Washington Post Op-Ed: Trump Isn’t to Blame. The Republican Party Is.

Washington Post Op-Ed: Trump Isn’t to Blame. The Republican Party Is.
In a recent analysis for The Washington Post, columnist Catherine Rampell explores whether the recent “anger and debate” about rising anti-Semitism and hate crimes should focus primarily on President Donald Trump. In the days since a Trump-obsessed gunman shot and killed 11 worshipers at a Pittsburgh synagogue, some have questioned whether Trump’s rhetoric is contributing to a climate of hate. According to Rampell, Trump has “dog-whistled” to conspiracy theorists—but so have other Republican lawmakers who are not being similarly criticized for “encouraging ethnic hatred.” Rampell names other prominent Republicans politicians such as Rep. Steve King (R-IA), Rep. Louie Gohmert (R-TX), Rep Kevin McCarthy (R-CA), and Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL) as others who have embraced extremist and or even racist rhetoric. In the article, Rampell references PRRI’s latest data, showing that 54 percent of the country believes that the president has encouraged white supremacist groups.
The Christian Post Recaps PRRI’s American Values Survey Event at Brookings
According to the 2018 PRRI American Values Survey, white evangelical Protestants in the United States are at loggerheads with nearly every other religious subgroup in the country on key issues. Much of this dispute stems from white evangelicals’ unwavering support of President Trump: According to the new survey, 68 percent of white evangelical Protestants hold a positive view of the president. On Monday, PRRI presented the findings of the study at the Brookings Institution, where the divide between white evangelicals and other religious Americans was discussed. “To understand white evangelicals here in the U.S., we really need to look beyond the hot-button traditional religious views of abortion and same-sex marriage,” Janelle Wong, professor of American Studies at the University of Maryland and a PRRI Public Fellow said at the event, as reported by The Christian Post. Wong joined PRRI founder and CEO Dr. Robert P. Jones and other distinguished scholars on a panel at the event. During the conversation, the panelists discussed how President Trump has appealed to the “nostalgia voter.” “That brought together that old kind of Christian Right coalition, it pulled in the Tea Party folks as well,” Dr. Jones explained. “And that white working-class voter kind of fell under that rubric as well.”
What a New Survey on Values Tells Us About America
On the heels of PRRI’s 2018 American Values Survey release, Washington Post columnist Jennifer Rubin wrote an analysis of the poll’s findings. She argues that the Republican Party has been remade in the image of Trump: “When you drill down, his base (Republicans and/or evangelical Christians) is strongly in sync with him on most issues, including nostalgia for an earlier America, banning refugees, the family separation policy, fearing a majority-minority country, opposing legalization and views of immigrants. Like Trump, his supporters in comparison with the rest of the country are much more favorably disposed to Russia, less supportive of the FBI and more inclined to think police killings of African Americans are isolated events.” Rubin issues a call to action for those who are opposed to the president and his actions, writing, “If the majority, however, wants to eliminate the gap between Trump and the predominant views of their fellow Americans, they better get out and vote. We’re a divided country, but certainly not a 50-50 country.” For more analysis of the 2018 American Values Survey, click here.
Thousands Gather in D.C. to Mourn 11 Killed at Tree of Life Synagogue
Members of the Jewish community and their allies poured into Washington, D.C.’s Adas Israel synagogue on Monday to hold an interfaith vigil for the 11 lives lost at Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh last weekend. The Washington Post reports, “The 1,400-seat sanctuary at one of the District’s largest congregations was filled to overflowing, and organizers of the memorial service said that 2,500 more people were watching on a live stream in as many rooms of the synagogue as possible.” Those in attendance sang, cried, and listened to speeches “both sermonic and angry” by politicians and leaders of the Jewish community. D.C. Mayor Muriel E. Bowser (D), Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam (D) joined Jewish congregants and clergy in a Jewish prayer for healing: “Help us find the courage to make our lives a blessing.” PRRI’s Molly Fisch-Friedman notes that despite a 57 percent rise in the number of anti-Semitic incidents in 2017, according to the Anti-Defamation League, a 2017 PRRI/MTV survey of young people (age 15-24) finds only about one-third (32 percent) of young people perceive significant discrimination against Jewish people in the U.S.