So the first time I saw it was before the news story of Donald Trump's lewd conversation broke on Friday afternoon (a favorite time for unpleasant news to be released). I wondered if the news story would impact my opinion of the event. I don't think it did. I was not surprised by the news story and am confident that the speakers in the forum were fully aware of Mr. Trump's character when they participated.
It was sponsored by My Faith Votes, The Florida Family Policy Council and LifeBridge Church of Windemere, Florida (where the event was held). It was held Tuesday October 4 right before the Vice Presidential Debate at 5:00 PM MDT.
There was a forum of four speakers and a moderator. There were also questions from the audience in attendance and from Facebook and folks who were watching via live streaming at the My Faith Votes website.
The moderator was John Stemberger (President and General Counsel of the Florida Family Policy Council. The speakers were
1. Pastor Clayton Cloer of a large and diverse congregation in Orlando - First Baptist Church of Central Florida.
2. Bill Wichterman author and former White House Liaison to the Faith Community under President George W. Bush
3. Bob Vander Plaats President and CEO of Iowa's The Family Leader, political strategist, a former candidate for governor of Iowa.
4.Bishop Harry Jackson Reconciled Divide http://www.thereconciledchurch.org/
leader of HILC (High Impact Leadership Coalition) in Washington D.C.
All five of these men are highly qualified and a sentence or two is not sufficient to introduce them.
Another organization that was mentioned is Family Research Council and Family Policy Councils. There are state family policy councils in 38 states. There is not one in Utah.
Here are a few of my notes.
Bob Vander Plaats: "You can fool a fool. You can con a con. But you can't kid a kid." "Our schools are not designed to raise our children. Parents raise children."
Bill Wichtermann: He enumerated multiple complaints about Donald Trump using quotations from Trump. When he was asked about whether he could vote for Gary Johnson he replied that he is a social conservative and Gary Johnson is not. And he is a military conservative and Gary Johnson is not.
Pastor Cloer: He had the perspective of being a pastor and being hampered in his helping people because of entitlements that favor single parents over married couples, gender confusion, illegal immigrants who can not have the protection of the law because of their situation, etc.
Bishop Harry Jackson was probably the most vocal. Here are his seven issues that frame his voting decisions.
1. Religious Liberty
2. Supreme Court Justices
3, Support of Israel
5. Business Empowerment
6. Dealing with Nonviolent Offenders Fairly
7. Family Tax Incentives
One statistic for #5 was that under President Obama 1.8% of small business loans went to black Americans. Under President Bush 8% of small business loans went to black Americans. Since black Americans are 13% of the population they should have received 13% of the small business loans.
In his opinion the Democratic Party has an adulterous relationship with the Black Community. Just before an election the party comes around courting and sweet talking. Then after the election the Party disappears and there are "no flowers, no candy, no support."
Bishop Jackson told about his father who was not allowed to vote because he was a Black American. Partly because of this he is adamant that voting is not a right. Voting is a responsibility.
John Stenberger was an excellent moderator and asked many pertinent questions. At the end he had a wonderful list of questions for us as voters to ask ourselves.
I am motivated to Pray Think Vote.
SPOILER: Four of these men are going to vote for Donald Trump. One is going to vote for Evan McMullin.