Robert Jones of PRRI. Photo courtesy of West End Strategy Team

Robert P. Jones: White evangelicals stay locked in for the GOP

RNS asked some of the country’s top faith leaders, scholars and activists to consider what changes the religion landscape will see in 2018. Find all their predictions here.

(RNS) — 2018 will likely see white evangelical Protestants remaining locked in for Republican candidates in the midterm elections. According to the exit polls, 81 percent of white evangelical Protestant voters pulled the lever for Donald Trump in the 2016 presidential election, and they strongly supported the president throughout his first year in office.

While Trump’s job approval rating among the general population hovered around 4 in 10 (and dipped occasionally into the 30s) for most of 2017, 72 percent of white evangelicals approved of his job performance in the fall, including 3 in 10 who said there was virtually nothing Trump could do to lose their support. In the Alabama special Senate election at the end of 2017, despite multiple allegations that Roy Moore had inappropriate sexual relationships with teenage girls, no major evangelical pastor in Alabama publicly spoke out against Moore, and white evangelical Protestants similarly rallied around him, with 80 percent voting for him over his Democratic opponent.

Simply put, in 2016 and 2017, white evangelical voters demonstrated that most have come to value partisanship and political goals over candidates’ character.

Even if the 2018 midterm elections turn out to be a wave election for Democrats, as the best barometers currently suggest, white evangelicals will likely remain tethered to tribal Republican loyalty, or at least to Democratic Party antipathy, no matter who is on the ballot.

(Robert P. Jones is the CEO of the Public Religion Research Institute and author of "The End of White Christian America." The views expressed in this opinion piece do not necessarily reflect those of Religion News Service.)


  1. As I have said to every writer here so far, mankind is on the precipice of discovering their “SOUL “as a different “kind” of identity from their ego (developed through this world): The soul is the TRUE authentic self that needs to rule over the persons ego if the world will ever rise to the “New heaven and new earth” promised to all religious people. The ego holds onto what it deems as the most necessary thing in order to get it’s needs met and the ego of religious people are just as confused (Babylon) as the ego of non religious people, only it appears more so because the non religious usually have no other senses to deal with than the five we all have. Religious people are developing their soul like a chick in an egg but they don’t understand the ego is the egg that it must come out of so they “THINK” they know the truth when the truth can only be EXPERIENCED by the soul that RISES above the ego: Till the soul rules in at least 10% of mankind, (TITHE TO GOD) the world will not change from its IMBALANCED STATE: Once at least 7 million souls have RISEN above their ego, the rest of the billions of egos will experience more light and more love in the world and then it will affect us more and more till no man has to say KNOW GOD, for all shall indeed know him from the least to the greatest:

    a movement I developed (SELF HELP) not for money because its free: To help the soul rise above the ego: it is much like the 12 step program but for every kind of ego problem and soul hurt there is:

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  2. It is a lot more complicated than what most of these babbling experts have to say. As long as the Democrats stand firm in their far left – flush the fetus anytime you want, cut of your johnson and take pills and you’re now a woman, march down the street virtually naked and perform pretend sex acts (or real if you’re in SF) in the name of “pride”, hate Christians but love Islam (even the ones who treat women like dogs and behead folk just for fun), continue to create and support an unemployable mass of people dependent on the tax dollars of the shrinking group of those who actually work etc. etc. etc. Where is the character there? Yeah Trump sucks, Moore should never have been allowed to run but the alternative is a continued swirl down the toilet that liberal madness has crapped us in to. Y’all can keep scoffing and attacking and hating but the simple fact is this country needs white Christians, just as it needs other religions, colors, languages etc.. But, that fact will not be fully understood until the “we hate everyone” pseudo-liberals have totally destroyed freedom and truth in this country.

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