After Donald Trump’s widely condemned performance at a Helsinki, Finland, summit meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin — a performance branded “treasonous” in the world press, CNBC reports, even many Republicans are experiencing bouts of regret over their support for Trump, says author Jared Yates Sexton who interviewed numerous Trump supporters for an article Wednesday in the online magazine Salon.
“I’ve had it. There is some s*** I will not eat,” one state-level Republican party operative told Sexton, who is the author of an acclaimed book on the 2016 presidential election, The People Are Going to Rise Like the Waters Upon Your Shore: A Story of American Rage.
“I’m done apologizing for Donald J. Trump,” the Republican said. “Done.”
The operative told Sexton that it was Trump’s performance at a televised press conference following the Helsinki meeting with Putin that pushed him over the edge, though he had backed Trump through numerous other controversies. Trump was branded “Putin’s Poodle” by Britain’s Mirror newspaper, a headline that reflected sentiment worldwide about Trump’s seemingly compliant posture toward Putin.
“I just kept waiting, and waiting, and waiting for him to do something. Anything. I yelled, ‘Stand up for your country, for the love of God!’ And nothing. Not even a peep,” the Republican operative told Sexton.
Even Fox Business Network host Neil Cavuto, an ardent Trump backer, labeled Trump’s comments and attitude at the summit “disgusting,” The Hill reports. Ailing Senator John McCain, the Republican Party’s 2008 presidential nominee, branded Trump’s press confab with Putin “one of the most disgraceful performances by an American president in memory,” according to CNN.
McCain was actually an early Trump regretter, endorsing Trump for president in 2016, but later pulling his endorsement after a tape surfaced in October of that year on which Trump was heard making crass and sexist remarks about women, and boasting about kissing and sexually grabbing them against their will, The Guardian reported.
The GOP regret over Trump reported by Sexton also spread quickly to Twitter, where dozens of Trump voters posted messages of outrage and regret about Trump following the summit.
Hopefully your time will end. And I voted for you. Had me snowballed. Your a traitor. Anyone that can through Americans under the bus. What happened to your oath? Pathetic!— killintime (@jodie_hurt) July 17, 2018
A Republican business owner on Long Island who was a strong Trump supporter:— Jon Cooper ???? (@joncoopertweets) July 17, 2018
"The biggest mistake of my life was voting for Donald Trump. The damage he's done to our country will take years to repair. I don't give a damn how we get him out of office, but he's got to go."
@realDonaldTrump I am a Republican that voted for you, you sir are no patriot, you are a traitor,— Veronica Molinari (@Veronic97632515) July 17, 2018
I voted for you . I WAS big supporter our your. Now I feel like you kicked our country under the bus yesterday.— Shawn Mchugh (@MchughShawn) July 18, 2018
You are a traitor to this country. You took an Oath to PROTECT AND DEFEND the Constitution of the USA - NOT RUSSIA. Please step down. I voted for you, but will vote for a DEM in Mid Terms to Impeach you. You did not PROTECT OR DEFEND - you are morally wrong for the job.— IndependentVoters (@IndependentVo12) July 16, 2018
I wish I could hug all of you for my truly deplorable mistake. ???? I am a good person swayed by years of #FOX , my friends and my family. I am NEVER voting #GOP again. He needs to be impeached NOW. I am sorry ????. #TrumpRegrets @DeanHeller @HillaryClinton @JeffFlake @SteveScalise https://t.co/TK7mmeU97c— Margaret “Maggie” Whitley (@whitleyroses) July 17, 2018
The Trump regret phenomenon has been around for a long time, however, and it could be politically significant, as the Inquisitr reported.
As early as April of 2017, just three months after Trump’s inauguration, an ABC News/Washington Post poll showed that even though only a small number of Trump voters said that they regretted their vote, that number was still enough to have reversed the results of the election, putting Democrat Hillary Clinton into the White House — if those Trump voters who later had second thoughts voted the other way.