Dear Mr. Trump,
Doubtless you are aware that many in the nation’s large Evangelical Christian community are, to varying degrees, ambivalent or uneasy about your candidacy for president. Millions of them are certain they don’t want Mrs. Clinton in the oval office, but they are uncertain about whether or not they should vote for you, not vote in the presidential contest at all, or write in a protest candidate.
Mr. Trump, there are numerous things you could do and actions you could take that would go a long way toward making many of these American Evangelicals feel far more comfortable trusting you with the office of the presidency.
Two of the oldest axioms of public policy are “the best predictor of future performance is past behavior” and “personnel is policy.”
Consequently, given your relatively recent adoption of some positions (such as your pro-life stance) that are of critical importance to Evangelicals, it would be extremely helpful if you would strongly consider giving Evangelicals a solid and clear indication of what a prospective Trump administration would look like. Your vice presidential nominee must be unequivocally pro-life.
How could you do that? First, you could announce a vice presidential candidate and running mate who is well-known and trusted among Evangelicals and other social conservatives. After all, as former President Ronald Reagan reminded us, “Trust, but verify!”
For instance, if you were to name Indiana Governor and former Congressman Mike Pence as your vice presidential candidate, it would send a very strong, positive signal about a Trump administration’s personnel profile. Among other potential running mates, which would similarly boost Evangelicals’ confidence in you, would be Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio, Newt Gingrich, and Tom Cotton.
Second, I would encourage you, as the most “outside the box,” unconventional presidential candidate in living memory, to strongly consider announcing your choices for many of the top positions in your administration in the very near future.
This would have the advantage of further assuring Evangelicals and other social conservatives about the policy parameters and priorities of a Trump administration. These people could then campaign with you and for you.
Thus, you would have a solid phalanx of campaign surrogates that could fan out across the country, campaigning on your behalf.
Imagine the electric reaction if you were to, for example, name the following lineup over a period of days and weeks:
Secretary of State: Former U.N. Ambassador John Bolton
Attorney General: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie
Secretary of Health and Human Services: Dr. Ben Carson
Secretary of Energy: Former Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal
Secretary of Defense: Former Texas Gov. Rick Perry
Secretary of Commerce: Carly Fiorina
Director of OMB: Ohio Gov. John Kasich
Secretary of the Interior: Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback
Chief Domestic Affairs Advisor: Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee
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SOURCE: The Christian Post
Dr. Richard Land is president of Southern Evangelical Seminary and executive editor of The Christian Post.