Senate Republicans continue to stand by President Trump as controversy swirls around him, but at least one of their former colleagues is pleading with them to reconsider their blind loyalty to the President.
On Monday, former U.S. Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz) wrote an op-ed in the Washington Post, warning his fellow Republicans that there was still time to save their souls.
Flake, a conservative Republican first elected in 2012, opted not to run for re-election to the Senate in 2018, recognizing that his refusal to support Trump’s election and occasional criticism of the President was likely to hurt him in Arizona’s Republican primary.
Now a resident fellow at Harvard University and a contributor to CBS News, Flake took to the pages of the Post to call out Trump for cozying up to dictators, showing hostility towards allies, and attacking journalists and immigrants, among other things.
Flake also manifestly condemned Trump’s attempt to pressure Ukraine’s president into investigating one of Trump’s political opponents, a scandal which has prompted the House of Representatives to open an impeachment inquiry into Trump.
While he touched on impeachment in his op-ed, Flake was mostly focused on trying to convince his old colleagues that they should not support Trump’s re-election campaign, saying Trump has “proved to be so manifestly undeserving of the highest office that we have.”
Flake criticized Republicans’ tolerance of Trump’s conduct, writing that they — himself included — have failed as stewards of the institutions to which they were entrusted, and also as citizens. But he said that there is still time to stop failing.
“Trust me when I say you can go elsewhere for a job. But you cannot go elsewhere for a soul,” Flake wrote.
If the initial Republican response — which is a complete lack of response — to Flake’s op-ed is any indication, his words seem to have fallen on deaf ears.
But that hasn’t stopped people on social media from pouncing on Flake, criticizing him for not doing enough while he was in the Senate.
Should any Republicans decide to respond to Flake’s op-ed in the future, we’ll let you know.