Jon Huntsman,the former Governor of Utah who ran for president in 2012, called on Donald Trump to withdraw from the race today after the release of an explosive video on Friday.
The video, obtained by the Washington Post, showed Trump bragging about groping women.
Trump is heard explaining that “when you are a star… you can do anything.”
“Grab them by the pussy, you can do anything,” Trump says.
Huntsman endorsed Trump in May, saying that he was someone who could bring the party together and lead Republicans to victory.
We’ve had enough intraparty fighting. Now’s the time to stitch together a winning coalition. And it’s been clear almost from the beginning that Donald Trump has the ability to assemble a nontraditional bloc of supporters … The ability to cut across traditional party boundaries like ’80, ’92 and 2008 will be key, and Trump is much better positioned to achieve that.
Just a week ago, Huntsman explained why he was voting for Trump. He said he disagreed with Trump on several issues but liked his views on the Supreme Court, education and land use.
After the release of the video, however, Huntsman has changed his mind.
In a campaign cycle that has been nothing but a race to the bottom — at such a critical moment for our nation — and with so many who have tried to be respectful of a record primary vote, the time has come for Governor Pence to lead the ticket.
Trump dropping out and allowing Pence to replace him at the top of the ticket has become a popular fantasy among more establishment Republicans.
Mitt Romney, the 2012 nominee who did not endorse Trump, also blasted the 2016 standard bearer.
Hitting on married women? Condoning assault? Such vile degradations demean our wives and daughters and corrupt America's face to the world.
— Mitt Romney (@MittRomney) October 8, 2016
In a terse statement, RNC chairman Reince Priebus distanced himself from the remarks, but not the candidate he has relentlessly supported and promoted.
“No woman should ever be described in these terms or talked about in this manner. Ever,” he said.
UPDATE (11:08 PM): Congressman Jason Chaffetz, also of Utah, withdraws his endorsement of Donald Trump.
— Ben Winslow (@BenWinslow) October 8, 2016