole the freedom of choice from minors struggling with same-sex attraction or gender confusion. They are now forbidden from receiving professional help to resolve these issues, even with parental backing.
Both of these oppressive rulings need to be challenged in the courts, and we need solid judges to make righteous decisions when issuing their rulings. This cannot be emphasized too strongly.
And for those who think the media would let up if we had a more mild-mannered, Christian-based president like Mike Pence, think again. The left hates Pence every bit as much as it hates Trump, just for different reasons.
In an ideal world, we would have a president who was a shining example of Christlikeness, well-versed in the Scriptures, and serving as the leader of all Americans, from all faiths and backgrounds. And perhaps that day will come, even in our lifetimes.
But right now, as the Democratic party continues to lurch left, as the courts play a bigger and bigger role in our society, and as the secular media exposes its extreme bigotry and bias, I am reminded afresh of why I voted for Trump in 2016.
And that's why, given similar choices in 2020, I would vote for him again.
Dr. Michael Brown (www.askdrbrown.org) is the host of the nationally syndicated Line of Fire radio program. His latest book is Evangelicals at the Crossroads: Will We Pass the Trump Test? Connect with him on Facebook or Twitter, or YouTube.
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