Two-thirds of White Evangelical Protestants stand firmly against abortion; 79% approve of President Trump’s job performance

By Dave Andrusko

A poll released Thursday affirmed that white Evangelicals remain staunchly pro-life and that they overwhelmingly approve of President Trump’s job performance.

A poll conducted by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research found that 67% of white evangelical Protestant would make abortion illegal except in cases of rape, incest or to threats to the mother’s life.

According to the Associated Press’ coverage of its own poll, which was conducted among 1,053 U.S. adults from Dec. 5 to 9,

Those abortion limits drew 39% support from white mainline Protestants, 33% support from nonwhite Protestants, 45% support from Catholics and 37% of all Americans, according to the poll of more than 1,000 American adults from various faith backgrounds conducted by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research. …

Americans without any religious affiliation registered stronger opposition in the poll than people of specific faiths to abortion restrictions (72%)

Evangelicals, most of whom are solidly pro-life, were a key component in the coalition that elected Trump President in 2016. Writing for the Washington Post on November 9, 2016, Sarah Pulliam Bailey explained

Exit polls show white evangelical voters voted in high numbers for Donald Trump, 80-16 percent, according to exit poll results. That’s the most they have voted for a Republican presidential candidate since 2004, when they overwhelmingly chose President George W. Bush by a margin of 78-21 percent.

The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll acknowledged, “President Trump enjoys his strongest support among white evangelical Protestants, with 79% approving of his job performance.”

Several of the stories emphasized that White Evangelical Protestants did not agree with the President on other issues in the same numbers they do on abortion. This, of course, is part of the long-standing effort to distance the President from one of his core constituencies and to suggest that other issues are as important as abortion. Franklin Graham, Billy Graham’s son, put that in perspective in a December interview.

“I don’t think evangelicals are united on every position the president takes or says, but they do recognize he is the most pro-life-friendly president in modern history,” Graham said. “He has appointed conservative judges that will affect my children and grandchildren’s lives, long after he’s gone.”