- Peston on Sunday/Twitter
- Justin Welby, England’s most senior clergyman, said he is bewildered by fellow believers who voted Trump.
- White evangelical Christians overwhelmingly backed Trump last year.
- Justin Welby also called Trump’s behaviour against women “completely unacceptable.”
The Archbishop of Canterbury has said he “really genuinely” doesn’t understand why fundamentalist Christians in the United States voted for Donald Trump.
When asked to explain Trump’s overwhelming Christian support, Justin Welby told ITV’s “Peston on Sunday” show:
“There’s two things going through my mind: Do I say what I think, or do I say what I should say?
“And I’m going to say what I think.
“No, I don’t understand it. I really genuinely do not understand where that is coming from.”
Welby is the most senior clergyman in the Church of England, and also head of the Anglican Communion, which includes the US Episcopal Church.
Although he questioned the mindset of people who support Trump, Welby did say he would attend a state dinner if and when Trump officially visits the UK.
“I spent years and years involved in conflict stuff around the world where I met people who had killed many, many people,” Welby said.
“Part of the job is to meet people you disagree with, and to testify with the love of Christ to them, and to seek to draw them in to a different way.”
According to the Pew Research Center, white born-again and evangelical Christians, and white Catholics, strongly supported Trump in last year’s presidential election.
Watch a clip of Welby’s interview below:
— Peston on Sunday (@pestononsunday) November 26, 2017
The Archbishop of Canterbury also denounced Trump’s previous comments on and behaviour toward women as “completely unacceptable.”
Seventeen women have accused the US president of sexual misconduct, including harassment and assault. Both Trump and Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the White House press secretary, have suggested that women were lying.
In the same interview, which took place a day before Prince Harry and Megan Markle’s engagement was announced, Welby also sidestepped a question on whether he was given a “tip off” on the impending nuptials.
Instead, he simply grinned and said: “Well, I certainly wouldn’t tell you if I have, and I certainly wouldn’t tell you if I hadn’t.”