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Trump to Honor Veterans at DC Event Sponsored by Evangelical Church

  • VOA News

FILE - Then-President-elect Donald Trump gives the thumbs-up sign as he arrives at the Trump National Golf Club clubhouse in Bedminster, N.J., Nov. 19, 2016.

U.S. President Donald Trump was spending most of the weekend at his golf club in Bedminster, New Jersey, but planned to fly back to Washington briefly Saturday to deliver a speech at an event hosted by a large evangelical church.

The First Baptist Church of Dallas said in a news release Saturday that the president would "deliver a powerful address honoring our veterans." The church said hundreds of veterans from the Washington area would attend the event, including wounded veterans from Walter Reed National Military Medical Center.

The megachurch was sponsoring the "Celebrate Freedom Rally" at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, along with Salem Media Group, a provider of content for the conservative Christian community.

The church, based in the southern city of Dallas, Texas, is pastored by Robert Jeffress, a staunch supporter of the president. Jeffress hosts some television and radio programs that are accessible outside the U.S.

Trump has enjoyed strong support from the evangelical community. Exit polling data from last year's presidential election showed Trump captured 81 percent of the white, born-again/evangelical Christian vote, compared with only 16 percent who voted for Democratic opponent Hillary Clinton.

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