There are several explanations for this retreat from character as an issue. For many Christian conservatives, political identity now not only trumps religious identity, it also takes precedence over virtue — at least when it comes to selecting political leaders.
There also seems to be a feeling among many conservatives I talk to that focusing on character issues is a luxury they can’t afford at a time when the country is in such dire straits.
Politics play a role, of course. Voters from one party typically apply a much higher standard when it comes to the conduct of the other party’s candidates. I won’t be surprised when conservative Christians are among those who assail Hillary Clinton — or “crooked Hillary,” as Trump likes to call her — for her character flaws, while downplaying Trump’s.
This retreat from character is a loss for the country.