David Brody 22 Aug 2016

The Brody File has learned that organizers with the influential American Renewal Project will meet this week in Dallas to plan a massive, “Get Out the Vote” effort aimed at mobilizing pastors and their evangelical congregations.

In just the last week, the conservative Christian group, headed up by influential evangelical leader David Lane, has raised nearly $10 million. GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump recently spoke at their most recent Pastors and Pews event in Orlando, Florida, and will be invited to speak at these upcoming events along Mike Pence, his vice-presidential running mate.

Trump’s ability to connect with evangelicals at occasions like this throughout the fall will go a long way in determining whether or not he becomes president of the United States.

Right now, the six states the American Renewal Project will target are Florida, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia, North Carolina, and Iowa. They plan to hold at least six Pastors and Pews events in the next 40 days leading up to the election with the first event to start sometime in mid-late September.

These conferences will be attended by hundreds of pastors and their wives. When all is said and done, organizers are hoping thousands of pastors will get their congregations fired up and engaged about voting this fall. Additionally, the group plans to follow up with a substantial ground game, equipping pastors with all the necessary material to make sure their parishioners flock to the polls in November. That includes making voter registration cards readily available as well as information about the closest polling station.

Getting evangelicals registered to vote is critical. Estimates put the number of “self-identified evangelicals” at roughly 90 million in America but only half of them are actually registered to vote. Of those that are registered to vote, only half of them show up on Election Day.

A dozen or so evangelical organizers tasked with implementing the strategy will attend the meeting this week in Dallas. With early voting scheduled to begin in states like Ohio in the next few weeks, time is of the essence.

Besides David Lane, the attendees will include Dave Carney, who’s been one of the top political operatives in the country. He was the former political director at the White House for George H.W. Bush and has also been a longtime top aide to former Texas Gov. Rick Perry. He’s very well-known in GOP national political circles.

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