A former pro-choice reality TV star from Fifth Avenue, candidate Trump wasn’t conservative catnip, but now conservative thought leaders say they are firmly behind Trump because they believe he is sticking to his campaign promises.
“I wasn’t sure, quite frankly, that candidate Trump really believed the things he was saying,” said Terry Jeffrey, the editor-in-chief of CNSnews.com. “Reinstating the Mexico City policy, defunding the UNFPA, naming a justice to the Supreme Court that he took from a list that conservatives put together — that showed that he’s serious about the things he campaigned on,” he explained.
Since the beginning of the presidential race in 2016, we have been checking in with conservative leaders to get a sense of the movement’s thinking about the candidates, the primaries, and the general election. This week we sat down with three conservative leaders to talk about the beginning of the Trump administration. And, in the span of less than two years, these conversations have done a 180. What was once reticence — even rejection — is now a full embrace.
“Our supporters are behind what he is doing and approve of the job that he is doing by like 95-96%,” said Jenny Beth Martin, president and co-founder of the Tea Party Patriots.
That group waited until late September 2016 to endorse the Republican nominee. “We were working on down ballot races,” she said at the time as an explanation for why they had waited so long. “We needed to see that through before we turned our attention to the general election.”
Back in March 2016, Martin’s opinion was even starker. In an op-ed warning Trump’s supporters against him,…
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