A small but still rare breach opened earlier this month between President Trump and white evangelicals, one of his most loyal groups of supporters, over the administration's policy of separating undocumented migrants from their children.
Tuesday's Supreme Court decision may help patch things up. The court decided, 5 to 4, that crisis pregnancy centers should not be required to provide information about abortions to patients.
Politically, the decision will probably affirm for white evangelicals that the gamble they made on Trump is paying off. Neil M. Gorsuch, Trump's only appointee to the court thus far, was part of the majority that ruled that the California law in question violated the First Amendment.
Abortion wasn't the top issue for most Republicans in 2016, but it was important to many of them. Nearly half — 47 percent — of conservative Republicans said abortion was a very important issue to their vote in 2016, according to the Pew Research Center. That number is higher for white evangelicals, who hold the country's most conservative stances on abortion — even more than Catholics.
According to a 2017 Pew Research Center survey, 70 percent of white evangelicals thought that all or most abortions should be illegal. And for a president heading into the midterm elections, likely with some concern about whether those who got him to the White House will give him the Congress he needs to carry about his agenda, the Supreme Court ruling is a much-needed victory.
Evangelicals following the case argued that requiring pregnancy crisis centers to inform their patients of clinics that provide abortions went against Americans' fundamental rights, in part because it could force some to compromise their deeply held religious beliefs.
Wins like these during a time where culture wars seem to be ongoing may give this community hope that the Trump era's lasting legacy won't be one solely of chaos.
But those who are on the opposing side of this issue politically fear that this momentum could do lasting damage to their cause. Due to an increase in antiabortion bills being introduced in state legislatures, some abortion rights advocates have accused the antiabortion movement of putting women's constitutional right to an abortion at significant risk. Given that, Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) tweeted that the right to an abortion must be protected.
Despite data suggesting that nearly 6 in 10 Americans believe that abortion should be legal in all or most cases, according to Pew, abortion rights supporters are fighting an uphill battle. The next confrontation could be during the midterms.
While white evangelicals make up only about 13 percent of the population, according to a recent Washington Post-ABC News poll, the group is easily among one of the most influential in the Trump era. And the voting bloc, which includes large percentages of older, white and conservative Americans, is much more likely to show up at the polls in November than those who view the abortion issue differently.
Given the Trump administration's pattern of appointing judges who are conservative on abortion issues, as well as the president's support for reversing whatever gains the abortion rights movement made under the Obama administration, white evangelicals are likely to remain loyal to Trump regardless of how other scandals in this administration play out.