Former attorney general Alberto Gonzalez said he was “troubled” by Donald Trump’s repeated racist comments — but he’ll still back the presumptive Republican presidential nominee in hopes of putting anti-LGBT conservatives on the U.S. Supreme Court.
Gonzalez appeared Wednesday morning on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe” to discuss the FBI decision not to charge Hillary Clinton with mishandling classified information, and host Joe Scarborough asked whether he could overlook Trump’s anti-Hispanic rhetoric.
“From my perspective, the two most important decisions a president has to make deals with the Supreme Court and national security,” Gonzalez said.
He said Clinton had already promised to continue the foreign policy of President Barack Obama, which Gonzalez said had been a “disaster.”
“I don’t think Donald Trump will be any worse than Hillary Clinton with respect to foreign policy,” Gonzalez said. “With respect to the court, I already have a pretty good idea of what Hillary Clinton’s going to do. The list released by Donald Trump, with respect to the possible people he might appoint, give me some hope that he will do a better job in making appointments to the Supreme Court.”
Senate Republicans, at the behest of conservative activist groups, have held up the nomination of appeals court Judge Merrick Garland to deny Obama a chance to replace the late Justice Antonin Scalia.
The real estate developer and former reality TV star released a list of potential judicial candidates who, for the most part, have appeared on wish lists publicly circulated by social conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation.
Those potential candidates — such as appellate Judge William Pryor, who would jail gay couples for having sex in their own homes — are noteworthy for their extremely reactionary views on LGBT, abortion, contraception and individual rights.
“There’s enough there, but again — he’s got some work to do, as far as I’m concerned,” Gonzalez added.
Scarborough pressed Gonzalez, the first Latino to serve as U.S. attorney general, to say whether he could overlook Trump’s bigoted campaign rhetoric and endorse him for president.
“That is very troubling to me, and I would have a difficult time supporting him,” he said. “But again, let’s give him — we keep saying, hopefully he’ll turn this around, and I remain optimistic that he’s going to do and say the right things to make him a viable candidate going into November.”
Can Alberto Gonzales support Trump given all his statements on race, Hispanics, and Muslims? His answer: https://t.co/SGZqE2bwDx
— Morning Joe (@Morning_Joe) July 6, 2016