Speaking on Monday at an event hosted by the Retired American Warriors PAC, Donald Trump fielded a question from a retired chaplain asking what he would do as president to halt the ongoing erosion of military members’ religious liberty. During his answer, Trump began to address the case of a Washington state high school football coach who was fired after leading pre-game prayers with his team, when — lo and behold — he discovered that the coach, Joe Kennedy, was also in attendance at the event.
After hearing the full story of Kennedy’s firing (which he called “outrageous”), Trump proceeded to remark on the importance of religious liberty and reiterated his plan to repeal the Johnson Amendment.
You can watch Trump’s full answer and read the transcript below:
…Religious liberty. Hey, it’s about religious liberty. And there has to be a melding of both. We’re living in a time where you have to have a melding of both. But it’s very unfair what they’re doing to religion in this country.
And, you know, one of the things that I’m doing, and we’re — we have the Johnson Amendment, you know what that is? Lyndon Johnson in the 1950s passed an amendment because, supposedly, he was having a hard time with a church in Houston, with a pastor. And he passed an amendment saying, basically, if you’re a pastor, if you’re a religious person, you cannot get up and talk politics. You cannot really — here’s a prime example of it. You know how strongly I feel about it.