An Ohio Cleveland African-American pastor named Darrell Scott helped to organize a Monday meeting that took place at the Trump Tower in New York. At first, the meeting had been spun as one in which black evangelical pastors were endorsing Trump, but Scott later said that there had been a miscommunication and that the meeting was about having some open dialogue. Scott is the pastor of New Revival Center in Cleveland Heights, Ohio
There were apparently a myriad of reasons why about 100 pastors came to the meeting. Some of them apparently were thinking of endorsing, but others simply wanted to hear what he had to say while yet others wanted to let him know that he needed to lighten up on his rhetoric, especially in light of the Black Lives Matter incident.
Scott said that the meeting went well and that "We had a wonderful time in the meeting. We made a lot of progress. It's not the last one."
He also said, "I didn't have concerns [with Trump] because I was already convinced, but there were concerns that the liberal media has put out portraying Mr. Trump in a light that I know he's not the type of person he was depicted to be. So what we were able to do today was allow [people] to see his heart for themselves and to make up their own minds about him. And they find out that he's not the person that the media has depicted him to be."
Regarding the number of black pastors who ended up committing to supporting the Trump campaign, Scott said, "Some committed. I don't know the number. The rest are praying about it. They said, 'We have to go pray about it.' They'll come back and endorse at a future time."
Trump made a point of letting the group know at the meeting that he does believe that black lives matter, and that he also believes that all lives matter.
Pastor Al Morgan of Launch Ministries in Raleigh, North Carolina said that Trump indicated that he'd take lightening up into consideration. At the same time, Morgan said that he realizes that, "You have to remain true to yourself. And, in his defense, that's gotten him where he is. So the thing is, how do you convey a person's heart with their personality? That's the dilemma."
The church that Scott pastors in Ohio's Cleveland Heights is located in the middle of a heavily democratic population. However, Scott admits to being an evangelical conservative who is a strong supporter of the pro-life and same-sex marriage views.
He said he met one Trump's top executives, Michael Cohen, about five years ago through a mutual friend, and Cohen and Scott developed a friendship over time. That friendship led to Scott being introduced to Trump. Scott said he has watched Trump for even subtle signs of racism, and was unable to find that. So that moved him to endorse Trump.
Interestingly, Scott has admitted to being a registered Democrat and that he voted for Obama. So it's curious that he isn't leaning a bit more toward Ben Carson, who has been rather blatant lately about what seems to be his Christian stance, or Mike Huckabee, who is an ordained minister who is also running in the 2016 presidential election.