Bob Dole’s Donald Trump comes after Dick Cheney made his announcement on who the GOP nominee is expected to be. Cheney, 75, said that he has always backed the GOP’s nominees for the White House, and this year will be no exception.
Hours later the Trump campaign released a statement from Dole, a former Kansas senator who couldn’t stop Bill Clinton’s re-election effort 20 years ago, saying he was in the same boat, AL reports. The 92-year-old, who was also the Republican National Committee chairman in the 1970s, reminded the party that the voters of the country have turned out in record numbers to support Trump.
“It is important that their votes be honored and it is time that we support the party’s presumptive nominee,” he said. “We must unite as a party to defeat Hillary Clinton,” Dole added.
While Bob Dole supports Donald Trump, Dick Cheney’s endorsement of the real estate giant is a 180-degree turn from the former veep’s criticisms earlier in the campagin season. After Trump leveled a charge that President George W. Bush didn’t do enough to prevent the 9/11 terror attack, Cheney pushed back.
“He clearly doesn’t understand or has not spent any time learning about the facts of that period,” Cheney said then. “Its misleading for him to campaign on that basis.”
Trump has had trouble getting party elders to coalesce behind him since he finished off Texas Sen. Ted Cruz on Tuesday and Ohio Gov. John Kasich threw in the towel a day later. South Carolina Sen. Lindsey Graham, for instance, has flatly said he won’t support Trump in the fall and stated that he was surprised Cheney chose the opposite path, TPM reported.
“I can understand when people want to support the nominee of the Republican Party. I would like to be able to do that, but I just can’t,” Graham said. “Maybe I’m the outlier here. Probably am. There’ll be Democrats who can’t support Hillary Clinton.”
Ultimately, Graham said, “I just really feel that the Republican Party has been conned here and this guy is not a reliable conservative Republican.” Trump, as he has consistently done, punched back.
“I fully understand why Lindsey Graham cannot support me. If I got beaten as badly as I beat him, and all the other candidates he endorsed, I would not be able to give my support either,” he said in a statement. “As a candidate who did not receive 1 per cent in his own state - compared to my victory at nearly 40 per cent with many others in the race - he has zero credibility. He was a poor representative and an embarrassment to the great people of South Carolina.”
The Bush clan, too, are on the outs with The Donald. Former Presidents George H.W. and George W. Bush have both said they will skip July’s party convention, now that it’s sure to be a Trump coronation.
And Jeb Bush, the onetime presumptive GOP front-runner who crashed and burned in this year’s primary season, issued a blistering statement saying he won’t even vote for his party’s standard bearer.
“In November, I will not vote for Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, but I will support principled conservatives at the state and federal levels, just as I have done my entire life,” Bush wrote on Facebook. “For Republicans, there is no greater priority than ensuring we keep control of both chambers of Congress. I look forward to working hard for great conservatives in the Senate and House in the coming months.”
The Capital-Journal Online said that while Bob Dole supports Donald Trump, things are different on Capitol Hill. House Speaker Paul Ryan has yet to warm up to Trump. He said this week that he’s not ready to back him.