Never has the religious right had such a strong friend and reliable supporter on policy in the White House as Trump. Not Ronald Reagan and not either of the Bushes. From the religious right perspective, those previous Republican presidents might have said the right things on social issues in campaigns, but they ultimately disappointed on policy.
Ever since the rise of the modern religious right movement in the 1970s, its activists have invariably backed for the presidency conservative pastors (the Rev. Pat Robertson, the Rev. Mike Huckabee) or establishment Republicans who promised to back social conservative policies (Reagan, George H.W. Bush, Bob Dole, George W. Bush, John McCain, Mitt Romney). Only the establishment types ever won, but once in office they focused on the economy, foreign policy, fighting wars and fighting terrorism. And they mostly put core social issues on the back burner.
Religious conservatives time and again were disappointed. Their past political activism produced a deep disdain for establishment Republicans who said the right things on the campaign trail but always reverted to mainstream agendas while in office. Having been burned so many times, religious conservatives did not know who to trust. [...]
Along comes candidate Donald Trump. He pledged without embarrassment total support for socially conservative positions. He was politically incorrect and proud of it. He not only ran as an anti-establishment Republican, the party establishment itself lined up to try to stop his nomination at every turn. [...]
And time and again, Trump has delivered. He fulfilled his pledge to appoint a strong social conservative to the U.S. Supreme Court; he has appointed social conservatives to key posts such as Education secretary; he fulfilled a pledge to re-institute the global “gag rule” prohibiting federal funds from supporting international family planning agencies that provide either abortion related services or advice; his original travel ban executive order gave a special dispensation for persecuted Christians; he is creating a new conscience and religious freedom office in the Department of Health and Human Services to protect medical professionals who refuse to provide services that violate their religious principles. The list goes on.
The last paragraph I quoted has a list of fairly compelling arguments. But is this a correct evaluation if one considers similar lists for past (Republican) presidents? Is there some systematic attempt to checklist Trump and other presidents against the policy desiderata of the Christian right? (I'm aware that such a checklist would be somewhat subjective, but I think this question can have reasonable answer(s) nonetheless. And some scholars might have tried to do it. There might even be polls that tried to find out how much self-identified Christian-right members thought various presidents were actually implementing the goals of the Christian right movement.)