First Elected Official Quits GOP Over 'Bigot' Trump

David Johnson compares Trump's campaign to that of Hitler
By Arden Dier,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 8, 2016 7:31 AM CDT
First Elected Official Quits GOP Over 'Bigot' Trump
Iowa State Sen. David Johnson is out of the GOP.   (AP Photo/Charlie Neibergall)

The first elected official to leave the GOP over its presumptive nominee compares Donald Trump's campaign to the rise of Adolf Hitler and says he won't stand idly by anymore. Iowa state Sen. David Johnson, 65, who has served in the Iowa Legislature for 18 years, changed his voter registration from Republican to "no party" on Tuesday, citing Trump's "racist remarks and judicial jihad" against Judge Gonzalo Curiel, who Trump says is unfit to preside over the Trump University case because of his Mexican heritage, reports the Guardian. "I will not stand silent if the party of Lincoln and the end of slavery buckles under the racial bias of a bigot," Johnson tells the Des Moines Register, adding that "fascists took control of Germany under the same types of strategies" used in Trump's campaign.

"If we're going to exclude Muslims from traveling to the United States, who's next? Are we going to come down on Jews?" he adds. Johnson—who previously supported Rick Perry and Carly Fiorina—says he won't vote for Hillary Clinton, but that he'll "gladly re-join Republicans who are dedicated to equality and justice for all" if there's a split in the party. The first step for such an outcome would be for Paul Ryan to leave the party, too, Johnson says, noting it's "insanity" that he still supports Trump after labeling his remarks racist. "I don't understand what people don't see happening here," Johnson says. "I am taking a stand and feel good about it." On Tuesday, Trump said his comments about Curiel were "misconstrued," adding, "I do not feel that one's heritage makes them incapable of being impartial." (More Donald Trump stories.)

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