As Special Counsel Robert Mueller closes in on Donald Trump, some Republicans are jumping ship.
While the majority of congressional Republicans and the party as a whole remain silent in the face of Trump’s chicanery and erratic behavior, one former GOP congressman, Charles Djou of Hawaii, announced he was leaving the party, and his reasons included the character of Donald Trump as well as his policies.
In a column posted by the Civil Beat, Djou wrote he was abandoning the GOP because “I am unwilling to abandon my principles.”
He went on to say:
“I can no longer stand with a Republican Party that is led by a man I firmly believe is taking the party of Lincoln in a direction I fundamentally disagree with, and a party that is unwilling to stand up to him.”
The former congressman listed a variety of reasons for his departure, but he was most critical of, and concerned with, the character of Trump saying, “I am so disturbed by Trump’s repeated callousness toward the select few of our citizens who volunteered to defend our nation with their lives. From ridiculing John McCain’s service as a POW in Vietnam, to trivializing the grief of gold star mothers who lost their children in service of our country, Trump’s actions are indicative of a man ignorant of honor and true sacrifice,” he explained. “Most of all, I have long believed that our government leaders must lead by example. Character counts.”
Djou also blasted Trump’s “immoral behavior toward women” as a “a breach of public trust.”
“Civility is an inner trait of true character. Trump’s penchant for conspiracy theories, such as his assertion that Sen. Ted Cruz’s father was involved in the assassination of JFK, is disturbing. His poorly constructed stream-of-consciousness tweets are not only immature but provide real harm to the stability of our democracy.”
Djou complained that the GOP under Trump is “now defined as a party hostile to immigration,” and added he’s most disappointed in the party’s failure to condemn the president’s childish behavior.
A number of Republicans are warning Trump to leave special Counsel Mueller alone, including Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Sen. Marco Rubio, (R-fla), Sen. Jeff Flake (R-AZ), and even Speaker Ryan. See the full list HERE.
Will other Republicans have the guts to stand up to Trump as the culmination of the Russia investigation gets closer? Time will tell.