FRC debunks NPR claim of evangelical 'concern' over Trump

Monday, April 9, 2018
Michael F. Haverluck (

FRC Tony Perkins RNCFamily Research Council (FRC) President Tony Perkins blasted a recent NPR report claiming that evangelical leaders are organizing a meeting in June with President Donald Trump to discuss their concerns about the Stormy Daniels allegations waged by the political left possibly toppling the conservative agenda in Washington.

He described that latest attempt by NPR as just another chapter of its ongoing anti-Trump narrative to tear down the Republican leader and party – before the state-subsidized news hub touts its favorite Democratic challenger of Trump for the 2020 presidential election.

“[The] organizer of the Trump-evangelical summit study said it's not about 'Stormy,'” WND reported on Perkins’ latest tweet on the topic. “Instead, Perkins said there is an effort to organize an event similar to the one held in New York in 2016 at which about 1,000 evangelical leaders gathered to share ideas.”

Rather, he explains, struggles on Capitol Hill – not character assassination waged by the left – will be at the center of attention this summer for evangelicals. “[The focus will be about] Congress’ poor performance on promises made [since the last election],” Perkins tweeted Saturday.

NPR’s got it all wrong …

He then stressed that concerns over the alleged scandal involving Stormy Daniels has never been a primary item on evangelicals’ agenda – flying in the face of NPR’s recent reporting.

“An NPR story published this morning says evangelical leaders are organizing a meeting with the President because they’re ‘concerned’ about his past and its effect on the midterm election,” Perkins posted Saturday on Twitter. “This is not true. How do I know? I’m one of the key organizers.”

He proceeded to blast the mainstream media and Democrats for trying to push a story intended to trigger disunity and decrease support among evangelicals for the president.

“The GOP’s future depends upon evangelicals remaining enthused and engaged, which depends on the president’s agenda going forward – and the left knows it,” Perkins wrote in his tweet blasting NPR’s article that quoted anonymous “evangelical” sources to back its problematic story.

Instead of jumping on the left’s anti-Trump bandwagon, Perkins gave the president accolades for forwarding conservative evangelicals’ biblically based agenda as few presidents have done in the nation’s history.

“[We praise President Trump for advancing] the most pro-life policies since Roe v. Wade [and for] working hard to restore religious freedom that was systematically attacked by the previous administration,” Perkins continued.

Hesitant to renege

Even after Perkins shot down NPR’s report on evangelicals’ alleged uneasiness over Trump, NPR failed to indicate that its “updated” story had been “corrected” in lieu of the conservative leader’s contradicting remarks. The news outlet claimed in its original story that its hook was based on four anonymous sources.

“As allegations continue to swirl about the president and a payout to a porn star to cover up a sexual encounter, evangelical leaders are organizing a sit-down with President Trump in June, four sources with knowledge of the planned meeting tell NPR,” the NPR article titled “Concerned Evangelicals Plan to Meet with Trump as Sex Scandals Swirl” started.

It proceeded by leading off with a quote from an unidentified source it would not name for confidentiality reasons.

“‘We’re very concerned about the allegations,’ said a leader of a faith-based ministry,” NPR’s Sarah McCammon reported. “The leader is involved in hosting the gathering, which organizers are aiming to take place June 19 at Trump International Hotel in Washington, D.C. The source said the combination of the Stormy Daniels sex-scandal allegations and Trump’s continued reputation for divisive rhetoric could suppress evangelical turnout in the November midterm elections.”

She then quoted another unidentified evangelical source to indicate that the allegations against Trump could possibly collapse the conservative’s agenda in the nation’s capital.

"It is a concern of ours that 2018 could be very detrimental to some of the other issues that we hold dear," like preserving religious liberty and restricting abortion rights, the source noted,” McCammon continued her report. “The source – like the others with knowledge of the event – spoke to NPR on the condition of anonymity so as to not jeopardize the meeting.”

Down this road before …

Perkins addressed the ongoing allegations earlier this year when the mainstream news media introduced the Daniels controversy in a frenzy of attacks against the president.

“We kind of gave him – ‘All right, you get a mulligan … You get a do-over here,’” Perkins told Politico in January regarding the evangelical response to Trump over the issue.

He went on to tell Politico that he does not blame Trump for hitting back against Democrats and the mainstream media in response to their incessant attacks.

“[Evangelical Christians] were tired of being kicked around by Barack Obama and his leftists, [a]nd I think they are finally glad that there’s somebody on the playground that is willing to punch the bully,” Perkins commented before being asked by Politico about the biblical teaching of “turning the other cheek.”

“You know, you only have two cheeks," he replied. "… Look, Christianity is not all about being a welcome mat which people can just stomp their feet on.”

The leader of the Washington, D.C.-based Christian nonprofit organization then came back with a biblical principle of his own, having to do with “casting the first stone.”

“We see right and wrong – we see good and evil – but also among evangelicals, there’s an understanding that we are all fallen, and the idea of forgiveness is very prominent,” Perkins concluded in his Politico interview. “And so, we understand that, yes, there is justice, but there is mercy.”


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