There’s a group of “national security Republicans,” those men (and some women) with expertise in the field of foreign policy, who refuse to toe the party line and support Donald Trump. Richard Armitage, former Deputy Secretary of State in the second Bush administration, is the latest of these apostates, and he might be the biggest name of them all.
“If Donald Trump is the nominee, I would vote for Hillary Clinton,” Armitage said to Politico. “He doesn’t appear to be a Republican, he doesn’t appear to want to learn about issues. So, I’m going to vote for Mrs. Clinton.”
Pretty simple! Armitage might be running for president himself (spurred on by Bill Kristol, no doubt), if he hadn’t released the name of CIA agent to Valerie Plame to a journalist in an infamous 2006 incident. He was never charged, but the move damaged his reputation semi-permanently.
Nevertheless, as Congressional Republicans stumble over themselves to fall in line with a Trump candidacy, regardless of what they said during the primary, Armitage’s decision to break ranks looks pretty courageous. Though, as Politico notes, he’s not alone:
Dozens of Republican foreign policy elites have already declared their unwillingness to support or work for Trump, though far fewer say they would cast a ballot for Clinton. The latter group includes Max Boot, a prominent neoconservative military analyst and historian; Mark Salter, former longtime chief of staff to Republican Sen. John McCain; and retired Army Col. Peter Mansour, a former top aide to retired Gen. David Petraeus.
It’s interesting to note that the first GOP deserters all come from the field of foreign policy—it’s almost like they know how much influence a president has on important issues like…war…and don’t a thin-skinned narcissist in charge of the world’s largest military force. Imagine that.