Some of the Republican Party’s elder statesmen may like Hillary Clinton, but at least one high-profile member of the old guard is throwing his support to the GOP’s presumptive nominee.
Donald Rumsfeld, who served as Defense secretary under President George W. Bush, said Wednesday he will vote for presumptive Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump in November.“I’m a Republican, and there’s not any doubt in my mind how I’ll vote,” Rumsfeld said in an interview with DailyMail.com. He said he agrees with Trump on issues such as reforming NATO and keeping Syrian refugees out of the U.S.
This doesn’t come completely out of the blue. In January, the failed Pentagon secretary appeared on NBC’s “Today” where he was quick to praise Trump. “I see someone who has touched a nerve in our country,” Rumsfeld said, adding that the 2016 candidate has “caused people to respond in a way that most politicians have not been able to do.”
But that was on Jan. 25. One wonders if Rumsfeld heard what Trump had to say just three weeks later during a nationally televised debate:
“I want to tell you, [Bush administration officials] lied. They said there were weapons of mass destruction, there were none. And they knew there were none. There were no weapons of mass destruction. […]“How did he keep us safe when the World Trade Center, excuse me, I lost hundreds of friends. The World Trade Center came down during the reign of George Bush. He kept us safe? That is not safe. That is not safe.”
It’s quite a timeline, isn’t it? Rumsfeld praises Trump … Trump accused Rumsfeld’s former colleagues of lying the country into a war … Trump then lies about his opposition to that war … then Rumsfeld endorses Trump’s presidential candidacy.
The past several months have offered all kinds of examples of Republicans putting party above principle, but Rumsfeld’s support for Trump is special.
Update: Three years ago, Rumsfeld made an appearance at a right-wing event, where an unidentified man asked the former Pentagon chief whether President Obama has “actually switched sides in the war on terror.” Rumsfeld replied, “I can’t tell.”
So at least he and Trump have this in common.