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Donald Trump Holds Up A Bible In Appeal To 'The Evangelicals'

Donald Trump said a final word to evangelical voters on Saturday by showing them the Word of God.

In a Facebook video, the real estate mogul opens his Bible to thank "the evangelicals" for the support they've shown him in polls.

"My mother gave me this Bible, this very Bible, many years ago," Trump says. "In fact, it's her writing, right here. She wrote the name, and my address, and it's just very special to me."

He closes this way: "I want to thank the evangelicals," he says. "I will never let you down."

It's been surprising to many that the twice-divorced casino mogul has done so well with religious voters, who are so crucial in Iowa especially. On the trail he's seemed uncomfortable using religious language, and here again his approach seems stilted. Last week, at Liberty University, he mangled the name of a book of the Bible and swore twice at the Christian school. But he still picked up the endorsement of the school's president, Jerry Falwell Jr.

Trump is in a dead heat with rival Texas Sen. Ted Cruz for evangelical support. And the final Des Moines Register/Bloomberg Iowa Poll released Saturday night showed Monday's caucus result could come down to that very subgroup.

Trump leads Cruz by 5 points overall in the poll, but the outcome would tighten to just a 1-point advantage for the businessman if evangelical turnout reaches the level it did four years ago. Still, Cruz's support has dropped 12 points since last month with evangelicals in the state, according to the survey.

Copyright 2021 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

Jessica Taylor is a political reporter with NPR based in Washington, DC, covering elections and breaking news out of the White House and Congress. Her reporting can be heard and seen on a variety of NPR platforms, from on air to online. For more than a decade, she has reported on and analyzed House and Senate elections and is a contributing author to the 2020 edition of The Almanac of American Politics and is a senior contributor to The Cook Political Report.