The number of white evangelical Protestants in the U.S. with positive views of President Trump remains significantly higher than the public, according to a Pew Research Center report published March 12.
White evangelical Protestants closely align with the public in desiring a president who “personally lives a moral, ethical life,” but they diverge noticeably from the national average in their affirmative assessments of the president.
When asked, “How well does ‘morally upstanding’ describe Donald Trump?” 61% of white evangelical Protestants said it describes him very / fairly well (15% very; 45% fairly), compared to 32% of all U.S. adults (8% very; 24% fairly).
Similar results occurred when respondents were asked, “How well does ‘honest’ describe Trump?” Sixty-nine percent of white evangelical Protestants said very / fairly well (23% very; 46% fairly), compared to 36% of all adults (12% very; 24% fairly).
White Christians outpaced other religious groups in their assessment of Trump as honest and morally upstanding.
A majority (57%) of white Christians said Trump was honest, compared to only 28% of Jews, 24% of Hispanic Catholics, 23% of religiously unaffiliated and 15% of black Protestants.
Similarly, 51% of white Christians affirmed Trump as morally upstanding, while 26% of Jews, 22% of Hispanics Catholics, 19% of religiously unaffiliated and 14% of black Protestants did so.
At 64% affirmation, white Christians were two to four times as likely as these other religious groups to say they “agree with Trump on all, nearly all or many issues.”
White evangelicals were the most likely white Christian group to hold this position (76% did so), followed by 58% of white Catholics and 56% of white non-evangelical Protestants.
“The positive sentiments that white Christians express about Trump and their growing sense that their side has been winning politically largely reflect their political partisanship. In the current survey, 83% of white evangelicals identify with or lean toward the Republican Party, as do 64% of white Protestants who are not evangelical and 65% of white Catholics,” the report said.
“Meanwhile, religious groups whose partisan leanings favor the Democratic Party over the GOP – including Christians who belong to racial and ethnic minority groups, Jews and people with no religious affiliation – are far less admiring of Trump and far more discouraged about how their side has been doing in politics lately.”