Evangelical leaders wonder: Will Donald Trump be the social con choice?

They’re just being nice in saying this, right? Trump becoming the social con candidate is like … Soros becoming the fiscal con candidate.

Or is there some sort of Biblical resonance to Birtherism that I’ve been missing? This would make sense then, I guess.

Some key national Evangelical leaders tell The Brody File that Donald Trump “may find support among social conservatives” if he runs for President and there’s a “growing curiosity” about him within Evangelical circles…

Ralph Reed, one of the top GOP strategists in the country and Chairman of the Faith and Freedom Coalition tells The Brody File, “There is a nascent and growing curiosity in the faith community about Trump. Evangelicals will like his pro-life and pro-marriage stances, combined with his business record and high-wattage celebrity all but guarantee he will get a close look from social conservatives as well as other Republican primary voters.” Tony Perkins, President of the Family Research Council is curious to hear more as well. “Given Donald Trump’s background in the gambling industry and his flamboyancy one would not think he would be a fit with Evangelical voters. However, given the wide open field of candidates, strong statements that Trump has recently made on core social issues combined with an overarching desire to see a new occupant in the White House, he may find support among social conservatives.”…

One prominent national evangelical leader told me that, “At this point Evangelicals are having a hard time trying to figure him out but they are intrigued.” Another prominent evangelical Leader tells The Brody File, “Although Donald Trump is immensely colorful and entertaining it’s difficult to take him seriously at this point. He has however gotten on evangelicals radar due to his pleasantly surprising comments on life and traditional marriage. Very few people in our circles really know him so it’s difficult to have an accurate read on him as a man. He is at the very least refreshing in his candor.”

Alternate headline: “Ralph Reed, Tony Perkins eager for guest shots on ‘The Apprentice.'” As I’m reading this piece, I’m picturing the look on the face of poor Newt Gingrich, who, despite pandering shamelessly to Christian voters, continues to trail not only Huckabee and Palin but even Mitt Romney among evangelicals. And now Trump, who’s also on his third wife, is suddenly getting back pats from evangelical leaders? What’s a former Speaker of the house got to do to earn some social con cred?

Have a look at New York magazine’s comparison of Trump’s stance on social issues circa 1999 with his stance today. Trump ’99 sounds a lot like Rudy Giuliani, albeit more enthusiastic for universal health care. Trump ’11 sounds like Rick Santorum. If Rudy suddenly decided he was pro-life and anti-gay marriage, would he have a shot at winning Iowa? It’s not too late! (Well, yeah, it is.)

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