Apr 2, 2024 - Politics & Policy

Trump wants "Christian visibility day"

Former US President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign event in Green Bay, Wisconsin, US, on Tuesday, April 2, 2024.

Former US President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign event in Green Bay, Wisconsin, US, on Tuesday, April 2, 2024. Photo: Daniel Steinle/Bloomberg via Getty Images.

GREEN BAY, Wisconsin — Former President Trump at a Tuesday night rally in Wisconsin said he wants Election Day this year to be called "Christian visibility day."

Why it matters: It comes as Republicans criticize the Biden White House for recognizing Transgender Day of Visibility — which happened to fall on Easter Sunday this year.

What we're watching: "Such total disrespect to Christians, and Nov. 5 is going to be called something else," Trump declared at the rally.

  • "You know what it's going to be called? Christian visibility day, when Christians turn out in numbers that nobody has ever seen before," Trump said.
  • His supporters — who queued in a half mile long line in hail and freezing temperatures — shouted their approval.

The big picture: Trump has ramped up his religious messaging in recent weeks, appealing to Christian conservatives who see him as a flawed — but effective — champion of their movement.

  • "We must make America pray again," said Trump, who encouraged supporters to buy a $60 bible and counts MAGA pastors as some of his most loyal backers.

For the record: Members of Congress are more Christian — and more religious — than the American public by wide margins, according to an analysis of data reviewed by Axios last year.

  • Americans increasingly are calling themselves "unaffiliated" with any religion — or rejecting religion altogether — at a time when influential Republicans are leaning into Christian nationalism to shape public policies, a new survey finds

The other side: "Sadly, it's unsurprising politicians are seeking to divide and weaken our country with cruel, hateful, and dishonest rhetoric," White House spokesperson Andrew Bates has said of Republicans' attacks this weekend.

Zoom out: In his first visit to the contested swing state in two years, Trump also spent significant time discussing immigration, promising the "largest deportation in American history" of undocumented immigrants.

  • He also endorsed Wisconsin Senate candidate Eric Hovde who is vying to unseat Sen. Tammy Baldwin (D-Wis.).
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