When you think of Christian nationalism, Republican social conservatives probably come to mind, and for good reason. In 2020, President Trump won 59% of those who attended religious services at least monthly. Among white Americans, that number jumped to 71%.
Although infamously impious himself, Trump made a point of pandering to evangelical Christians as much as possible. Prior to the 2020 election, he told evangelicals he would put prayer back in public schools and elevated Christian conservative Amy Coney Barrett to the Supreme Court. Christian nationalism played a major role in the January 6th insurrection, with several of the rioters claiming they were answering God’s call. Christian nationalists are fighting to put Christianity back in public institutions. Trump support is dominant in these communities, as nearly 8 in 10 white evangelicals voted Republican in the 2020 Presidential contest.
Republicans’ embrace of Christian nationalism is dangerous because it is fundamentally incompatible with democracy. A Christian nationalist believes that America is a Christian nation and that the Christian God should be placed in the center of public institutions—a belief in irreconcilable conflict with a pluralistic society in which all groups, including other religions and the nonreligious, have an equal right to compete for power under the same rules. In fact, a Christian nationalist would believe that any rule that does not result in white Christians dictating the country’s political and cultural norms should be thrown out by any means necessary. It’s the kind of logic that could lead to the disintegration of democracy—or maybe even a violent insurrection.
But are Republicans the only Christian nationalist party in America?