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‘You Just Can’t Vote Democrat,’ Donald Trump Tells SBC Pastors at Offsite Event During Annual Meeting

Donald Trump
Photo credit: ChurchLeaders

Former president and 2024 presidential nominee Donald Trump addressed pastors and church leaders at the Life & Liberty Forum presented by the newly formed The Danbury Institute at the Southern Baptist Convention’s (SBC) annual meeting on Monday (June 10).

Trump’s address came through a prerecorded message and was not affiliated with the annual meeting in any official capacity. The forum took place at an offsite location one day before the meeting officially commenced.

Dr. Scott Colter, The Danbury Institute’s chief executive officer, told the few hundred in attendance that Trump wanted to be there in person and that The Danbury Institute was even close to confirming the date with his campaign. But Trump’s trial made it “completely impossible to do so,” Colter said, although Trump still wanted to be part of the event and sent a message.

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In addition to Trump, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary President Dr. Albert Mohler, Congressman Mark Walker, and Promise Keepers CEO Shane Winnings addressed the room, as well as others including Ryan Helfenbein, the executive director of Liberty University’s Standing for Freedom Center.

While introducing Trump, Colter praised Trump for appointing conservative Supreme Court justices who voted in favor of Roe v. Wade. “We can debate all day long the merits of who Donald Trump is and his personality, and all of those different things. But he did what he said he would do,” Colter said.

Donald Trump Addresses SBC Pastors

“Hello to everyone at The Danbury Institute and to all of the wonderful pastors and faith leaders, very respected people gathered for the Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting. That’s a big deal,” said Trump.

After thanking everyone for their “tremendous devotion to God and to country,” Trump praised Baptists for the “tremendous support” they’ve showed him. “I hope I’ve earned it,” he said, “because we’ve done things that nobody thought were possible to have gotten done.”

Trump told the church leaders in the room that their “work is so important” because of the “difficult times” the nation faces. “We can’t afford to have anyone sit on the sidelines. Now is the time for us to all pull together and to stand up for our values and for our freedoms,” Trump said.

Trump added, “And you just can’t vote Democrat. They’re against religion, they’re against your religion in particular, you cannot vote for Democrats and you have to get out and vote.” Trump stressed that Southern Baptists “have to defend religious liberty, free speech, innocent life, and the heritage and tradition that built America into the greatest nation in the history of the world.”