Donald Trump receives passionate support from evangelicals at Road to Majority
The 45th president - who is vying to be the 47th - has spent years mired in legal and ethical scandals, from accusations that he abused his office and tried to subvert a free-and-fair election to alleged affairs.
Yet the 77-year-old Republican remains as popular as ever on the Christian right, his appeal abundantly evident at Road to Majority, a weekend gathering of 3,000 evangelicals from the Faith and Freedom Coalition in Washington.
"Together we're warriors in a righteous crusade to stop the arsonists, the atheists, the globalists, and the Marxists," Trump said as he delivered the keynote address at Saturday's closing gala to rapt applause.
"That's what they are. And we will restore our Republic as one nation under God."
Trump's famously devout vice president Mike Pence, who is running a distant third in the race for the 2024 nomination, would seem the more obvious fit for evangelicals. But he was booed at the 2021 Road to Majority over his refusal to help Trump overturn his election defeat and received largely polite applause this year.
Donald Trump calls his indictment "a great badge of courage"
The conference was being staged on the one-year anniversary of the Supreme Court ending the nationwide right to abortion, and Trump has voiced concern about some of the more restrictive curbs being pushed in conservative states.
He also sparked fury among some leaders on the Christian right when he blamed harsh restrictions on abortion for Republican underperformance in the 2022 midterm election - and he has refused to commit to a federal ban during the 2024 campaign. Nevertheless, Trump was undoubtedly the star of the show at this year's convention.
"I consider it a great badge of courage. I'm being indicted for you and I believe the 'you' is more than 200 million people that love our country," he told the crowd, earning more cheers.
Cover photo: Drew Angerer / GETTY IMAGES NORTH AMERICA / Getty Images via AFP