President Donald Trump reportedly impugned evangelical Christian leaders, and religion in general, in private conversations with his closest staffers. The revelation comes from Disloyal: A Memoir, the new tell-all book by Trump's former attorney Michael Cohen. Among the salacious scenes laid out in Cohen's book is one encounter where Trump mocked church leaders, joking to Cohen: "can you believe people believe that bulls—?"
Advance copies of Cohen's book have been reviewed by The Washington Post, revealing the scene in Trump Tower in 2016, when Trump was campaigning hard for the presidency. There, Trump and Cohen met with prominent leaders of the evangelical Christian faith, seeking support for his run. "The cosmic joke was that Trump convinced a vast swathe of working-class white folks in the Midwest that he cared about their well-being," Cohen wrote. "The truth was that he couldn't care less."
To Cohen, this was made perfectly clear by Trump's reaction after his meeting with the church leaders. He reportedly asked Cohen how anyone could believe in their religion, referring to it as "bulls—." Trump has often espoused his faith in Christianity since 2015, although this is not the first time his sincerity has been called into question.
Trump is a self-described Presbyterian, according to a report by Business Insider. The outlet also notes that evangelical Christians are "an important voting bloc," and they turned out in droves for Trump in 2016. He reportedly won 80 percent of the evangelical votes in that election, giving him a serious boost.
Evangelical Christians are the most common single religious group in the U.S., with one in four Americans identifying themselves that way, according to statistics from the Brookings Institute. Trump's behavior, language and history do not match the typical traits that evangelical leaders seek in a political endorsement — particularly his multiple divorces and his history of proudly cavorting with models.
Still, analysts suspect that Trump has kept evangelical lobbyists happy through policy, not projection. The president has added two conservative justices to the Supreme Court, blocked funding to Planned Parenthood and defended religious freedoms that evangelical communities rely on.
This is just one of the bombshell accusations from Cohen's new book, Disloyal: A Memoir: The True Story of the Former Personal Attorney to President Donald J. Trump. Cohen also shared allegations of Trump's overt racism, his authoritarian ambitions and his shady business dealings. The book is available now in print and eBook formats wherever books are sold.