Many Republicans were shocked to learn that George H.W. Bush will be voting for Hillary Clinton this November. That's huge news (even though the 92-year-old's spokesman would neither confirm nor deny the report). Bush goes further than his son Jeb, for instance, who said in a July Washington Post piece that he would vote either Libertarian or write in a candidate he deemed acceptable. But he is not alone. What other Republicans are voting for Clinton? These nine Republicans are voting for Clinton, too, in addition to many more.
Given Donald Trump's unfavorable rating, I guess it's not too surprising that there are plenty of Republicans supporting Clinton. There are so many that Clinton has dedicated an entire page on her website to dissatisfied Republicans. And Bush might not even be the most prominent to throw his weight behind her (assuming this is true). Many on this list have had prominent roles in government much more recently, though none are former presidents.
On top of these Clinton endorsers, more have come out as clearly anti-Trump. Former Defense Secretary Robert Gates said in an editorial that Trump is "beyond repair." And Colin Powell minced no words in his emails about the Republican candidate (although he's seemingly still not exactly happy with Clinton). The coalition of "I'm with her" Republicans is stronger than ever and has plenty of room to grow.
1. David Durenberger, Former U.S. Senator From Minnesota
Durenberger was a supporter of Kasich during the primaries. He cited one of the big reasons being that the Ohio governor had a goal of bringing Americans together, which he noted was just like Clinton. Now that Kasich is out and Trump is in, he's with her. The Clinton campaign announced the Durenberger endorsement in August.
2. Carlos Gutierrez, Former Commerce Secretary
A cabinet member under George W. Bush, Gutierrez has gone on to be a big Clinton supporter, even starring in a Spanish-language commercial for her. Here's his reasoning why, as explained to CNN in August:
I think this person, Hillary Clinton, is the best for the country. I'm not thinking about [it as] a Republican, I'm thinking about [it as] a US citizen. I think at some point, you have to put the party aside and say what's best for the country? I don't want to live in a society that I think Donald Trump will create.
3. Carla Hills, Former HUD Secretary
Hills served as H.W. Bush's top trade negotiator. She endorsed Clinton in July and explained her problems with Trump to Forbes:
The man apparently is unaware of our strong economic relationship [with Mexico]. Mexico today is our second largest export nation. We export more to Mexico than to all the rest of Latin America, and more than to Germany, France, Great Britain and the Netherlands combined. Mr. Trump does not have economic knowledge.
4. Connie Morella, Former U.S. Representative From Maryland
Morella served from 1987 to 2003 and released an endorsement through the Clinton campaign in August:
Hillary Clinton has the knowledge, the experience, and the commitment to lead our country as president and commander in chief. Unlike her opponent, she will not divide, bully, or dismiss us.
5. Chris Shays, Former U.S. Representative From Connecticut
Shays served 21 years in Congress as a Republican, but that didn't keep him from writing an op-ed on CNN.com explaining why Clinton is the better choice:
Clinton, the Democratic candidate for president, will be getting my vote, not reluctantly, but with a strong conviction that she will be a good president.
6. John Negroponte, Former Director Of National Intelligence
Many more liberal Democrats have decried this particular endorsement because Negroponte was the ambassador under Reagan to Honduras when the U.S. increased its military aid to the anti-communist military dictatorship. He went on to be deputy national security adviser under Reagan and director of national intelligence and deputy secretary of state under Bush Jr.
7. Larry Pressler, Former U.S. Senator from South Dakota
This is not Pressler's first time endorsing a Dem. Before endorsing Hillary, he did endorse Obama in 2008 and 2012, but he explained the role of his fellow Republicans that don't support Clinton quite succinctly in an interview with The Hill:
The worst thing is for Republicans to be silent. A lot of Republicans are just saying, "I'll sit it out, I won't vote." Or, "I'll vote for a third-party candidate." But if they don't vote, they are giving more power to dark forces.
8. Michael Bloomberg, Former Mayor Of New York
OK, technically Bloomberg is now an independent, but he used to be a Republican. He only changed his party affiliation in 2007 when he was said to be mulling over a third-party run for the presidency. Plus, given what the other former Republican Mayor of New York Rudy Giuliani says about the election, it's nice to hear the other side. Bloomberg even spoke at the DNC:
There are times when I disagree with Hillary Clinton. But let me tell you, whatever our disagreements may be, I've come here to say: We must put them aside for the good of our country. And we must unite around the candidate who can defeat a dangerous demagogue.
9. Michael Morell, Former CIA Director
He's also officially an independent, but he got his start at the CIA under Reagan. So Morell wrote an op-ed in The New York Times entitled "I Ran the C.I.A. Now I'm Endorsing Hillary Clinton." What he says is pretty clear:
In sharp contrast to Mrs. Clinton, Mr. Trump has no experience on national security. Even more important, the character traits he has exhibited during the primary season suggest he would be a poor, even dangerous, commander in chief ... Our nation will be much safer with Hillary Clinton as president.
This list of nine Republicans who joined Bush Sr. in supporting Clinton shows the infighting within the GOP — Trump might not have complete support after all.