Fmr. President Donald Trump visits First Baptist Church in Dallas

Trump was in town on a tour with Bill O’Reilly at the American Airlines Center.

DALLAS – Queues formed long before the service began at First Baptist Church in Dallas on Sunday. Strong supporters of former President Donald Trump came out for what was billed as a Christmas message.

Church officials said thousands were in person or watching online, and the former president began with what he said was an out-of-script message explaining how he thinks the country is in. difficulty.

“There are a lot of clouds hanging over our country right now, dark clouds,” he said. “We will come back bigger, better and stronger than ever. I’m telling you.

Trump attended church at the invitation of Pastor Dr. Robert Jeffress, but was in Dallas on a nationwide tour with former Fox News host Bill O’Reilly with a stop at the American Airlines Center. Spaces at secondary sites increased from $ 45 to $ 212.

Dr. Kimi King, professor of political science at the University of North Texas, sees Trump’s tour as a way to stay relevant and raise money.

“In some ways it’s a very safe state for the president to visit,” King said. “It’s also about leading the agenda on the critical points where President Biden is struggling and that’s in terms of the debt ceiling.”

“Well, I’ve never seen a president of our United States in person, so it’s going to be exciting,” said Bob Bischoff, who came from Austin to the AAC.

Others said they traveled from Georgia, Nebraska and other states like Amy Lee, who was from San Diego.

“I speak on behalf of many of us who would love to see him return to power, but it all depends on corruption in the elections,” she said.

Even Jeffress, one of Trump’s biggest supporters, said President Joe Biden won the 2020 election fairly, but Trump did not discuss that race or his plans for 2024 while he was at home. First Baptist.

King says that even if he doesn’t show up, it’s clear he wants to pick the candidate.

“He’s a kingmaker and his backer in those red states like Texas and Florida.”

“If he had spoken around 2024, I wouldn’t be able to talk about it,” Jeffress said when asked after the service.

Trump has been in Dallas since the 2020 election. He made the trip in July for the Conservative Political Action Conference. It has been over a year since Trump lost the presidential election, but the crowd has not completely died down.

Jerry B. Hatch