By Adam Chappelle, updated by John Dempsey, WLS-AM News
(CHICAGO) Republican Illinois congressman Adam Kinzinger was on WLS Thursday morning, explaining why he won’t be supporting his party’s presidential nominee Donald Trump.
Kinzinger told “The BIg John Howell Show” he cannot back Trump, even if the candidate were to become more disciplined and “on message”.
“I personally can see zero way I can support Donald Trump anymore. He has crossed too many political red lines for me, and at some point, even if tomorrow he changed, and even if tomorrow he began to stick to message and everything, I’m concerned that we’ve spent the last three or four weeks or frankly the last year, getting a window into his soul, and this is the man, who if we elect him as President, would actually be who we see as Commander in Chief, and it makes me scared.”
Kinzinger also talked with CNN about Trump’s comments that the November election will already be rigged in Hillary Clinton’s favor, saying that it’s ‘unheard of’ for a candidate to question ‘our ability to do votes here.’
The final straw for Kinzinger, though, came when Trump attacked the family of Army Captain Humayun Khan, who criticized him at the Democratic convention. Kinzinger ripped into Trump for taking their comments as “an affront to him.”
It’s a change of heart for the Congressman, who just two weeks ago at the RNC, said he’d “keep open the possibility of backing Trump.”
Rep. Kinzinger joined Big John Howell on Thursday morning to elaborate. Here is the entire segment as heard on WLS-AM 890 on Thursday, April 4
Here is a transcript of relevant portions from WLS’ John Howell’s interview with Representative Kinzinger:.
HOWELL: So, in Cleveland you said maybe I could join [Trump], I’m not quite positive, give me a few more days on this, and last night it appears you said ‘enough is enough, and I am out,’ but your not going to vote for Hillary Clinton, Congressman Kinzinger. You’re just not going to vote for Trump.
KINZINGER: Yeah, absolutely I won’t for Hillary. I mean, look, I’ve been saying for a long time I want to get there. I want to support the Republican nominee. You know, I along with probably every other American was hoping that Trump was going to hit some of kind of road to Damascus moment where he realizes he has to be presidential where, you know, he kind of figures out how to do this. And so Monday, I went to the convention, and remember he hadn’t really said anything for a week or two prior, so, that was like the new standard of – anyway, by Thursday after the NATO comments and after the spat with Kahn, I was asked about it yesterday on CNN, I just had to be honest. I personally can see zero way that I get to supporting Donald Trump anymore. He has crossed too many political red lines for me. And at some point, even if tomorrow he changed, and even if tomorrow he began to stick to the message and everything, I’m concerned that we’ve spent the last three or four weeks – frankly over the last year – getting a window into his soul. And this is the man who if we elect him as president would actually, you know, who we would see as Commander-in-Chief and it makes me scared. I’m not going to go out and actively campaign against him, you know, if he loses it’s not going to be my words that do it, but I cannot be silent anymore no matter what the political cost because this does not represent my Party and what I believe and what we believe.
HOWELL: But Congressman, if you don’t coallace around Donald Trump as Republicans and Hilly Clinton is elected president, and if infact the Republicans quite possibly lose the Senate, now you’re looking at one, two, three, four Supreme Court nominees and appointments, your thoughts on that – Isn’t that just too big of a price to pay?
KINZINGER: Well, that’s a huge price to pay, and you know, as Republicans we have to get back to winning the argument and not just relying on the Supreme Court. We have to begin to win these arguments. You don’t win these arguments by putting down Gold Star families, by dividing a country, by yelling at people and everything else. I just tell you, if we don’t win, this is not because people like me have said, ‘look this is just a bridge too far. I have to hold my morals together.’ You know, I can take a lot of stuff that is not what I believe in order for the greater good, but there’s also a redline point and I think Mr. Trump has crossed that, so, if he loses, this is not on me. I don’t think Adam Kinzinger is going to be the guy that causes that not to happen. It’s going to be on Donald Trump, because this is the year where just about anyone could beat Hillary Clinton, but I don’t know if Donald Trump is going to be able to pull that off.
Credit: JOHN HOWELL, WLS-AM 890
@ 2016 WLS-AM News