"Trump demands governors allow churches to open" "President Trump on Friday ordered governors to allow houses of worship to open immediately, declaring them “essential” to American life during COVID-19." “The governors need to do the right thing and allow these very important essential places of faith to open right now, this weekend,” Trump said during brief remarks at the White House. Trump took no questions, however, and left immediately after his brief statement." “If they don't do it I will override the governors. America, we need more prayer, not less," he said." https://thehill.com/homenews/administration/499184-trump-demands-governors-allow-churches-to-open "Behind Trump’s demand to reopen churches: Slipping poll numbers and alarm inside his campaign" "A sudden shift in support for Donald Trump among religious conservatives is triggering alarm bells inside his reelection campaign, where top aides have long banked on expanding the president’s evangelical base as a key part of their strategy for victory this November. The anxiety over Trump’s standing with the Christian right surfaced after a pair of surveys by reputable outfits earlier this month found waning confidence in the administration’s coronavirus response among key religious groups, with a staggering decline in the president’s favorability among white evangelicals and white Catholics. Part of the strategy Trump allies have adopted to protect his relationship with conservative Christians is to frame the novel coronavirus — and church closures in response to social distancing restrictions — as a threat to religious freedom. Pence told conservative radio host Hugh Hewitt earlier this month that “the liberties enshrined in the Constitution still apply to every American, even in the middle of a national emergency.” The Justice Department has also gotten involved. In a letter sent Tuesday to California Gov. Gavin Newsom, department officials warned the prominent Democrat that his measures to relax social-distancing guidelines in the Golden State cannot discriminate against religious groups and institutions https://www.politico.com/news/2020/05/22/trump-churches-evaneglicals-coronavirus-274842 Most know Trump's history with religion is skeptical at best, so who, other than some southern evangelicals, are going to now buy Trump's sudden "we need more prayer" theme? And how would this not be Trump pimping religion in the midst of a health crisis for his own political ends?