Donald Trump made headlines Sunday, telling “60 Minutes” that he considered same-sex marriage settled law and had no plans to revisit it during his time in office, a statement that doesn’t appear to dampen the spirits of the overwhelming majority of evangelicals who backed the GOP nominee last week.
“These cases have gone to the Supreme Court. They’ve been settled, and I’m fine with that,” Trump told CBS correspondent Lesley Stahl.
Liberty Counsel Chairman Mathew Staver told WND and Radio America he would not expect Trump to aggressively address the issue since he has spent so little time on it. Ultimately, Staver said the definition of marriage and other hot-button issues like abortion, will mainly be influenced by the types of judges Trump nominates.
“If you have a person who is a pro-life justice, that’s a person who’s not going to be an activist justice or judge,” Staver said. “If they’re not going to be activist on the pro-life, they’re not going to be activist on the issue same-sex marriage because that’s an even further deviation from the Constitution beyond belief.”
He also points out that Trump will need to fill additional vacancies for there to be any hope of overruling the Supreme Court’s 2015 decision legalizing same-sex marriage nationwide.
“Just give the opportunity to fill those seats to someone who respects the Constitution and this razor-thin 5-4 decision on same-sex marriage, I think, will be in the same trash bin of history that Dred Scott found itself to be in when people began to wake up and have common sense,” Staver said.
And he likes what Trump has said about judges thus far.
“I’ve been pleased with his position on appointing pro-life judges and justices and vetting them through the Heritage Foundation and the Federalist Society. That’s a big deal,” Staver said. “That’s a huge deal, not just on the issue of life, but across the board. You get the justice or judge that has a judicial philosophy to interpret the Constitution, rather than to create a brand new Constitution.”
Listen to the WND/Radio America interview with Mathew Staver:
Trump actively courted the LGBT vote in the 2016 campaign. He initially supported allowing people to use restrooms and other intimate facilities based on their gender identity rather than their biological sex. He later stated that he believes the decision should be left to the states. In the final days of the campaign, Trump held up the LGBT rainbow flag at a rally in Colorado.
Still, Staver expects far fewer federal mandates designed to implement the LGBT agenda from a Trump administration.
“I don’t expect President-elect Donald Trump and his administration to be sending out letters like the transgender directive to the public schools or the federal agencies or the EEOC. I think that’s going to come to an end,” Staver said. “I think there’s going to be an end to a lot of these things that President Obama has been pushing that’s going to come to a screeching halt.”
He said that will be evident on the international stage as well.
“This administration, and Secretary (Hillary) Clinton was a part of it, has been pushing foreign nations to liberalize their abortion and same-sex marriage and marriage laws and LGBT laws. If they don’t, they’re threatening to withdraw the [foreign aid] for them. That, I think, is all going to stop,” he said. “That’s not something [Trump] is going to push as an agenda.”
Staver is also very confident that Trump’s policies and personnel will be markedly better than what America would have seen in a Hillary Clinton presidency.
“You would have had Obama on steroids,” Staver said. “I think Hillary is of the same worldview and radical mindset as President Obama, but she’s more devious than President Obama.”
Staver was very encouraged by Trump’s “60 Minutes” comments in which he again vowed to appoint pro-life Supreme Court justices, stating he believed abortion should be decided state by state and not imposed on the nation by the Supreme Court.
And he said the appointments to lower courts are also vital for conservatives.
“I’m looking forward to who the next Supreme Court justice will be, and not just that. We’ve got, potentially, other justices, and lots of appellate courts and district courts that will come available that this president-elect will appoint. I think that is good news for the American people. It’s certainly good news for life and the courts,” Staver said.
Other appointments will matter greatly to social conservatives, including attorney general and secretary of Health and Human Services. Staver said he is encouraged by the selection of Reince Priebus as chief of staff and believes former Trump campaign manager Kellyanne Conway is a good influence on Trump.
He also believes cabinet nominations will be better than anything Americans would have seen if Clinton had won the election.
“The worst possible choice of a Donald Trump presidency would be better than the choices of Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. There’s nothing to do but to improve the situation,” Staver said.
In fact, he expects a more conservative cabinet than many previous Republican presidents.
“I’m sure there are some things that he’s going to do, people that he will appoint that we won’t all agree with. On the other hand, at this stage, I can tell you that in past presidential elections, George W. Bush, George H.W. Bush, many of these individuals that got to be in a position like him, they began to put people around them that are just the old guard. That’s not what’s happening with this administration,” Staver explained.
Liberty Counsel is bathing the transition period in prayer. Staver said there is a ’round the clock and ’round the world intercession happening for Trump and his administration.
“It’s called Liberty Prayer Network. We are participating in and helping to spearhead a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week, 70 days of continual prayer,” Staver said. “It’s in process now. Someone is committed every hour, and people are participating across the country in this international and national prayer for America.”