As we continue to live in a bizarro world in which Donald Trump holds a growing—currently double-digit—lead in the 2016 Republican primary, the man himself may have (please, please, please) torpedoed his own campaign among conservative Christians:
As the video continues, Trump is pressed on the nature of his relationship with God, which he mostly uses as an opportunity to brag about his business deals, his time in college, his properties, and more, before switching to a critique of Senator John McCain.
Trump also goes on at length about his love of Norman Vincent Peale, a pop psychologist whose church Trump apparently attended before Peale retired in the 1980s (a 30-year time gap Trump neglects to mention while speaking as if he’d sat under Peale’s tutelage relatively recently). I’m not familiar enough with the details of Peale’s ideas to offer much in the way of a cogent critique, but suffice it to say he is not highly regarded as a theologian.
Now, as I’ve written at The Week, I hardly advocate supporting or opposing a candidate based on their statements about their faith. Too often this leads to a dangerous confusion of church and politics, as well as disingenuous displays of religiosity from politicians.
But while Trump certainly does not seem to be attempting to mislead his audience—a more ill-informed and unattractive description of communion could hardly be developed, not to mention Trump’s unwillingness to even concede that he sins—it is difficult to believe that his poll numbers will stay high among Republicans in general and conservative Christian voters specifically after this debacle.
Of course, this is bizarro world, so what do I know?