Christian Evangelist Franklin Graham, son of the legendary Billy Graham, used to be a rather solid defender and supporter of former President Donald Trump, but that no longer seems to be the case heading down the road toward the 2024 presidential election, as he has announced he would not be supporting Trump in the GOP primary. However, Graham did say he would not be endorsing any of Trump’s challengers either.
“I’m going to stay out of it until after the primaries have finished,” Graham stated in an interview with CBS News at Friday’s March for Life. A political independent, Graham had been a very prominent defender of the former president during his time in office. Graham has not typically made endorsements when it comes to presidential primary contests.
“I’m just not going to get involved in supporting this one over that one. Let’s just let the people decide. And when the dust is settled, I’ll make a decision on that point,” he added.
The decision to not lend his endorsement to Trump’s 2024 campaign comes as there is some increasing tension between the former president and the traditional conservative voter base among evangelicals.
“Trump ruffled religious feathers recently with comments indicating a belief that many Republican midterm candidates lost due to them taking an uncompromising line on abortion restrictions in the wake of the Dobbs v. Jackson decision that overturned the constitutional right to abortion,” Just the News reported.
“It wasn’t my fault that the Republicans didn’t live up to expectations in the midterms. It was the ‘abortion issue’ poorly handled by many Republicans, especially those that firmly insisted on No Exceptions, even in the case of Rape, Incest, or Life of the Mother, that lost large numbers of Voters,” he stated in a post on Truth Social.
During an interview conducted last week on “Water Cooler,” Trump doubled-down on his comments, going on to tell the program’s host, David Brody, that “[Y]ou have to go with your heart. You have to go with what you feel. But when you have rape, incest and the life of the mother, I think that’s something that a lot of people happen to agree with. I don’t want to force anybody to do it. I think it’s much harder to win elections.”
Christian Pastor Robert Jeffress also decided not to endorse a candidate during the primary, going on to remark to The Hill that he saw no “need to make an official endorsement two years out.”
Back during the 2020 presidential election, a total of 84 percent of white evangelical voters supported Trump.
I don’t think this is some sort of negative attack on Trump by Graham. Things are just getting really ugly in the realm of politics at this point in our culture. There are a lot of good, solid conservatives who are probably going to run against the former president, and it’s likely Graham doesn’t want to alienate any potential allies that could be beneficial to partner with in pushing for the preservation of traditional family values, whether the GOP candidate turns out to be Trump or someone else.
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