Author and National Review Senior Editor Jay Nordlinger has been a Republican for years, but has left the party over its continuing support and presumptive nomination of Donald Trump, a man he writes is "grossly unfit to be president, in both mind and character, especially the latter."
"Even if I agreed with him on the issues — even if I thought his worldview sound — I would balk at supporting him, owing to the issue of character," Nordlinger wrote in an extensive opinion piece for the conservative website.
With the issues alone, Nordlinger writes, Trump leads toward big government, including rejecting entitlement reform and free trade, threatening to withdraw from NATO, approving of President Barack Obama's renewed relations with Cuba, and praising Planned Parenthood.
And his call for strength plus "winning" is "not the mentality of a constitutional conservative or a liberal Democrat," said Nordlinger.
But most of all, said Nordlinger, Trump's character trumps his stance on the issues.
"Trump mocks the handicapped — physically mocks them — for the enjoyment of his audience," said Nordlinger. "He insults women on the basis of their looks. He brags of the women he has bedded, including “seemingly very happily married” ones. He mocks the religions of others. (Distinctly un-American.) He implied that Ted Cruz’s father had a link to the Kennedy assassination."
And by embracing Trump, said Nordlinger, the GOP has "disfigured itself, morally."
"The presidential nominee stamps the party," she writes. "He is the brand of the party. As I see it, or smell it, an odor now attaches to the GOP, and it will linger long past 2016, no matter what happens on Election Day."
Nordlinger said he registered as a Republican as soon as he was old enough to vote and to the best of his recollection has never voted for a Democrat, and even now that he's "divorced from the GOP" he won't start now.
"I held the Republicans to be a boon to the country and world. But then they nominated, or were poised to nominate, Donald J. Trump for president," said Nordlinger. "And that’s where I get off. I ceased to be a Republican on the night of May 3, when the results of the Indiana primary came in. A party that thinks Donald Trump ought to be president is not a party I should belong to."
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