Speed Reads

campaign 2016

Donald Trump courts evangelical vote at Liberty University

During his Liberty University Convocation address Monday, Donald Trump said as president, he would "protect Christianity."

The Lynchburg, Virginia, school says it is the largest Christian university in the world, NBC News reports, and its president, Jerry Falwell Jr., told Trump he reminded him of his own father (Trump called that the "best compliment of all"). Trump promised that, if elected, "you're going to say 'Merry Christmas' again," and called Jeb Bush "a stiff." He also referenced "two Corinthians" (conventionally, it would be cited as "Second Corinthians") and, without naming him, accused Ted Cruz of stealing his immigration and border security plans.

The Republican presidential candidates are wooing evangelicals, seen as a key voting bloc in states like Iowa. Student Casey Upton told NBC News she attended the convocation because she had to, but was "okay with listening to him. I support him wanting to run, but I'm not sure if I support him." Student Megan Cooper said she thinks Liberty University's values are "more about compassion, and I feel like Donald Trump doesn't have much compassion when it comes to other cultures that don't really fit in with the American way. I feel like that's not something that Liberty upholds."