Talk show host Montel Williams may have supported Republican Gov. John Kasich during the Republican primaries, but he’s jumping the GOP ship and supporting Hillary Clinton in the general election.
That’s how bad Trump is, Williams writes today.
In a USA TODAY opinion piece published Wednesday evening, the 22-year Marine Corps veteran said that Clinton is “the only choice” in a race against Donald Trump.
I became a Republican because I agreed with what President Ronald Reagan said in his 1984 convention speech. “In the party of Lincoln,” he said, “there is no room for intolerance … or bigotry of any kind. Many people are welcome in our house, but not the bigots.” I became an independent about 20 years ago because, in my view, the Republican Party had left me.
During this year’s primaries, I finally found a candidate who embraced this unifying message, one for whom I said I’d return to the GOP: Ohio Gov. John Kasich. After his withdrawal, my instinct was to keep silent on my vote. But over the past three weeks, it’s become clear to me that I have an obligation to speak out — because I believe that Donald Trump represents a clear and present danger to our country.
I’ve written before about Trump: his bigotry, the cancerous effect of his reality-show-inspired campaign, and his reviling dog whistles to white supremacists. These are obviously serious problems but they are not an existential threat. Our country has endured bigoted leaders and carnival barkers before (although I struggle to recall any so despicable as to attack a Gold Star family or seemingly suggest an opponent’s assassination).
But Trump is worse than a clown or a bigot. He’s an existential threat to our republic who cannot be trusted to be commander in chief.
Williams’ abandonment of the Republican Party during the general election is another sign that moderate Republicans just aren’t buying what the spray-tanned nominee is selling. As Sarah Jones wrote earlier, even the “Benghazi mom” speechwriter might cast his ballot for Clinton.
The TV host also rejected the idea that disaffected Republican voters should flock toward third-party candidates, saying that going that route isn’t a realistic way to defeat Trump.
Williams wrote, “As much as I wish the system wasn’t stacked against the Libertarian ticket, it is, making it an unrealistic means of stopping Trump. That leaves Clinton. She was not my first choice, but she is the right choice on a host of issues. Given the threat to America posed by Trump, Clinton is the only choice, and I will vote accordingly.”
So will many other Republicans.
According to an NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll from earlier this month, 52 percent of GOP voters are unsatisfied with their nominee.
Hillary Clinton, on the other hand, is seen favorably by 83 percent of Democrats and continues to dominate Trump in both national and swing-state polling.
Sean Colarossi currently resides in Cleveland, Ohio. He earned his Bachelor of Arts degree in Journalism from the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was an organizing fellow for both of President Obama’s presidential campaigns. He also worked with Planned Parenthood as an Affordable Care Act Outreach Organizer in 2014, helping northeast Ohio residents obtain health insurance coverage.