2020 Election: Hundreds of Bush, McCain and Romney Employees Back Biden in Outstanding GOP Rejection of Trump | The independent

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Hundreds of former aides from the last three GOP presidential candidates before Donald Trump took over the party are rejecting his campaign and voting for Democratic candidate Joe Biden this fall.

On Thursday, more than 230 former George W Bush administration officials – including some in Cabinet-level positions – publicly endorsed Mr. Biden. Former campaign and Senate staff members of the late Senator John McCain of Arizona and Senator Mitt Romney of Utah, the 2008 and 2012 GOP presidential candidates, respectively, also gave their public support to the former Democratic Vice President.

Among Mr Biden’s backers of Mr Bush’s camp were figures such as former Commerce Secretary Carlos Gutierrez and former Agriculture Secretary Ann Veneman.

Bush staff members said in a press release Thursday that Mr. Trump’s handling of the coronavirus pandemic, as well as Mr. Biden’s superior competence and character, have informed their decision to go public with their approvals.

“While we may all have our differences of opinion on specific political issues with the Democratic Party, we firmly believe that Joe Biden can bring us together to help heal the divisions in our country and find solutions to our problems,” he said. said Bush’s former aide. Suzy DeFrancis.

“Donald Trump has failed to keep Americans safe during this pandemic, but Joe Biden will listen to our scientists and doctors when they make life and death decisions. With lives and livelihoods at stake, our nation needs a leader with the experience, skill and character of Joe Biden, ”Ms. DeFrancis said.

Former staff members of Mr. Romney, the only Republican in the Senate to vote to remove Mr. Trump from office during his impeachment trial in February, wrote an open letter, first obtained by Politico, explaining their disavowal of the current president.

The group, organized as the “Romney Alumni for Biden,” said Mr. Trump’s words and actions as president did not represent the GOP philosophy they previously served.

“What unites us now is a deep conviction that four more years of a Trump presidency will morally bankrupt this country, irreparably damage our democracy and permanently transform the Republican Party into a toxic personality cult,” he said. the group wrote in a letter posted on Romney4Biden .com.

“We cannot just sit back and allow this to happen,” wrote the 34 former Romney campaign staff, who have held positions ranging from politics to event planning.

On Wednesday, a group of more than 100 “McCain alumni for Joe Biden” released a statement explaining that “Mr. Trump’s lack of competent leadership, his efforts to aggravate rather than bridge divisions among Americans and his inability to defend American values ​​”prevented voting for him.

McCain’s former aides – from three former congressional chiefs of staff to his 2008 presidential campaign communications director to half a dozen interns – have said they would vote for Mr Biden instead.

“We are confident that as President Joe Biden will lead an urgent and comprehensive national effort to contain the COVID pandemic. We are confident that he will call on Americans to remember our common interests and responsibilities, and not to escalate the grievances that have polarized our politics. And we are confident that he will defend the American interests and values ​​of all enemies, foreign and domestic, ”they wrote in the signed statement.

It is unclear how much such a forceful rejection by Mr Trump of former establishment figures’ aides will affect the president’s re-election campaign as he is due to speak on Thursday, the last night of the Republican National Convention. .

Mr Trump has often criticized the three Mr Bush, Mr McCain and Mr Romney, even snubbing Mr McCain during a national defense bill signing as the Arizona senator died of cancer of the brain.

The president presented himself on an anti-establishment platform in 2016 in which his supporters enthusiastically urged him to “drain the swamp” of career politicians, lobbyists and politicians, just like the Republicans who approved. Mr. Biden this week.

When the media reported earlier this year that Mr. Bush and Mr. Romney were unlikely to vote for Mr. Trump in November, the president appeared to enjoy the confrontation.

“The establishment still hasn’t learned the biggest lesson of 2016 – never underestimate the president’s ability to connect with the American people,” campaign spokesman Ken Farnaso said in a statement to The independent in June.

“No amount of tribulation from the swamp establishment will deter President Trump’s historic move,” Farnaso said.

Mr Biden retains a clear advantage in national polls over Mr Trump, with his margin in the RealClearPolitics average hovering at 7.1 percent over the past two weeks.

However, some polls in key states like Minnesota and Wisconsin have shown tighter margins.

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